Climbing and Shrub Roses – Pruning

Q: I have climbing and shrub roses. Do I need to cut them back to short canes and mound mulch for the winter?

A: Unlike in the northern US, roses here don’t need much more than “neatening up” for winter. Secure loose canes on your climbers so they don’t flop in the winter wind. Remove straggly shoots on your shrub roses. There is no need to cover the whole plant with mulch. In fact, this will lead to problems because disease and rodents will attack your roses under the mulch during winter.

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