Flush out the flow­ers with a sum­mer cut

Life & Style Weekend - - GARDEN - with Angie Thomas

BE DOU­BLY re­warded by giv­ing your roses a sum­mer prune – a sec­ond burst of beau­ti­ful blooms in au­tumn and less prun­ing work come win­ter.

Jan­uary rose prun­ing

Win­ter is tra­di­tion­ally the time to give roses a thor­ough prune. How­ever, great re­sults can be achieved by also prun­ing roses in sum­mer. Not only does it pro­mote a fresh flush of new growth and flow­ers, it also helps to re­duce the amount of prun­ing needed in win­ter.

Rose prun­ing can ap­pear slightly daunt­ing, with thorny stems try­ing to at­tack you and not know­ing ex­actly how to go about it. So what’s the eas­i­est way to prune roses in sum­mer? Re­move around a third of all the growth. Don’t worry about which way the buds are fac­ing, just prune.

Sharp se­ca­teurs will re­ally help the prun­ing go smoothly – there’s noth­ing worse than bat­tling with rusty old and blunt se­ca­teurs.

Fiskars has a great pair of se­ca­teurs called the Quan­tum Pruner that can cut through stems up to 2.5cm in di­am­e­ter. It has sharp, pre­ci­sion-ground blades, a rust-re­sis­tant, low-fric­tion blade coat­ing to make prun­ing easier and tough all-nat­u­ral cork han­dle pads to re­duce weight and cre­ate a com­fort­able grip.

After prun­ing, give roses a sum­mer clean-up spray with Yates Lime Sul­fur to con­trol the sap-suck­ing pest two-spot­ted mite.

And to en­cour­age the new leaves and flow­ers that will de­velop after the sum­mer prune, feed each week with liq­uid plant food. Find one that is rich in potas­sium.

Angie Thomas is a hor­ti­cul­tur­ist at Yates.

PHOTO: CHE CHAP­MAN

Give your roses a prune in sum­mer to pro­mote au­tumn growth.

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