Forum home Problem solving

Pruning roses

Is it safe to start pruning roses back now? My neighbour has done his as he does every year at this time but all I can find on the internet is February. 

I do have some flowers left on a couple of mine but far and few between


  • NollieNollie Girona, Catalunya, Northen SpainPosts: 3,697
    There is no harm in a light tidy up now, trimming back any crossing or wayward branches that might whip around in the wind and damage the bush. Roses store the energy they need over winter in their canes, though, which is why the main pruning is usually left until February. 
  • stuarta99stuarta99 Posts: 92
    Ok ta, might just tidy them up but not go as crazy as my neighbour which is like a few inches off the base. Couple still flowering
  • amancalledgeorgeamancalledgeorge South LondonPosts: 1,541
    The neighbour must have control issues  :)
    To Plant a Garden is to Believe in Tomorrow
  • stuarta99stuarta99 Posts: 92
    Oh yes, always remember when we first moved in, I did see him in the garden at night cutting the lawn with scissors lol
  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 14,635
    Depends on what sort of roses you have.
    Hybrid tea roses cut down hard in March. Old fashioned shrub roses just need  a tidy up. Ramblers flower next year on this years wood, so  just remove wood that has already flowered this year.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • stuarta99stuarta99 Posts: 92
    edited 17 October
    Ok thanks. I've got a mixture. Got 5 in the front garden, 1 I know is a hybrid and the other is a shrub. Another I think is a shrub rose because it just goes crazy big no matter what I do with it. For now I've just deadheaded and maybe gone back a bit further but the crazy big one still has lots of buds and the shrub one has a bud and couple of new shoots
  • NollieNollie Girona, Catalunya, Northen SpainPosts: 3,697
    stuarta99 said:
    Oh yes, always remember when we first moved in, I did see him in the garden at night cutting the lawn with scissors lol
    😆 Definitely control issues there! His poor roses, if his are hybrid teas they are tough plants and will recover, even of he whacks them down to the ground at the wrong time of year, but they will unnecessarily struggle and he probably has to force-feed them back into growth in early Spring. Still, no lower than 6” from the ground is the usual advice.

    With your shrub roses, pruning is trickier if you don’t know what they are. As fidgetbones says, old fashioned (heritage/antique varieties) roses only need a light trim, as many flower on old wood, so prune them too hard and you could lose flowers the next year. Modern shrub roses (themselves hybrids, sometimes a hybrid crossed a hybrid tea, the lines have blurred considerably) can be pruned a bit harder, by up to a half. Your crazy big one might be a large, modern shrub and if you have pruned it back before and it’s still flowered afterwards that might be the case, but until you know for sure, proceed with caution. When they are in their full glory next summer, post photos of the overall plant, foliage and blooms and those good at rose ID on here might be able to tell you.
  • stuarta99stuarta99 Posts: 92
    Well I know my Hybrid one is called Rachel because we got it when my gran passed who was called Rachel, another called My Girl, again planted for a reason. The bushy one is this one, although twice the size now. This is from a few years ago and despite cutting it back to no less than 6 inches, it bounces back huge each year. 

    Do have a delicate one which was sold as a Somme Poppy rose in Sainsbury's . 2 others one is crazy tall and another which is quite short.

    Then have a few in pots at the back, one new one I think was simply called white rose
  • NollieNollie Girona, Catalunya, Northen SpainPosts: 3,697
    Right, I don’t think you have any heritage varieties there, so no special pruning requirements! Never heard of a rose called Somme Poppy, but if it’s from Sainsbury’s it will be likely modern, don’t think they sell old roses. The rose in your photo looks very like a modern Floribunda which can also be pruned hard if you want (personally, I don’t) and if it’s survived the 6” treatment before, that’s probably what it is. If it wants to be big it wants to be big, though, so maybe just accept it’s never going to be compact. It looks irritatingly familiar but sorry, I don’t recognise it.
  • stuarta99stuarta99 Posts: 92
    That's cool thank you. I think therefore I'll hang on for a few months then if that's the best suggestion
Sign In or Register to comment.