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Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

05a8474a 812c 4520 be32 a4228822c018 9665 000006fe01c2c74f file Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

Well that’s the first and only time that I shall use the word dead heading in this blog, it’s such a negative word so let’s use a more positive one that describes the old flowers perfect, spent bloom removal, see more up lifting straight away!

05a8474a 812c 4520 be32 a4228822c018 9665 000006fe01c2c74f file Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

I have also now labelled it as part of summer pruning of roses. I prefer to do the main prune during the late winter months but doing a little bit of summer pruning can help the plant to become stronger, healthier plants.

First of all, spent bloom removal is really just needed on repeat flowering roses to encourage more flowers to appear and also open a little quicker. With once flowering roses, there’s no real need to remove the old blooms but just a cosmetic reasons

Removing the blooms is pretty easy,

with the multi headed flowering type of roses you can thin out the spent blooms as they finish or wait until the whole floret has finish and then prune back down to the first full set of leaves. Why the first set of leaves? Well can it’s just helping to plant to maximise the water and nutrients by removing a section of wood that is going to die back down to that bud anyway. It is also well worth looking at the plant and seeing where it wants to be cut, some roses are very helpful and start sending up a new shoot where it wants to regrow.

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Removing the odd flower in the middle of a bunch of flowers

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Or taking the spent bloom down to the first full leaf

img 3036 Dead heading and summer pruning on rosesimg 3038 Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

This rose shows that perfectly and you can see I have trimmed it down to just above with new shoot.

I also tend to carry out a slightly heavier spent bloom removal or indeed summer pruning of roses that have produced stems that are to thin to hold the weight of the flowers. This is tends to happen on the once flowering roses and the English rose type and the simple way to reduce the weight on these branches, is to remove the spent bloom to a lower bud and even to thin out the branches as below. This help to lift the branches off the ground

img 3030 Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

A branch hanging over with the weight of the flowers

img 3032 Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

To help to reduce the weight I am thinning out some of the stems

img 3033 Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

And then trimming back the spent blooms a little harder

img 3035 Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

The finished branch with weight reduced

The other part of summer pruning is to remove any dead branches and any branches at the base of the plant that have simply done nothing since pruning in the winter. Yes it could be done in the winter but removing these bits of wood now again helps the plant to use the water and nutrients more efficiently. It also can improve air flow though the plant and help to reduce fungal infections img 3026 Dead heading and summer pruning on rosesimg 3025 Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

This is the type of growth I am talking about

img 3027 1 Dead heading and summer pruning on roses

The finished cleaned plant

Equipment wise I tend to use garden snips sold by Niwaki, to carry out spent bloom removal, mainly as the thinner points and lightness makes them ideal tool to use. secateurs are brilliant for the heavier form of summer pruning, I carry both using this great double holster

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Well I hope you enjoyed this blog on summer pruning of summer roses

 Dead heading and summer pruning on roses
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Pegging down roses

rosa magna charta1 Pegging down roses

rosa magna charta1 Pegging down roses

Rosa Magna Carta here flowering after being pegged down

Pegging down roses is a method used with some bush roses that produce large canes during the summer. These large tall canes can be pruned down in height to the same height of the bush but a far better way is to peg these long shoots down. This arched stem then produces a lot more flowers on the stem compared to just straight pruning. This happens of any rose stem that it is arched as it encourages the buds on top to break.

Not all roses that produce these large and tall canes in one growing season that come from the base of the rose, can be pegged down. Roses like Bourbons, Hybrid perpetuals, some moss roses like William Lobb, some of the English roses can work well as well. The only way to find out if your rose would be suitable for pegging down, is to grab the end and try it! Just grab the growing tip and slowly try and arch it over. If it snaps at the base or spilts, then the Rose isn’t suitable for pegging down! If it does then all well and good

img 2119 Pegging down roses

The next stage is to get the materials and equipment ready to start. I use bamboo canes (called sticks from now on to avoid confusion!) cut down to roughly 300mm but hazel will work as well. If you are in a stony site then a hammer may also be useful. Next is some 3ply green twine, I use Nutscene and lastly of course you need a pair of secateurs.

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Next I prepare the stick by wrapping the string on top of its self and tie it off with an over hand knot, leaving the tag at least 100mm long

img 2124 Pegging down roses

Next I tie the stick to the rose cane using an over hand knot.Then I pull the Rose cane over gently until I get the arch the right size and then push the stick into the ground and cut the string so it is tidy

img 2125 Pegging down roses

And the job is done! Other canes can be tied over and around as well, there’s no limit on how many you can peg down, just depends on the canes you have available.

You will get at least one years flowering like this, if you are lucky maybe 2, this one in my back garden, I redo each year.

There we have it, a nice and simple job to do and one that really does give a great effect if you add underplanting in between the canes as well.

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Rose and other workshops at Chawton House

img 2045 Rose and other workshops at Chawton House

Well I am delighted to announce that in conjunction with the Chawton House, we will be offering a series of garden workshops over the next year. These workshops are to be held is the beautiful surroundings of Jane Austin’s brothers Hampshire house, where Jane spent many happy days walking around the garden.

The first one on the 6th of March is looking at pruning rambling and climbing roses and the second on the 13th of March is looking at bush and shrub roses. These are all day course with a light lunch and refreshments part of the £75 ticket. There is a maximum of 15 tickets for sale for each day

img 3863 Rose and other workshops at Chawton House

I have many years of experience pruning roses after learning my trade working with the roses at Mottisfont Abbey Gardens. During these workshops, we shall be looking at the type of roses, the basics of pruning and the reasons behind it, a demonstration followed by a have-ago session with me on hand to advise you.

These workshops cover a wide range of topics looking at detail of getting the best from your roses, looking at feeding, underplanting, pests and diseases that may attack them and how to control them both organically and using chemicals. We all want Plants for nothing don’t we, here’s your chance to learn how to lift and divide Plants, learning how to divide herbaceous Plants with fibrous or more woody root plates. Unsure about what pest and diseases you have in your garden and how to treat them? Then we have a workshop for you, learn about the common pest and diseases in the garden and the ways to control them both chemically and organic!

Course

Length

Month

Date

Rose pruning-rambling and climbing roses

1day

Early March

6/3/2018

Rose pruning-bush and shrub

1 day

Mid March

13/3/2018

Lifting and dividing perennial plants

1/2 day

End of March

27/3/2018

Common pest and diseases in the garden

1day

May

15/05/2018

Herbaceous Plant staking

1/2 day

April

10/4/2018

Looking after roses

1/2 day

April

24/4/2018

So if you find your roses a rambling mess, no idea how to control your Hybrid Teas, please contact Chawton House to book yourself on these workshops, their details are as follows: info@chawtonhouselibrary.org or telephone: 01420 541010.