To prune or Not to prune??

ibheriFebruary 17, 2012

Every year, I get my rose plants pruned around this time of the year. Feb 14th they say is the time to trim the bushes in the Houston area. I know the HRS trimmed earlier this year but I thought I will wait till my usual time and now I am seeing buds. We have had such a mild winter, I think the rose plants are getting ready for their spring flush. What do I do? Do I go ahead and prune them irrespective of the nice buds?

I don't plan to prune Dutchess De Brabant, Archduke Charles or Mrs. Dudley cross. They are still very small. Dutchess De brabant maybe close to 2 yrs old.

My Austins are just over a year old, they are pretty big plants and I think need a pruning.

Please advise.

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lou_texas(8a N Central TX)

I'm just south of Dallas and my roses have put on a lot of new growth and some have buds so I'm thinking this through too. I've decided to prune anything that's needed and not worry about losing any of the new growth. We'll get more new growth in March and April anyway so I think it's important to shape or remove anything needing it. Of course, we may get a norther that will freeze any growth stimulated by the pruning, but a norther would freeze the new growth that we now have so I think I'll just keep to the mid-Feb pruning plans.

I also need to move a few plants which I'm going to try to get done in the next few days. Wish I'd done it sooner the way everything is sprouting, but better now that after we get a couple weeks of pre-summer warmth. Crazy weather makes decisions iffy, but oh well.

I wish you well. Lou

    Bookmark   February 17, 2012 at 11:33AM
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Every Winter when I prune I have to cut off not only buds but open blooms. Over half of my roses have blooms on them 12 months of the year - not unusual for a warm climate. I keep a bucket of water near me, and put any pretty ones in there for bouquets in the house. Been doing this for 23 years with no problems.


    Bookmark   February 17, 2012 at 12:05PM
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A sigh of relief seeing your replies. Thank you :)

    Bookmark   February 17, 2012 at 12:21PM
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I have the same issue with pruning this time of year as my roses (mostly teas and chinas) have plenty of blooms on them now. I hate cutting buds and blooms off but it does seem to encourage a big spring bloom (March and early April here). I do like Jackie and put the pretty ones in water for a bouquet.

I pruned Mons Tillier (who seems to love my climate) about 2 weeks ago and I noticed yesterday he is FULL of new growth. He will bloom nonstop (except for our summer months); the most floriferous rose I've ever seen.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2012 at 12:49PM
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Good information, thank you!

    Bookmark   February 17, 2012 at 3:52PM
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seil zone 6b MI

the weather's been strange but in the long run I think it's probably best to keep to your regular routines. Roses are survivors and should do just fine in any event. Plus you get to cut yourself some beauties to enjoy inside!

    Bookmark   February 17, 2012 at 5:14PM
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Campanula UK Z8

yep, even over here, I often cut off lots of lovely new growth (when I bother to prune, that is) and the clematis are even worse. Still, off with their heads - there is plenty more of that to come.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2012 at 9:37AM
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Hello all, I'm still trying to understand pruning and I'm curious, what classes of OGRs and antiques do all of you prune this time of year, and how old and/or large did you let them get before you started pruning in early spring? Will you prune again later this year? What are your reasons for pruning, other than removing dead/diseased/twiggy growth? Thanks in advance for sharing.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2012 at 7:27PM
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I mainly prune to encourage new growth and blooms, to remove any dead wood and shape up the plant. I also believe it improves air circulation. I am hestitant to prune my Tea's and China's. One reason is becuase they are very young and I also read that they do better without much pruning. I do it only during Feb, but I know some others do a light pruning before the fall flush.

I am looking fwd for some feedback from others as well to your very good question.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2012 at 12:05PM
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I don't prune mine much, mostly just taking out dead wood and taking the tops off of the bushes. It does seem to stimulate growth and blooms. I prune only my older bushes, not my younger ones. By older I mean probably about 3-4 years old. Younger than that I don't really prune much at all. I have mostly teas and chinas.

My older teas that I prune a little in October or so and in January are Maman Cochet, Catherine Mermet, Mons Tillier, Mme Joseph Schwartz. I also trim back Alister Stella Gray because he is such a wild boy in my garden.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2012 at 1:02PM
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Thank you, that's helpful! Maybe this 'bump' will get some more folks to chime in too.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2012 at 9:48AM
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