If you look after your roses in autumn, they will get safely through the winter, coming back healthy, vigorous and full of flowers the following year.
The key autumn rose care jobs are tidying up, removing spent blooms or diseased foliage, and pruning. Autumn is also a good time to plant a rose.
More on growing roses:
- How to take rose cuttings
- How to deadhead roses
- What to grow with roses
- How to grow climbing roses
- How to grow rambling roses
- Top roses for scent
Where to buy roses
Find out more about autumn rose care, below.
You Will Need
Snip off any soggy, shrivelled rose flowers to prevent rot setting in. If your rose produces good hips, remove only the petals, so the hips can continue developing. Discover the best roses for hips.
Pick off and bin any remaining foliage that shows signs of disease, such as black spot, mildew or rust. Also collect any infected leaves that have fallen on to the ground, as these can carry over diseases from one year to the next.
Autumn is a good time to transplant any roses that are in the wrong position. You can also plant new ones, as they’ll have time to establish before winter. These are available as container-grown plants, or as bare-root plants from November through to March. Find out how to plant a bare-root rose.
Prune out dead, damaged or crossing stems from shrub roses. Aim to create an open-centred framework to encourage good air-flow through the plant.
Shorten the stems of tall bush roses to reduce wind-rock during winter gales, as this can loosen and damage the roots. Cut stems just above an outward-facing bud wherever possible.
Thin out the heads of standard roses (shaped like lollipops on a single tall stem). Their rounded heads can catch the wind and even snap off completely in a severe storm.