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Training a climbing rose onto an obelisk

Happy Friday all!

Earlier this year I found a Pilgrim climbing rose in a pot at the back of the garden. It was a bit of a tangled mess when I found it, but cleaned it up, and glad to say it looks like it’s just about to start flowering. Thinking way ahead, I’d like to train in onto an obelisk. Am I right in saying I’d start doing this around Feb/March 2021? This is the kind of thing I’m considering,

Would I need to think about changing the pot? It’s around 40cm wide, and same depth. 

Here are some pictures... Any other tips would be much appreciated...



  • MarlorenaMarlorena Posts: 7,908
    Hello Brixton Gardener... I used to live in Balham... Dornton Road, in case you know it..

    I use that company for obelisks,, really good...
    Your rose is a very tall growing variety that really would benefit by being planted in the ground... do you plan to do that next winter?   it will be difficult to get it out of that pot, because those bulbous pots are a tricky shape to remove something from.. you may well have to bust the pot..

    It will never reach its potential in that pot.. it's a rose capable of some 10 to 12 feet … and you're not going to get that contained... eventually it will need repotting and other maintenance... 
    ...but sure, get an obelisk for it, for the future, whatever you plan to do.. the taller the better if in the ground...  

    East Anglia, England
  • FireFire Posts: 17,116
    You could plant it any time (someone will corrert me if I'm wrong). I have a Pilgrim planted three years ago and it's now to six foot and is busting out all over. It is a big rose and, as M says, witll be happier in the ground. Just give it loads of water over the summer and organic matter - manure (if you have it) or compost.
  • Hey Marlorena. I know it well, I used to live near the Nightingale in Clapham South up until last November.

    Thank you both for your tips. It was inherited with the new house, and my guess is it’s been in that pot for 2-3 years. Figured it would be happier in the ground. I’ll take care of it over this summer, then make a plan for moving it while it’s dormant, and training it over a 180cm obelisk. 

    How do you go about breaking the pot? Big whack with a hammer? Would rather not as it seems wasteful, but don’t want to damage the roots unnecessarily. 
  • MarlorenaMarlorena Posts: 7,908
    ...if you leave it until the autumn, you might be able to wrench the rose out of the pot without damaging the pot... it won't matter so much then if you damage the roots as it will be going into dormancy for the winter, so it's not so great an issue then if you have to be rough with it... but I've broken quite a few pots in my time... if necessary I use a hammer, one good blow tends to do the job but obviously it's best if you can avoid this... best of luck.. !..
    East Anglia, England
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,195
    Far too nice a pot to want to smash it. I would try watering it well, laying the pot on its side with someone holding it and then see if you can ease/pull it out.  Hope it works.
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • edhelkaedhelka Posts: 2,331
    It's a pot worth £80-£100 with a rose worth £20 (ok maybe more in this size but still less than the pot). I would do it in winter/late autumn without damaging the pot. The rose will be fine with some root pruning.
  • Thanks for the advice everybody. I’ll wait until Autumn and try and tease it out of the pot. In terms of putting it in the ground, I’m assuming I just need to dig a hole approximately the size of the pot an move the rose in? Maybe working in some compost and feed?
  • MarlorenaMarlorena Posts: 7,908
    ...yes that's right... best of luck getting it out of the pot... 
    East Anglia, England
  • newbie77newbie77 Posts: 1,727
    I would remove it from pot in winter. Water the pot a lot, then once soil feels soft lay it side remove as much soil as i could,  again water and repeat. Basically try to washout almost all the soil and then tease out roots. 
    South West London
  • Thanks @newbie77

    Why winter specifically? My thought was around September/October time before the ground gets very cold would help in establishing a new root structure prior to winter. Not completely clued up in this though.
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