Thursday, July 18, 2013

Rose pruning

I know this is not my first post about rose pruning. Probably won't be my last either.  I've learnt a lot through the years about this particular art and yes, anyone can prune a rose but to do it properly does require a bit of knowledge and practice.  Practice, practice and more practice! I used to hate rose pruning. I didn't respect the rose. I am not a fan of the flower (whaaaat? How can you be female and not like the flower?) and with a background in natives, I had like minded people around me who hated the rose too. Working as a gardener made me appreciate the humble rose. Its adaptation to any condition. Does well in our drought and frosts and is a very resilient plant. There are so many varieties and species, its hard to keep track. And the colours! The colours are wonderful. Again, not a fan of the perfume but I know there are differences within the species. Pests and diseases do like roses but they are managed. Old gnarly roses are wonderful. They are truly amazing. Rose pruning is an art. If you can prune a rose to give it more flourish and inflorescence the flowering season then you're doing something right. I learnt primarily from a mate who's in his 60s and has been gardening for 30+ years. I've now my own style but I've come to realise that there is a lot more to pruning than hacking into a rose.  Once you learn how to do something properly, its very hard to unlearn it and you're very aware when someone if doing it 'wrong' (and you want to 'fix' their prunes!) but like a lot of 'techniques' in the gardening world, everyone thinks their way is the best! And get really narky at you if you tell them they're doing it all ever you prune into a rose, please be careful! Make sure you are properly attired (long sleeves and heavy gloves) and have sharp tools. Make sure you discard the pruned off material properly. Another thing  I'd suggest is cleaning your tools between jobs. Anyway have fun with your rose pruning! :)