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Rosa 'Margaret Merrill'

I HAVE a lovely bush of Rosa 'Margaret Merrill'. I pruned it in July and instead of new shoots, it has sprouted bunches of rosettes at the end of the cut off stems. What can I do? Do I recut it further down the stems? Please help, as it gave me a great deal of pleasure throughout the summer.


'Margaret Merrill' is a lovely rose, but the growths on your plants sound very weird - a photo would have helped. The problem may be a growth of basal or water shoots from the bud union on the branch. In some areas where it is very cold, they may get killed off from frost. In warmer areas they can be left as they have the potential for becoming great flowering canes later on. The shoots usually have lots of little buds on the ends of short stems. These can be removed in the winter pruning, but next winter they will have matured and can be pruned like the rest of the rose bush. If more grow by the late summer, these can either be left for winter pruning, or just have the tips trimmed to become more mature basal shoots for later.

Weekend Gardener, Issue 108, 2002, Page 22

Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH.

Andrew Maloy Weekend Gardener

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