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Old rose in an obelisk


We've recently moved house and have inherited a very old rose in an obelisk that needs some attention and I'm looking for some thoughts.  

The 7ft triangular obelisk is leaning perilously at about 15 degrees and I suspect is only prevented from toppling by the rose!  The ground has sunk away on one side - and is going to be a pain to shore up properly without removing the obelisk.  The rose looks fairly old to me, the stem (trunk?!) at the bottom must be nearly 3 inches thick, and it's happily reaching a good few feet out of the top of the obelisk. I guess it's not been pruned in a while!  The rose hasn't been trained around the obelisk, just up it, so they're not as entwined as they could be.

So, my question -  should I prune enough to get the obelisk off - realistically cut it back 3 or 4 stems at 3ft, or go for the drastic cut at 8 inches from the soil and hope it gets the hint at throwing up some new shoots?  What are people's thoughts?



  • batwood14batwood14 Posts: 193

    Hi Rachel,

    You can do two things, either prune it light to take some of the pressure from the obelisk. This would give you a chance to see what its like particularly if you have just moved in to your house and have not seen a full year of what and how your plants are. Or, you can prune it hard now and sort out the ground/obelisk. I would prefer the latter as roses always respond to hard pruning. This would allow you to kill two birds with one stone so to speak!

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