It’s time here on the Central Coast to prune our roses. This year most haven’t even gone dormant and some are already leafing out. But they still need a good pruning if they are going to do well in the coming season. If reading about pruning tea roses seems complicated, these HANDy tips might help you better visualize and remember what you need to do. So grab some clean, sharp secateurs (pruners to us Yanks) and get pruning.
Cut off anything that is smaller than a ladies little finger (or pencil). These canes will be unproductive so there is no point in keeping them.
Tip 2: Cut out canes that cross over or into other canes, leaving just one cane.
Tip 3: Your goal is to leave three to five large healthy canes in growing in an open vase shape. You want the center to be open and for there to be room between the canes.
Tip 4: Make your cuts are a 45 degree angle. How to get an approximation of a 45 degree angel without a protractor? Make an “L” shape with your fore finger and thumb. That’s a 90 degree angle. Now bring your thumb up half way. Now you’ve got 45 degrees.
Tip 5: In the summer, shorten and deadhead canes by cutting down to the highest node with a grouping of 5 leaflets whenever you cut some roses for an arrangement.
Tip 6: It’s not only OK, but it’s good to cut out any dead wood.
Need more info? Check out these links:
Heirloom Roses Guide to Pruning. Great photos to guide you.
About.com on Pruning Roses. More info on why to prune.
Want to see what we got in at the nursery? Nipomo Miner’s Rose List 2017