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Cutting roses in spring and autumn: what you should consider

If you want to cut roses, you should do so in spring and autumn. The right time for pruning the roses is extremely important so that a few months later many flowers will sprout again. We give you an overview.

If you want to cut roses in the garden, it depends on the right time. Ideally, you can prune the roses twice a year, first in spring and later in fall. By pruning the roses in spring or spring, the plants can put their energy into new blooms (the so-called “after bloom”).

However, there are also some roses that only bloom once a year. A pruning in the spring for a second flowering is therefore not necessary for them. They get by with a single pruning in the fall.

Pruning roses in spring and autumn: when is the best time?

Cutting roses in spring and autumn what you should consider - Cutting roses in spring and autumn: what you should consider
Pruning roses in spring and autumn: the right time is important.
(Photo: Sven Christian Schulz / Utopia)

The exact time when you should cut the roses in the garden depends on the weather:

  • Pruning roses in spring/spring: You can cut back the roses as soon as no more severe frost is to be expected from mid-March to early April.
  • Pruning roses in the fall: Early October to late November is the right time for pruning. You can tell when all the rose blossoms have faded and the leaves are already beginning to wither. Ideally, the days are slowly getting colder, but there is still no frost at night.

Basically, roses need a very strong pruning. Then, a few months later, they will sprout again with full force. However, how hard you should cut the roses depends on the type of rose. You can leave some of the classes of roses a few inches off the ground, while others need almost no pruning at all.

Experts speak of “eyes” when it comes to roses, which they use as a guide when pruning. Eyes are knobs on the rose branch, from which new shoots will later grow. When pruning the roses, you should always start above an eye.

Autumn and spring: cut back roses – how much?

1656854218 678 Cutting roses in spring and autumn what you should consider - Cutting roses in spring and autumn: what you should consider
Pruning back roses: Differently depending on the class of roses.
(Photo: Sven Christian Schulz / Utopia)

In the different classes of roses, the pruning sometimes also differs between annual and perennial flowering plants:

  • climbing roses (annual): Prune the roses back to about half their original size. If older shoots are still growing near the ground, cut them off completely.
  • climbing roses (perennial): Cut off the roses above the third eye. This corresponds to about 15 to 20 centimeters above the ground. Older shoots near the ground should be completely removed (instructions: Pruning climbing roses).
  • shrub roses (annual): Remove only old and diseased shoots of the rose. A larger pruning is only necessary if the roses appear bare and have hardly any strong shoots. Then you can cut them back to half their size (instructions: Cut shrub roses).
  • shrub roses (perennial): Shorten the roses by a third of their height. You should completely remove old shoots (three to five years).
  • Bedding and hybrid tea roses: Cut down strong shoots to about five buds and weak shoots to about three buds (about 15 to 20 centimeters high). Older shoots near the ground should be completely removed.

Tips for pruning the roses

You should pay attention to this when cutting the roses:

  • To cut roses, you should use sharp scissors.
  • Also, when cutting the roses, make sure to always cut at an angle. Then no water collects on the interface and fungi and other pathogens have a harder time.
  • The best place to cut a rose is about five millimeters above an eye.
  • You can recognize frost damage to the rose by the brownish discoloration of the branches and the pith. Cut them back until the pith turns white in color.
  • Wild shoots form again and again directly at the root. Flowers and leaves are significantly smaller and draw a lot of energy from the plant. Cut them off near the root, removing some of the soil around the root ball.

After pruning the roses in spring, you should fertilize the plants:

Read more gardening tips for your roses at Utopia:

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