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Roses grow in a variety of flower colors in many gardens. In white, red, pink, orange or apricot, they are eye-catchers in any garden. The more than 200 types of roses of the rose family (lat. "Rosaceae") cannot be surpassed in their bloom. However, in order for your roses to remain beautiful for a long time, wild shoots must be removed regularly. Here you will find instructions on how to identify and remove the wild shoots on your roses.

Wild shoots on roses

What are wild shoots?

Most roses found in our gardens are grafted roses. The grafted roses are composed of two different plants: the tea rose and the wild rose. The wild part serves as a root for the plant and forms a robust base for the beautiful flowers of the noble variety. The graft combines the beautiful flowers of the tea rose with the very strong roots of the robust but few beautiful wild roses in one plant.

After some time - this can take up to several years - it can happen that the wild underlay suddenly starts sprouting. These shoots are not noticeable at first, or you will be delighted with the two-tone flowering rose plant. However, these so-called wild shoots have a negative effect on the growth of the tea rose.

  • Wild shoots rob the hybrid tea of nutrients, light and water
  • Shoots of the wild variety overgrow the hybrid tea

The stronger the wild shoots become, the more the tea rose is crowded out. The beautiful flowers of the tea rose are becoming fewer and the simple flowers of the wild rose are multiplying. If you do not remove the shoots, the colorful blossoms of the noble variety can die out. If your rose plant is to remain an eye-catcher in your garden for a long time, it is important to regularly check for wild shoots and then remove them.

recognize wild shoots

The widespread statement that wild shoots can be identified simply by the number of leaves is outdated. According to this statement, wild shoots have seven leaves. The shoots of the noble variety, on the other hand, only have five leaves. With the many varieties of roses, there are also varieties with more than five leaves on the shoots of the noble variety.

The shoots of the wild rootstock are easily recognizable by their different appearance and different shoot character. If you can see shoots without flowers on your rose plant, these may be shoots from the wild rootstock. In the first year, the wild shoots usually do not produce any flowers. These only sprout in the second year or later. The following features help you to distinguish the appearance of the shoots of the wild variety from the noble variety:

  • thinner shoots
  • lighter leaves
  • grow faster and stronger
  • different growth direction of the shoots, leaves & spines
  • simple and plain flowers of white-pink or pink

tip: If you are not sure whether it is a wild shoot, you can see whether the shoot originated above or below the grafting point. The grafting point is a more or less pronounced thickening on the root neck. To do this, you must first clear the soil around the root area of the rose plant. If the origin is below the grafting point, it is a wild instinct. The shoot of the noble variety, on the other hand, always emerges above this thickening.

Properly remove wild shoots

There are optimal times for most plant pruning. When is the best time to remove wild shoots? Is spring more suitable or is it autumn?

There is no best time of year to remove the wild shoots on your rose plant. The shoots should be removed whenever they are discovered on the plant. If it is a wild instinct, the removal procedure is as follows:

  • Dig off the top layer of soil around the rootstock
  • Reveal grafting point and origin
  • push down with thumbs
  • Cut wild shoots horizontally
  • pull down with a strong jerk
  • Also remove the astring (ring-shaped bulge at the base of the shoot).
  • Cover the root and grafting area with at least 5 cm of soil

tip: Use leather gloves. So you are protected from the sharp rose thorns.

Before you tear off the wild shoot from the root neck, it is particularly important that it is cut. If this is not done, it can happen that the bark of the rose is damaged more severely. To prevent this, the incision must be made. This means that the bark can only tear up to this point and you can enjoy your rose plant for a long time.

Avoid renewed sprouting

The budding of wild shoots is a completely natural behavior of the wild plant. You cannot avoid these shoots, but their budding can be curbed. With the following tips you can avoid renewed sprouting of the removed shoot:

1) Wild shoots should never be cut just above the ground. Because this causes exactly the opposite of what you want to achieve. The cut stimulates the growth of the shoot and it grows even faster.

2) The shoot should not be removed with secateurs or a knife. As a result, the entire tissue of the shoot is not removed and a new shoot occurs after a short time.

3) If the shoot is removed with a tug, you can be sure that the branch will also be removed. This dividing tissue is located directly on the root neck. If this is not removed, the shoot can sprout again after a while.

4) It is important that the root of the rose plant is covered with soil. The finishing point should be at least 5 cm below the ground.

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