Training a Climbing Cecil Brunner into a Tree?

peachymomo(Ca 8)May 2, 2012

I have successfully identified my first 'mystery rose' band from RVR, it's a Cecil Brunner Climber. I don't really have a place for it as a climber, so I was thinking it might be fun to try to train it into a standard. I read here that someone had either done that or seen one before and I thought it sounded beautiful.

Right now there are two long climbing canes growing up at opposite angles, I don't think either is suitable to be a 'trunk.' I was thinking that it would be easier to train if I cut it down to the ground and started with fresh basil shoots, knowing how vigorous Cecil Brunner is I thought it would probably be fine with such a severe pruning. But I can't do it without reinforcement from more experienced Rosarians. I wouldn't attempt it this late in the season, I would start the project next year in the early spring. I just had to pose the question so that I can think about it for a good long time before I actually take out my pruners...

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I hope you get some advice from more experienced rose folks who have made standards themselves. All I can tell you is that my Cl Cecile Brunner got all the way to the top of our 3 1/2 story roof climbing up our house - that is over 35 feet high, and it was 15 feet wide at least. Not sure it would be that easy to keep under control as a standard - maybe if you pruned it once a week?

(When I read the title of your post, I thought you meant training it to grow up into a large tree, which would be easy..)


    Bookmark   May 2, 2012 at 10:40AM
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Peachymomo, it could be done, but Jackie is on the right track that it's going to take a whale of a lot of maintenance to keep it that way. There are many growth buds in the crown of that plant and each cane has many of their own. For your goal, I would suggest taking a suitable cutting, removing all growth buds from it except the top soft tip, rooting it so it will grow as a continuous, single piece. As it grows taller, remove the buds along the trunk until it reaches the height you desire, then hack off the top. You'll have to frequently shape the head or it will get away from you, but at least you'll have a trunk without many side branches and all the "sucker" growth from the base of the plant. Kim

    Bookmark   May 2, 2012 at 11:18AM
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