A rose is a rose is a rose is a rose-except when it comes to pruning. Pruning requirements for different types of roses vary.
The best time for roses is toward the end of the dormant season. In our area that is usually early February to early March. Basic objectives are to develop an attractive shaped plant and to encourage growth.
There are a few basic guidelines for all roses; remove all dead and diseased wood; weak, twiggy and crossing branches, opening up the center for air circulation.
There are Hybrid teas, Grandifloras, Floribundas, Climbers, ramblers, shrub roses, Antique roses and Standards (Tree Roses).
They all have basic needs, but there are a few differences in pruning.
Hybrid teas, Grandiflora, Floribunda: cut back to sound wood (still green). A convenient rule of thumb; don’t cut in to growth of the past season that is bigger around than a pencil.
Grandifloras are rather tall and are pruned higher. Polyanthas and Floribundas-remove the dead and injured wood. For masses of blooms, cut back less than Hybrid teas.
Climbers are pruned just after flowering in the spring, by cutting old canes back to the ground. This will leave room for new growth.
Prune with sharp and clean pruners, about 1/4” above an outward facing bud. This will leave the center open for air circulation, which causes less disease. Breaking or twisting a branch can injure the entire plant.
Wait until new growth begins to fertilize. Then feed at regular intervals.
Tip: This is the time to take rose cuttings for propagation.