Roses – When To Prune In Mild Winter

Q: What is the best time to prune roses when we have had such a mild winter?

A: Late February seems right to me, even when a shrub rose has emerging leaves. I have two tips to keep in mind when pruning shrub roses. Number one, plan to reduce the size by about 50%. Unpruned roses won’t have a dense covering of flowers. Number two, make your cuts about a quarter of an inch above a bud that faces outward. This gives better air circulation through the shrub, which prevents disease and stimulates the production of more leaves which leads to more flowers.

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