Gardening: Monty Don shares tips on pruning roses in October – ‘pruned hard now’

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Monty Don, best known for Gardeners’ World, often shares gardening tips within his monthly blogs. This month, he told gardeners to prune back their climbing roses as well as tips on how to do so.

Pruning is the practise of selectively removing plant parts including branches and buds.

It can help to manipulate the plant for landscape purposes as well as encourage new growth.

Other benefits of pruning include deterring pest and animal infestation as well as promoting the plant’s natural shape and healthy growth.

While pruning can be done throughout different times of the year, Monty told blog readers that now is the time to prune back climbing roses.

Posting advice on his October blog, Monty Don recommended to prune climbing roses now.

He wrote: “Prune climbing roses. Climbing roses flower on shoots grown the same spring so they can be pruned hard now.”

“Rambling roses on the other hand produce their flowers on shoots grown the previous summer so they should only be pruned immediately after flowering.

“Start by removing any damaged or crossing growth or any very old wood which can be pruned right back to the ground.

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“The main stems should be fanned out at an equidistance as horizontally as possible, tying them to wires or a trellis.

“Then all the side shoots growing from these main stems – which produced this year’s flowers – can be reduced to a short stub of a couple of leaves.

“The effect should be a tracery of largely horizontal growth with pruned side-shoots running along their length.

“Finally make sure it is all tied firmly in to avoid winter damage.”

Strong winds can damage the climbing roses which is why it is advised to tie them securely.

It can be hard to distinguish between a climbing rose and a rambling rose.

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) said: “The easiest way to tell the difference is to take note of the flowering time.

“A climbing rose will repeat-flower almost all summer and well into autumn, while a rambling rose usually flowers only once, normally around June.”

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Gardeners often face multiple problems when it comes to roses as they can suffer from a range of different problems.

This includes replant disease, rose dieback, rose black spot, rose powdery mildew and one rust.

Rose black spot is a common problem which sees the rose faced with a fungal disease where purple or black spots develop on the leaves, causing them to drop.

To help get rid of the issue, the RHS recommends collecting and destroying fallen leaves in the autumn, or burying under a layer of mulch.

The website reads: “Prune out all stem lesions in spring before leaves appear. 

“These actions will help delay the onset of the disease, but are of limited value because spores are bound in on wind-blown rain from elsewhere.”

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