Spring flowering roses such as Cecil Brunner, Dorothy Perkins and banksia roses are best pruned after flowering.
Begin by removing any dead branches, along with any old branches that look dull and grey. Remove cross growing limbs and any branches that are thinner than the thickness of a pencil. Reduce the remaining stems by half and prune each one just above a plump, outward facing bud. Prune with the lowest point of cut at the top of the bud and slant upwards at approximately 45 degrees. Also remove any suckers that may be growing from beneath the graft union. Do not remove shoots which grow from the bud union, these are called water shoots and they develop into new flowering stems.
Spray your roses with Lime Sulfur IMMEDIATELY after pruning and spray again with Copper Oxychloride 3-4 weeks later. Apply Richgro Rose Fertilizer to give them a healthy spring boost.
· Old fashioned roses can be left unpruned other than a tidy up and thinning when necessary.
Climbing roses are best trained to a horizontal position to promote flowers, remove dead wood and reduce good canes to half.
· Any old neglected roses can be rejuvenated with hard pruning by reducing the branches back to 3 or 4 buds. For vigorous rose types only a light pruning is necessary, reduce the stems by approximately one-third their length.
· Apply Richgro Rose Food in spring (Aug/Sept) mid-summer (Nov/Dec) and autumn (Feb/March). A light dressing of Richgro granulated Sulphate of Potash and Manutec Sulphate of Iron (10g per square metre) mid spring (Oct/Nov) will produce healthy blooms. Slow release fertilizers such as Richgro Blood n Bone or Rose Osmocote can also be applied.
· Summer prune (Jan/Feb) - cut out any dead wood and follow with an application of rose fertilizer to promote the autumn flush of blooms. Snipping off the spent blooms from your rose bush will help promote more blooms and a healthier bush.