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Climbing Rose

Advice please.

I have a MADAME ALDRED CARRIERE rose which has not been pruned for a couple of years.At the moment it is a big MESS.

I am confused at how much to remove.I have read in the Dr.DG Hessayon.The rose expert just to remove dead and exhausted wood.

I am in the south west the climate is mild not cold. 


  • Look for any dead wood - remove it, cutting it out completely, neatly back to its origin. Remove any spindly weak growths that probably produced flower last year, but are are too weedy to be of use to support good new growth.  That's a start. Look at the rest. You want a framework of strong stems, evenly spaced. Twisted or ones fighting for the same space might need to be reduced, or one removed altogether so that there's good airflow all through the plant. Then, let it do its thing into summer before (about July time) pruning out some of this year's old flowered growth, carefully tying in any new growth (which won't yet have flowered) which in time will replace older weaker wood.  It's all about continuing a succession of new wood to replace older 'spent' growth, keeping the plant healthy.  Start a regime of feeding in about March/April. Plenty of water in the drier months AND during dry spells. 


  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 26,221

    You want to remove dead, broken or spindly growth and feed as H-C advises.  The object is to leave yourself with a framework of horizontal or diagonal stems from which new shoots will grow and flower.

    The RHS offers this advice for regular annual pruning but also restorative pruning for neglected roses - 

    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
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