Perhaps the simplest way to remember basic pruning principles is to memorize the acronym P.R.U.N.E.
P: Prepare your plant by thoroughly assessing it. Inspect your rose bush – how did it do over the winter? Any snapped canes from wild winds or heavy snow? Is it a tangled mess? Too overgrown? Damaged? Do you see any diseased canes or problem areas?
R: Remove the 3 D’s: dead, diseased, and damaged canes. Basically, you’ll need to remove any canes that can’t be trained or saved (as painful as that may be – figuratively or literally).Note: Wear welders gloves and clothes you won’t mind getting snagged. While you are discerning which canes stay and which are cut, you also want to remove any canes that are crossing or too thin (skinnier than a pencil). Watch out for canes that have rubbed along a trellis – they could become susceptible to disease so trim any potential problem laterals/canes out as well.
U: Understand your rose bush and the look you want for the plant and how it fits in the overall look of the garden.
N: Nothing left behind -Be sure to gather and evict any remaining dead leaves, canes, or other debris that may be in or around the bush. Otherwise, you will be inviting disease and an unsightly mess of things.
E: Enjoy a healthy, blooming rose bush!
Keep checking Ever-Blooming Roses’ blog for more tips
on developing an ever-blooming rose garden!