SHOP PRODUCTS
Houzz Logo Print
coriannh0uzzviolatedmyprivacy

Stagger Pruning Climbing Roses

I’m planning on stagger pruning my climbing roses this year (and also the roses I’m just growing as climbers).

Ok... so are you wondering what’s stagger pruning? According to horticulture week, stagger pruning is “splitting the height of the plant into thirds, pruning approximately 30 per cent of each third, starting at the bottom third. Once complete, tie in the new growth as horizontally as possible. This will encourage flowering shoots to break from the base of the plant, which will reward you with beautiful flowers from the bottom right to the top the following year.”

Alright knowledgeable rose friends... tips on timing for this? I’m thinking the timing for each section should be 2 weeks to a month apart? Any other tips? Thank you!!!!!!


Comments (15)

  • User
    6 years ago

    Yeah, I'd like to know that too... maybe it's 'Ferdinand Picard'..?..

    Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy thanked User
  • Related Discussions

    hard pruning climbing rose

    Q

    Comments (6)
    Then cut it back. Older canes on modern repeat blooming climbers don't produce as many roses as new canes, except on new laterals. Modern repeat bloomers flower on new wood. The only way you'll get lots of foliage on canes that have sparse foliage is by cutting back. I typically have to prune my climbers back each spring due to winter dieback. They produce lots of foliage and flowers each growing season. If this rose is an old garden rose (once blooming) wait until after it blooms then cut back as far a you wish. New growth will produce lots of foliage and the canes will produce flowers next year as normal.
    ...See More

    Climbing rose rejuvenation/hard pruning?

    Q

    Comments (1)
    If that were my situation I would start over. I'd do a little research and ask forum members about a very healthy rose for your climate zone and replant. You'll then have a rose you can enjoy from the time you plant it. Alfalfa meal or pellets is a great organic fertilizer for all roses, and it should help your new rose to sprout a lot of basal canes. Good luck! Ingrid
    ...See More

    Summertime pruning for climbing roses

    Q

    Comments (2)
    You only cut the laterals. I cut them down to the second leaf set, For a climber, less is more. you want to get the most flowers.
    ...See More

    Staggering climbing roses/multiple C.R.

    Q

    Comments (4)
    I have a yellow lady banks which grows 3 stories up my house, and a Cl Cecile Brunner next to it which does also. About 90% of the time, the CB comes into bloom just as the banksia is fading. I think there is a clone of Cl CB out there which re-blooms more reliably all summer. I think the pale yellow and the pale pink look great together when their bloom times overlap a bit. Jackie
    ...See More
  • Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    Isn’t it lovely? It’s Raspberry Cream Twirl (Florentina is photobombing in the back). RCT is one you may want to look into. Handled western sun during our crazy heat waves pretty well over the summer. Totally disease free foliage. Healthy growth, but also very manageable. Thick, waxy petals that handle dry heat pretty well. Easy to train. Not a lot of thorns.

    I have mine along a fence interspersed with others...

  • suncoastflowers
    6 years ago

    Why wouldn't you do it all at once so that the new growth would be encouraged in all three sections of the Rose at the same time? It seems this would be the way to get a full flush. I guess that wouldn't be true if only part of the Rose was producing. I think then you would just prune the non blooming section.

  • Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    There’s so many different ways to prune aren’t there? I am of the frame of mind that each different way has benefits.

    So... as I understand it, the idea is that stagger pruning climbing roses helps to stimulate the rose to bloom more at different heights, from the bottom to the top... so more blooms... and different parts of the bush at different times.

    Here’s a quickie Peter Beales video on it... https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=kwOhak4HMFU

    I also like the idea because it will help me space it out to make the task more manageable... and I like the idea of doing the bottom third first to see what I really have to work with. :-)

  • smithdale1z8pnw
    6 years ago

    I think this may be a case of 2 countries divided by a common language. I believe he means to stagger the width of the rose gradually making it wider than staggering the pruning times. In the video it mentions pruning twice, once when dormant & once when new growth has started. This is how I prune my repeat-blooming climbers. I also prune awkward branches or anything I don't like all year long. I have 2 RCTs(2yrs old) that I'm training on a pergola, they get a lot of attention from visitors & they're only about 40' tall, love those blooms.

    Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy thanked smithdale1z8pnw
  • Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy
    Original Author
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Hmmm... thanks Smithdale. It could be... but, I’m pretty sure of my understanding of stagger pruning. Here’s the article from Hort Week (also from UK). https://www.hortweek.com/climbing-roses/ornamentals/article/1443975

    The quickie Peter Beales video seemed to coincide with the same meaning of the term to me.

    I could be wrong. Regardless, that’s what I’m doing (the way Hort week described it).

    So who’s done it and has tips?

  • Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    Smithdale did I read that right? I just realized what you wrote... are your RCTs really 40 ft tall? Mine have canes that are a little more than 12 ft long probably, about a year old in my yard.... So I guess it’s possible! Wow. Have photos?

  • smithdale1z8pnw
    6 years ago

    Mea culpa! 40".

    Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy thanked smithdale1z8pnw
  • Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy
    Original Author
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    :-) 40 ft of those blooms sure would be a sight though! It was a fun imaginary visual.

    :-)

  • User
    6 years ago

    Cori Ann, just to comment on your stagger pruning. I have to say I agree with Jane [smithdale] there, because we stagger prune all at the same time, we don't stagger the timing, by doing a bit one week, then doing another part 2 weeks later, it's all done at once, as the Beales video implied, and in the Hort Week article.

    The only way we stagger prune by date, is that because we are in such a windy climate during winter, it's usual to prune the tops of roses to prevent windrock, in November, as windrock can cause a lot of damage here, some people do all their pruning in November or January - all at once - so we might shorten the growth to produce a more stable plant for the winter, then finish off the pruning in Feb/March time, when we shape the plant, i.e. staggering the growth if necessary, but this will then be done all on the same day, or maybe the next day depending on the gardeners time and input of course, might even be a week later, but the intention is to prune all during the same period..

    ..there is no intention to stagger the dates of pruning deliberately to produce more rose blooms, which is what I think you're intending to do and may be suitable for your climate, but by staggering the growth pattern as shown in the Beales video, keeping some shoots short near the base, then going upwards and outwards, in layers is what we try to do mostly. I make no claims at being an expert at it, but try to conform to that wherever possible.

    To sum up, I prune all my roses in November to prevent windrock, just the tops. I prune again in late Feb, at that time I shape and train the rose by staggering the growth from top to bottom. Then feed and mulch, all on the same day if I have the time. That's it then until summer pruning after the first flush.

    Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy thanked User
  • Curdle 10a (Australia)
    6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    You could get experimental and try both ideas, in different sections; just make notes where you did what, ( this is my failing- I know different methods were tried, but seem to lose the notes as to exactly when it was done, grr) and see what turns out best.

    Your conditions are going to be different than they are in the UK anyways, so you might hit on something that works for you. And report back! hehe

    That Raspberry cream Twirl looks lovely!

    Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy thanked Curdle 10a (Australia)
  • fragrancenutter
    6 years ago

    It's an interesting idea but I can't see it being practical with my climbers because I cut off all older canes after I defoliate all the branches and then arrange them back onto the wall. Some high canes are lowered to become lower canes etc so it's too hard not to do it in one go. I also like the look of a whole wall covered in flowers rather than in sections. But that's just a matter of personal taste.

    Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy thanked fragrancenutter
  • Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    Great feedback everyone.

    I must be totally misunderstanding the concept due to my climate.

    Is the idea to only defoliate/prune 30% from each section, knees, waist/chest and head height? Then leave 60% foliage and unpruned?

    Or is it saying to prune 30% — of the size — off the bush from each section?

    Or something else entirely?

    Question.... in “stagger pruning” if you only prune 30% from each section.... then what about the rest? I must be missing something here because I read the article and understand Peter Beales differently... ????

    Let me explain a little more of my scenario (sorry for the length)...

    Ok here’s what I was thinking... most of my climbers that I was planning on doing this way are along a wired fence. The wires do a good job of visually separating the roses into lateral sections. I have a lot more than I hav ever had and it’s going to be a HUGE task this year. Roses don’t go dormant here, but I am planning on forcing them dormant by stripping off the leaves. They have been flowering well top to bottom this first year, but of course I want them to continue.

    I was thinking that if I begin at the bottom third, see what I have to work with as far as canes, then also begin defoliating, begin pruning about 30% in the other sections, making sure to leave some terminal cuts in the bottom (knee) section, some in the waist/chest section and some in the section taller than that, etc....

    Then move my focus up to the middle third over the next 2 weeks, while still making sure to check my previous or make some new terminal cuts in the knee section, chest/waist section and the section taller than that ... (it will probably take me 2 weeks to get through them all anyways)

    Then finish by focusing on the top third, again making sure to to check ormake some more terminal cuts in the knee section, chest/waist section and the section taller than that — and untie, take them down and retie them if necessary.

    I like the idea of spacing it out instead of doing it all at once because if we get another crazy weather year, the wrong weather at the wrong time can ruin a whole flush.

    Spaced out it will be an easier task and I bet I willl still have my wired fence covered in flowers, but it will be over a few weeks instead of all at once.

    My understsanding of stagger pruning must be wrong... but that was the idea I had about how to tackle pruning my bazillion climbing roses.

    Ok... so now... thoughts from you wonderful, knowledgeable rosarians who are constantly teaching me and helping me? :-)

    Thank you!

  • Cori Ann - H0uzz violated my privacy
    Original Author
    6 years ago

    Ok just to put it more into perspective.... I just counted them up and I think I have around 50ish climbing roses along the fenceline that will need to be pruned and retied... That’s not including the once blooming roses (which of course won’t need to be pruned like this). Happy face for lots of roses. :-) Sad face for lots of pruning and tying. :-(

Sponsored
Hoppy Design & Build
Average rating: 5 out of 5 stars9 Reviews
Northern VA Award-Winning Deck ,Patio, & Landscape Design Build Firm
Best of Houzz 2024: The results are in!