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Pruning Roses

In pruning roses, determine whether they bloom on canes arising each year from the ground or near the ground, or whether they make perennial tops; also form a clear idea whether an abundance of flowers is wanted for garden effects, or whether large specimen blooms are desired.

If one is pruning the hybrid perpetual or remontant roses (which are now the common garden roses), he cuts back all very vigorous canes perhaps one-half their length immediately after the June bloom is past in order to produce new, strong shoots for fall flowering, and also to make good bottoms for the next year's bloom.

Very severe summer pruning, however, is likely to produce too much leafy growth. In the fall, all canes may be shortened to 3 feet, four or five of the best canes being left to each plant. In spring, these canes are again cut back to fresh wood, leaving perhaps four or five good buds on each cane; from these buds the flowering canes of the year are to come.

If it is desired to secure fewer blooms, but of the best size and quality, fewer canes may be left and only two or three new shoots be allowed to spring from each one the next spring.

The rule in trimming all cane-bearing roses is, cut back weak growing kinds severely; strong growers moderately.

Climbing and pillar roses need only the weak branches and the tips shortened in. Other hardy kinds will usually need cutting back about one-fourth or one-third, according to the vigor of the branches, either in the spring or fall.

The everblooming or hybrid tea roses will need to have all dead wood removed at the time of uncovering them in spring. Some pruning during the summer is also useful in encouraging growth and flowers. The stronger branches that have flowered may be cut back one-half or more.

The sweet briers, Austrian and rugosas may be kept in bush form; but the trunks may be cut out at the ground every two or three years, new shoots having been allowed to come up in the meantime. All rampant growths should be cut back or taken out.

Watch the "Pruning Roses" video above for more information on when and how to prune your roses in your rose garden.