Step by step guide on how to Prune Roses (6 easy steps)

It’s time for your winter rose pruning, which means rose rejuvenation time is here and we have the tips and equipment that you need to prune your roses with ease and gusto!

From late July until mid-August is the optimal time to prune your roses. Pruning allows for your roses to receive a much-needed trim that will not only ensure hearty growth and exquisite blooms into the summer season but will also assist in maintaining the finest appearance and keeping your rose bushes strong.

Pruning can be a largely enjoyable task with the right equipment. Ensure that you have a sharp pair of secateurs, gardening gloves, a trusted organic insecticide or insecticide and fungicide cocktail (visit Lifestyle Home Garden for advice on what is available), and an organic rose fertiliser.

Watch our step-by-step rose pruning YouTube video, to learn how to prune your roses with ease:


Rose Pruning Step 1:

How to prune roses (step 2)
Step 2 – Clean Up

Cut the rose bush to hip height at approximately equal heights (About two-thirds of the rose bush should be cut off)

Rose Pruning Step 2:

Remove all dead, damaged and spindly branches at their bases. Make a clean cut at a slight angle, ensuring that the thicker blade of the secateurs or lopper is pointed away from you to prevent bruising of the stem.

Rose Pruning Step 3:

Remove crisscrossing branches that cross the center of the plant to create an open ‘vase’ shape.

Rose Pruning Step 4:

How to prune roses (step 5)
Step 5 – Remove old stems

Cut remaining branches to knee height (+- 40cm)

Rose Pruning Step 5:

Remove older, grey stems at their bases and only retain +- 4 strong stems arranged in a cup shape. Cut away any side branches and fork on these remaining stems and remove all leaves.

Rose Pruning Step 6:

How to prune roses (step 6)

Spray way a trusted organic insecticide or fungicide as prevention against insect and fungal infestation of the ‘wounds’.

Once your roses have been pruned it is important to give them a little bit of TLC. Water your rose bushes thoroughly fertilise with a balanced rose fertiliser or organic 3:1:5 fertiliser and spread a generous layer of compost or mulch around the bushes, taking care to keep the base of the bush clear of organic matter.

Another light pruning can be carried out in January to encourage another flush of flowers.

Keep deadheading your rose bushes throughout the year to encourage flowering.

Download our Rose Pruning Guide (6 easy steps) pdf.

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