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out of control

Posted by sjbaby 4 ( on
Thu, Feb 27, 14 at 2:47

5 yrs ago my hubby and kids got me a climbing rose for mothers day, it grows quite happy where it is but i have never cut it back and it is kinda all over right now and not blooming so much. i know nothing about roses, lots of other plants yes but roses no. what should i do, it hasint come out of hybernation yet.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: out of control

What is it growing on? A tree, a fence, a house, a climbing structure of some sort? You will get better advice from someone in your same climate zone, but I can tell you one basic. If you tie the long canes as horizontally as you can onto whatever the structure is, it will bloom more.


RE: out of control

It depends what the climber is but in Z4 it could be a weather issue. Back in CT a bad winter could do a lot of damage or even kill some climbers that were well established.

RE: out of control

In zone 4, there's a good possibility that the original climbing rose has died and what is left is the rootstock "Dr. Huey" that is also a climber. Dr. Huey has dark red flowers only in the spring, which would explain why it doesn't bloom much for the rest of the year. It's also pretty gangly, floppy, and difficult to control even with regular pruning and tying up to a support, so that would explain what you describe.

If that's the case, you will want to decide what to do about the Dr. Huey you have left. Some folks leave them because the flowers are still nice for a few weeks in the year, particularly if there is sentimental value to the plant (although in this case, the original rose your kids gave you has passed on). Some folks would rather dig them up and plant something else that will bloom more often and stay tidier, and be more hardy in your zone. If you want to go this route, we can give you some suggestions of alternative roses that will do more of what you're looking for. Dr. Huey is very hardy, so there's pretty good chance it'll survive in your zone, but it'll never be a very tidy climbing rose or frequently blooming.

If it doesn't have those dark red flowers, and the original climber is still there, it would help to see a picture of the blooms you do get and the bush, to see if we can help you get it a little more under control.


RE: out of control

I think Dr. Huey is the answer. If so, there is another alternative. You can leave it where it is but cut the canes back and then graft a new rose (or even more than one) on to the cane. You'll get a new rose on an established powerful root system. If you want to try it I'm sure some of the people here will tell you how.

RE: out of control

Look up Paul Zimmerman on you tube. He has a great video on trimming back climbing roses. If it is doctor Huey like some suspect either choose the enjoy the once bloomer or rip it out and start over IMO .

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