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When To Trim Rose Bushes (and when to avoid)

In our last article, we had a discussion on – how to trim rose bushes. But another thing that is equally important to know is when to trim rose bushes. This very post is completely dedicated on that topic. In this post, we’ll gather knowledge about the timing of trimming those bushes.

When to trim Rose Bushes

Why prune rose bushes?

Plants need proper care to maximize their blossom. There are different ways of nurturing different kinds of plants. One of the most effective nurturing processes for rose bushes involves trimming the plants routinely.

The process of trimming bushes is called pruning. We trim rose bushes for some good underlying reasons. Here are some of them.

Catalyzing growth:

Proper trimming at the proper time promotes the growth of rose bushes. It helps the plants to grow new stems and leaves.

Producing more buds:

The production of buds is maximized by routine pruning. Maintaining a good shape of the plants by pruning helps the plant focus on growing more flower buds than growing canes.

Prevent damages and pests:

Trimming off the affected areas of a plant by pruning helps to minimize the impact of pests and damage on it. Pruning also helps to remove old parts of the tree and improve the flow of air in between the canes of the plants.

Therefore it is quite important to trim your rose buses timely. Here are the details about the ideal timing for pruning rose bushes.

Ideal timing of pruning rose bushes –

The most appropriate time to trim rose bushes is early spring. Rose plants start to produce buds in spring after they escape the chilling winter.

In early spring, the new buds tend to grow from the old canes of the previous year. it has been noticed that old canes generally produce less number of buds compared to new canes. Additionally, the size of the buds is also smaller compared to buds from the new canes.

Trimming the one-year-old canes makes it easy for the new canes to grow and the new canes then take charge of growing the buds for the upcoming season.

In winter the plants get damaged by the weather which prevents the growth of the plant. Trimming removes those damaged canes.

The problem of trimming after early spring:

Rose plants start to produce new buds from the end of winter and most of the buds emerge within the early weeks of spring. If you start the main pruning in the midway of spring, it may not be quite fruitful. This act can result in the cut of new stem cells resulting in an even lesser number of flowers.

What to do while pruning

Trimming Rose Bushes During Early Spring

Look for any dead cane or bud or wood inside the bush. If found, cut them and remove them from the bush. If you find any cane that has been attacked by pests and insects, remove them too.

A discolored cane indicates that either it is going to die very soon or has caught an infection. If you see any of these canes, don’t wait for them to die first and then get removed. It is always recommended to remove any de-coloured cane to protect the perfect canes from catching insects.

The best angle to cut the stems is 45 degrees. Cutting the stems at that specified angle makes the water flow downwards which is particularly helpful for the tree.

Cut the stems right above the location where the bud is just sporting. The canes that are facing outwards from the bush are the ideals to cut. Use small hand sessions to perform this operation.

Shaping the bush:

One of the main reasons people prune rose trees is to give them a nice shape. The most commonly practised method is to keep the canes in the middle a little longer followed by a smooth radial gradient decrease in the height of the canes towards the outside.

Trimming Rose Bushes During Summer

Apart from Spring, we can also do some pruning during the summer after the major flowering session of spring is over. In summer, the trimming of rose bushes is not as intense as it is done in spring rather the summer pruning is mainly for maintaining the blooming of roses.

Trimming Rose Bushes During Autumn

After some minor trimming during summer, some rose plants grow large during the timespan of summer and autumn. That’s why it is recommended to run a trimming session in Autumn if you find some of the rose canes to be longer than the rest of the bush.

In both summer and autumn, you should always check for broken canes and wood, infected branches, and dead stems. Besides, run minor occasional trimming to maintain the shape of the bush.

When to avoid trimming rose bushes:

There are times, you should keep the plant away from those sharp blades, especially during the winter. During winter while the plants are already fighting with winter damage, an added damage of trimming to the bushes may result in less production of roses or can even kill the tree.


Selection of proper timing to trim rose bushes is extremely important for various reasons. Timely trimming not only improved the number of flowers but also boost the health of the trees. And we hope that from this comprehensive guide, you’ve found your answer to – when to trim rose bushes.

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