|Pruning in Oklahoma has a two-step process since they need to be winterized. Starting generally around October or
November when the plants have had hard frosts and are becoming dormant, winterizing can begin. Many hardy varieties
may have their canes tied to prevent whipping, and dirt may be placed around the bud union. Do not use dirt from the area
around the rose, but bring in dirt from an outside source. If you use cones or other protectors for tender varieties, prune
the tops so the bush will fit under the cone.
Generally, roses are pruned down to a few feet tall to allow rose cones or other winterizing techniques to be used to
protect the rose crown. During the cold, wind, thaws and freezes, mot of the uncovered rose canes will die back. "when
the forsythia blooms" in your area is considered to be the right time to prune, usually from March to June. Roses are
uncovered and the pruning of dead wood begins so the roses can start with all new growth of the spring.
Cut waist to knee high for most modern roses, and cut back repeat blooming old garden roses and shrubs one-third. All
once- bloomers should be pruned right after blooming. Many of the once blooming ramblers require one-year old wood in
order to bloom the next spring or summer. If you prune these roses late in the year, they may not bloom the next year.
Keep four to seven good canes (less if you want to exhibit), and prune with the plant's growth habit in mind. If the plant
grows upright, prune to an outward facing budeye.
If the plant is low growing or spreading, then prune to an inside facing budeye. This is also the rule of thumb for dead
heading during the growing season. New growth will generate from the budeye in the direction that it is pointing. When
you remove a cane, make sure you take it off completely at the crown. Use a small saw if necessary. Cleaning the bark
off the crown will help generate new basal (can) growth. This can be accomplished by using a wire brush.
Remember there is little you can do wrong when pruning a rose with the exception of removing the crown or improper
winterizing. If you live in an area with cane borers, seal the cane ends with white glue or orange shellac. Avoid using
black sealing compound as it is not attractive and stains badly.