Study the training and pruning in rose

Horticulture Guruji

Exercise 5

Study the training and pruning in rose

HORT 222

Objects of Pruning in rose:

  • To remove the unproductive growth, ensure production of a large number of strong and healthy shoots, which will bear flowers and improve the quality of blooms.
  • To force the strongest shoot bud to break in growth.
  • To keep the rose bush in proper shape and size.
  • To allow light and air to reach the center of plant
  • To encourage growth of new healthy shoots which bear more flowers than old branches.
  • The rose blooms harvested after pruning the bushes have longer stems than those cut from unpruned bushes.

Pruning time:

  • The best time of pruning is the period when the activity of the rose plant is least and the plant is at dormant to near dormant stage.
  • The most usual time for pruning is during October- November in Indo- Gangetic plains after the rains are well over and the cold season is approaching.
  • In Bangalore, pruning is done twice a year, just before two flower shows held during Republic day and Independence day.
  • Hybrid Teas are pruned 42 days before the flower show.
  • Floribundas are pruned 45 days before the flower show.
  • Three extra days are given for the clustering habit of flowers


Where and How to prune:

Every rose stem has eyes (buds) alternating on opposite sides, usually outward and inward. The basic rule in pruning is always to make the cut at about half a centimeter above a vigorous bud that points in the direction one desire the new shoot to grow. Since a bush rose is to be kept open in the center, the cut is made at an outward growing bud whereas in the case of a climbing rose, the pruning is done at a bud pointing more or less upwards. Whichever bud is selected, the cut should be slightly slanting. A horizontal cut retains moisture and, therefore is liable to cause fungal growth. While making the cut, care should be taken not to make it too high above the eye as there may be the chance of dieback of the shoot. If the cut is, on the other hand, very near the eye, the bud may die for want of sap flow. It is absolutely necessary to cut sharp and clean. Broken tissues, bruises, or hanging shreds of bark are an invitation to pests and diseases.

Types of Pruning: There are three types of pruning – light, moderate and hard.

  • In the light pruning, the healthy shoots, left after thinning of diseased and unwanted portion, are cut either at the second or third eye (bud) immediately below the flower-bearing footstalk.
  • Moderate pruning is done by cutting back the ripe main and lateral shoots of the previous year’s growth at an outward growing eye, at about half the length of the growth.
  • Hard pruning consists of keeping only three or four shoots of the last year and heading back at about three or four eyes from the base.
  • All weak, diseased, dead, and slender growing and overlapping branches are to be completely removed. Generally strong and sturdy plants are pruned lightly, moderate growers, moderately and weak plants relatively hard.
  • If the soil is sandy and the nutrient level in the soil is not high, pruning should be light. In the case of heavy and fertile soils, pruning may be a little harder.
  • Pruning of one-year-old rose plants: In the first year of planting, the pruning is done to give a definite shape to the plants and the operation will vary according to the class of the rose. For plants in Hybrid Tea and Floribunda groups, first of all, weak, dead and crowded branches should be removed from the base. The remaining healthy shoots should be cut back to less than half the length of the shoot.
  • Climbing and rambling roses do not require any pruning except the removal of weak growth and unhealthy, dead, and interlaced twigs.
  • The Polyanthas are pruned lightly whereas the miniatures are generally not pruned.


Hybrid Teas: Hybrid Teas are always pruned harder. Remove all the dead, weak, damaged, and crossing shoots from their point of origin. It is useful to retain only four or five healthy basal shoots and remove the remaining ones from their bases. Hard pruning i.e. cutting above three or four eyes from the base reduced the number of flowers per bush but increased the flower size and length of the stem.

Floribundas: The main object of pruning roses of this class is the production of abundance flowers with mass effect in the bed. This trend can be encouraged by the removal of older growths at every opportunity and the young growths are shortened by about a third or half of their height. It is necessary to remove the mass of twiggy growth at the ends of the main stems. Thus light or moderate pruning is the general recommendation of obtaining a higher yield of flowers.

All Types of Horticultural Crops