Why doesn't my climbing rose bush bloom?


Quick Answer

Improper pruning is a common cause of a climbing rose bush's failure to bloom. Overpruning stifles the growth of buds, which is why there are no flowers.

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Full Answer

After climbing roses are planted, it's recommended that gardeners prune them lightly for the first two years. Minimal pruning allows the plant to adjust to its new surroundings. Allow the initial roses to bloom long and wild. It's acceptable to trim back the canes that become too unruly, but let most grow freely. Once the plant is flourishing, prize canes can be bent horizontally and tied. The excess length is then cut. The end result can produce canes that consistently bloom in a manner the gardener desires.

Another way to solve the blooming problem is to know the best time of year to trim the bush. Traditional climbing roses should be pruned right after they bloom in late spring or early summer. This method avoids accidentally chopping off any buds. Keeping a rose bush tidy involves cutting away main canes that are damaged or weakened. Shoots that flower can be cut back to the nodes, which encourages healthy growth. When in doubt about what to cut, err on the side of caution and leave it alone.

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