Pruning & Winterizing
Knock Out Roses
Jump to Winterizing Knock Out Roses Below
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Control on Knock Out Roses
Well I understand that you chose to
grow Knock Out Roses due to their low maintenance
attributes, but pruning is still a necessity if you want to
maximize the full potential of the Knock Out Rose family of
Starting each spring with a well
pruned Knock Out roses is important due to the aggressive
growth that you'll receive throughout the growing season.
This allows you to begin the year with roses of balanced
sizes when planted in groups and also allow you to shape and
provide uniformity within each of the roses. Remember to
always prune out any damaged branches and look for any
branch congestion in areas that may require thinning. You'll
see more on this topic in the below pruning tips on
Winterizing your Knock Out Roses.
Once the roses have been prepared
to go into the spring growing season, then all you'll need
to do is fertilize and enjoy the results throughout the
entire growing season from spring thru the fall season.
There are three primary reasons that you'd consider pruning
Knock Out roses throughout the growing season. They are as
allowable size in area planted.
general cleaner and more managed appearance.
thicker growth habit leading to more bloom volume.
on the variety of Knock Out Rose that you have acquired,
some are a little more aggressive than others, such as the
first release, the standard red "Knock Out" variety. This is
one of the most aggressive, along with the "Pink Knock Out"
that can grow to heights of 6-8' if not pruned and
maintained. It's common for most gardeners to want Knock Out
Roses to be maintained in the 4-5' height range, and even
small in cases, so pruning to manage these intended sizes is
critical. Remember pruning is not a must and your roses will
bloom and perform regardless, but placing a little attention
in your Knock Out Roses will create very noticeable results.
The degree of attention that you place on pruning can
certainly vary. For those gardeners who wish to maybe only
prune their Knock Outs 2-3 times throughout the year, I
suggest that you utilize the slow down periods following
heavy blooming cycles to prune the Knock Outs and remember
to apply Fertilome Rose Food
or Mills Magic Rose
Food following each pruning. The amount of pruning can vary again
depending on the volume of size control that you are needing
to apply. On average, it's common to prune back Knock Outs
by 20-25% during each pruning visit especially when only
pruning 2-3 times throughout the year.
gardeners who like to provide a monthly clean up of your
Knock Outs, your volume of pruning will be less to maybe
only 10-20% and you'll focus on clean up of dead heading all
blooming out flowers and any remaining rose hips. Your
degree of fertilizing will depend on how aggressive you want
your roses to be, but I suggest fertilizing at least every
pretty much all there is too it! Remember that, during your
pruning visits, you can manage any needed pruning to keep
your roses balanced in size and shape and perform any
thinning possible where any heavily congested foliage or
branching is obvious. This type of pruning and fertilizing
to your Knock Out Roses will provide you one of the easiest
to grow and most colorful shrubs available today. You and
your Knock Outs will be the envy of the neighborhood.
Winterizing or Winter Prep of your Knock Out Roses
Roses will perform solid throughout the growing season and
amazing perform down to the beginning of winter frost and
freezes in late fall. They seem to not know that winter is
arriving and will often be fully loaded with blooms and buds
during the early winter season.
that you perform a fairly heavy pruning of your Knock Out
Roes in late fall to early winter to start your preparation
for next spring. The volume of pruning can depend on the
nature of their last pruning performed and how often the
pruning visits were performed throughout the year.
Before & After of
Winter Prep Pruning of
Knock Out Roses not pruned since Summer
Click Here to View Larger Picture of Before & After
some pictures of two groups of Double Knock Out Roses that
show ones that hadn't been pruned aggressively in the summer
and ones that had been pruned earlier in the fall season.
The less pruned Knock Outs were tall and more leggy and
required a heavier pruning to prepare for winter. The group
that had been pruned earlier in the fall season were more
compact and didn't need near as much pruning, but clean up,
dead heading, removal of buds and old flowers, etc. was
performed with a light volume of branches being also pruned
winter preparation pruning will be performed for two primary
reasons. First to minimize any chance of snow load breakage,
and second to provide a neat and cleaner appearance for the
winter season. Again, if you don't manage this winter
preparation pruning, it is likely that your Knock Out Roses
will be fine and will start up in the spring with their
normal zeal. Just remember to manage the needed pruning in
the spring to get them started off right.
Before of Knock Out Rose pruned
earlier in the Fall
Clean up of Knock Out Rose
pruned earlier in the Fall
Click Here to view larger picture of
before & after picture
common for Knock Outs to be possibly pruned again a little
heavier in the spring to prepare for the onset of heavy new
growth and blossoms. This again will vary on the size
intended for your Knock Outs to grow. For those Knock Out
owners who want large Knock Outs, you may not prune any
further following your winter preparation, but those who
intend to keep Knock Out roses in the 4' height range are
advised to prune heavily to start off each spring with a
Knock Out in the 2-2.5' height range or even smaller.
Remember, you can NOT prune a Knock Out Roses too much.
The general rule
of thumb that I will state is this:
The more you
prune .... the more they bloom!!
customers who have acquired Knock Out Roses from Evergreen
of JC over the last few years, we want to thank you for your
support. Evergreen has partnered up with Greenleaf Nursery
on producing a quality and affordable Knock Out Rose for us
to provide the most affordable Knock Outs in our area.
feeding your Knock Out Roses will only get you even more
blossoms than already produced. We suggest applying
Fertilome Rose Food or Mill Magic Rose Food every 1 to 2
months. These are granular applications that will break down
slowly with rainfall and/or irrigation and will provide
continual nutrients needed for heavy blooming and attractive
for Knock Out Roses
even Knock Outs are subject to the onset of Japanese Beetles
that plague our roses from June thru August. We have been
experimenting, with good results, the application of
Fertilome Systemic Soil Drench Insecticide containing Merit,
a quality insecticide that is taken up thru the root system
and one applications applied properly provides a full year
of insect control. Though this product hasn't proven to
eliminate Japanese Beetles totally, it has certainly
provided a dramatic cut back of their volume and damage
done. It's as easy as mixing and pouring onto the root
system with a watering can. No fancy sprayers or
applicators needed for a full year of insect control.
If you desire to apply a
insecticide on a regular basis for extra control of unwanted
insects, we suggest using Fertilome
Carbaryl or HiYield
All Purpose Insecticide, both being great all purpose
insecticides. These require to be applied with a compression
or hand held sprayer.