I have this climbing rose that puts out a great show every spring. It is
growing like crazy and i want to prune it and arrange it. I know it blooms
only on the new growth for next year. Any do's and don'ts?
It is generally recommended that roses, including climbers, be pruned in
early spring. In very mild climates this is sometimes moved up to midwinter,
but early spring is the norm. Climbers usually are not pruned as severely as
say, hybrid teas. You want to encourage long canes which when trained
horizontally, will produce numerous lateral shoots that are the source of
the flowering stems. If the rose is well established, periodic removal of
the oldest canes will encourage the production of new, more vigorous canes.
I have an antique rambler, which, while not a true climber, is trained to
grow in a similar manner. This is a single bloomer that produces literally
thousands of blossoms and extremely vigorous growth. I prune it back hard
each season immediately following tis bloom period. This keeps the plant in
check - it takes over a considerable portion of my garden, otherwise - and
still provides enough time for the plant to develop new growth during the
season to support the next summer's flowers.
While midseason pruning of modern climbers is not a general practice, the
response of the plant to this process depends a lot on the specifc rose in
question and the aftercare given
pam - gardengal
Climbers that bloom on old wood should be "pruned" immediately following
that bloom. They can be "shaped" at any time of the year if life or limb
are in peril. It's not quite too late in most of the country to do a serious
cutback on a a rambler, as there is plenty of growing season left to produce
wood for next year's bloom. But, it will soon be too late.
Prune it after it blooms. My ever-blooming Don Juan gets pruned about
every two weeks, snipping back just to the 5-leaflet. Otherwise, it
will produce large rose hips rather than more buds. Sometimes the
canopy becomes too dense and I have to remove a few canes to improve
air circulation and light. Avoid pruning 8 weeks before the first
See my <http://www.rossde.com/garden/garden_rosepruning.html . As
I point out, ongoing grooming during the growing season -- removing
faded flowers, trimming stunted branches, etc -- is a form of
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
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