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Roses: Types, Pruning and Transplanting

Published on September 11th 2018

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Roses are one of the nations favourite plants and flowers to have both in the garden and as a beautiful bouquet. They come in an extensive range of colour, smells, sizes and types. You can use them in borders, containers, on arches or pergolas and even as a groundcover. They're easy to grow and look after, as well as being hardy and lasting a very long time, it is easy to see why they are so loved!

Types of Roses

Hybrid Tea
These usually produce only one bloom at the end of each stem rather than producing clusters of flowers. They have a more open habit and typically repeat bloom throughout the growing season. You can often identify a hybrid tea by the long, pointed buds that slowly uncurl.
Hybrid Tea
The polyantha rose varieties are small and bushy with sturdy foliage. They produce large clusters of blooms with each flower measuring around 3cm.
Initially, these were produced by crossbreeding hybrid teas with polyantha roses, meaning they provide masses of flowers in large clusters as the name suggests.
They are similar to hybrid teas however instead of producing one flower they produce clusters of blooms on each stem.
The name is a giveaway; miniature roses are bred to stay small in size. The bushes usually grow to around 40cm in height, with some occasionally growing larger. They are great for compact colour.
These are larger, thornier and often have scented flowers. Some have repeat flowers while others only flower once a year. This variety is not suitable for hedging.
Again as the name suggests climbing roses are great for growing on pergolas and arches with rambling stems. They produce repeat flowers that bloom throughout the summer and into the autumn.
Tree Rose
Also known as standard roses, these are a creation made by grafting a long stem onto a hardy rootstock and then grafting a rose bush on top of the stem. The rose grows happily, forming a lollipop shape.
Tree Rose or Standard Rose

General Tips for Pruning Roses

  • The best time to prune is between February and March.
  • Cut away any dead, diseased or damaged stems.
  • Make sure all cuts are done above a bud, slanting at 45° to prevent water getting into the wounds and causing rot or disease.
  • Try to encourage branches to grow outwards and upwards by leaving stems pointing away from the centre and cutting branches converging to the centre out.
  • If branches are crossing over each other, cut them out.
  • Cut out any old wood that produced poor flowering or poor new growth.
  • Roses should be cut back hard to encourage new, strong growth in the next flowering season (this does not apply to climbing or shrub roses).
  • Remove any suckers (these are fresh growth which typically look unlike the rest of the plant, usually protruding from the rootball and not from the central plant).


If you need to transplant a rose, it's recommended to do this when dormant after the growing season as roses are sensitive to shock. Ideally, this will be around the end of autumn before the first frosts and cold temperatures.
Re-Planting Preparation
When digging out your plant make sure not to damage any of the large roots and pull as much soil up with them as you can. You will need to dig a hole 30 cm bigger (in all directions) than the existing rootball or pot. This additional space allows the roots to establish at a faster rate meaning it will be much healthier and resilient.
Place your rose into the new hole and spread the roots carefully. Fill in halfway with the excavated soil and give it a good soaking with water. Fill the rest of the hole with any remaining earth. Firmly press down to get rid of any air pockets.
Now is also a good time to do any pruning.
You will need to keep an eye on the rose for a couple of weeks and make sure that it has plenty of water to help it settle into its new home, but always be sure not to waterlog and cause any root rot!

Recommended Roses

  • 'Blush Noisette' is a climber that can also be grown as a bush rose but looks stunning when trained to climb over an arch. The flowers are pale pink with a slight scent and have excellent disease resistance.
  • 'Comte de Chambord' is a great rose for cut flowers as surprisingly they last longer when placed in water than left on the plant. They fill the room with a beautiful rosy scent. They're a lilac shade with beautiful rosettes of petals.
  • 'Jacques Cartier' is a stunning rose. It is a soft pink shade with lots of petals that give off a sweet scent. It's an ideal bush rose and will also happily grow in shaded areas.
  • 'Adélaïde d'Orléans' is a stunning, climbing rose that gives a tremendous impact when grown over arches. The flowers are pure white with golden yellow centres, growing in clusters on foliage that is a beautiful dark green.
Show off your roses and tell us your favourites!

Remember if you get any hips they can be boiled up to create a delicious rosehip syrup.

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