I spent last Saturday down at Brookgreen Gardens on Pawleys Island. This was part of their ‘Diggn It’ festival. I did a talk in the morning, a book signing and right after lunch a pruning demonstration in their new rose garden. Well, it wasn’t really a demonstration because the roses are quite new but we were able to talk through the principles of pruning.
I’m always struck that even though there is so much information out there on rose pruning, how many gardeners still don’t know some of the simple, basic things that make it so much easier.
I spent some time explaining what bud eyes were and how once pruned above it, new growth would go in the direction the eye was pointing. This was ‘light bulb’ moment for so many. They had heard of pruning to an outward facing bud eye but not why. Now they have a tool to control the shape of the rose bush as they prune.
I also spent some time on climbers. I particularly carefully explained the difference between main canes and laterals and what their different jobs where. Another light bulb moment! There is more information on dealing with climbing roses on this website and you can get there by clicking here.
Most of all I simply had a great time meeting new friends and talking to gardeners. I love talking to gardeners about roses and making them less scary and more approachable. Judging by their enthusiastic reaction we might have a whole bunch of new rose gardeners!