Pruning Knockout Roses

Learn How and When to Trim and Prune the Knockout Rose

pruning knockout roses

Questions about pruning knockout roses?  Are you searching for information to learn how and when to trim and prune the knockout rose growing in your garden?  The Knockout roses are Shrub roses, and are trimmed the same way you would trim a typical Shrub rose.

Knockouts are considered maintenance free, but to get the best flowers out of the bush, you should know about pruning knockout roses.

Typically they are free flowering Shrub rose bushes, and produce the flowers freely without deadheading. It is recommended that they don’t require pruning. But……

If you live in a warm climate, you’ll soon be reaching for the pruning shears! These roses can grow quite large in the right climate, and can quickly grow out of bounds. By trimming Knockout roses, you will rejuvenate the bush, make it look better, and allow it to produce more flower buds.

 

Trimming the bush  keeps it looking neat and tidy, and the size you want it to be. Pruning will be very beneficial to the bush as far as flowering goes.

The first year after planting, should be “prune free”, allowing it to grow freely, and establish a healthy root system. Of course any broken, or dead or diseased canes can be removed.

From the second year on, the best time for pruning your knockout roses is in early spring, when they begin to bud out. This is also the time to give them their first fertilizer for the season.

I do not recommend you do any more pruning on your knockout roses late in the season. Pruning encourages new growth, and any new growth late in the season could be damaged by early frost, and would be more susceptible to insect and disease problems.


pruning and deadheading roses

Tips for Pruning Knockout Roses

For correct Knockout roses pruning, you should start by;

 ~Removing damaged or dead wood.

 ~Shape the rose plant according to the desired size and shape.

 ~Cutting out crossing or inward facing canes will open up the bush, for a nicer look. Cutting out canes that cross are a good idea for many reasons: By rubbing together, the canes can open up wounds that will cause disease problems. By cutting canes that cross, you allow air and light into the center of the plant, making a healthier rose bush.

 ~To encourage growth on laterals (branches) on older canes, cut them back by one third. Never remove the canes coming from the base of the plant, since these will become new canes with heavy blooms.

 ~Always prune before the plant flowers, (never after flowering, other than deadheading)

Don’t worry about “not knowing what you’re doing”, the Knockout rose is very forgiving, and will bounce back to reward you with lots more flowers!  Just pay attention to the timing of your pruning.

One of the major advantages of Shrub roses such as Knockout roses, is that they require little pruning.


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