“A Year in the Garden — A Monthly Gardening Guide for the Gulf South” recommends pruning roses in mid-August to prepare them for fall bloom.
Prune stems with die-back. Remove crossing branches to expose the interior of the bush to more sunlight.
Prune to a height of three feet for hybrid teas and just lightly for grandifloras and floribundas. Shape miniatures lightly, according to the guide.
“I usually tell folks to reduce height of floribundas, grandifloras and shrubs like Knock Outs by one-third in the fall,” said LSU AgCenter horticulturist Allen Owings.
“Interior thinning to allow sunlight in and increase air circulation is important for all roses. Most folks neglect that part of pruning,” Owings said.
Make cuts three quarters of an inch above a bud, pruning so that the top faces outward from the plant. If canker die-back is suspected, dip your pruners in alcohol or a 10 percent Clorox solution.
Fertilize after pruning to encourage new growth.
DIVIDE DAYLILIES, LA. IRIS: Now’s the time to divide overcrowded daylilies and Louisiana iris.
Continue to mulch beds and remember to keep caladiums well-watered.
“A Year in the Garden” is on sale at Magnolia Mound, 2161 Nicholson Drive, for $14.95. Call (225) 343-4955 to order by mail. Mail orders are $15 plus $5 for shipping and handling.