Why won't my roses bloom? Be sure your roses are getting at least 6 hours of sunlight each day. Fertilize your roses every 6 weeks through the growing season. Prune your roses back each year in mid April.
How should I prune my roses? Use sharp bypass pruning shears. Prune them in early May at the same time that it is safe to plant out new rose bushes. Prune out all damaged canes, thin and weak canes. With hybrid tea, grandiflora, and floribunda roses, prune the strong canes back to 1/3 or 1/2 of their original height. Encourage the rose bush to grow new branches away from the middle by pruning a quarter inch above a bud that is facing out. This gets more air into the center of the plant as well as giving it the classic urn shape. Cut through the stem at a 45º angle. Remove any suckers that are coming from the rootstock below the graft.
Prune your non-climbing roses in November back to 36" when you are putting your rose collars around your roses to keep them from breaking off at the base of the plant.
Throw away the clippings as these can hold rose pests and diseases.
What is an "own-root" rose? Most roses are grafted on to a hardy rootstock of another rose variety. This makes for a great performing rose in the summer. Unfortunately in our cold winters sometimes the grafted rose dies and all you have left is the rootstock which grows back as an unappealing rose. Own root roses are growing on their own roots so if they die back in the winter, they will grow back as the same variety. They are therefore more cold hardy than a grafted rose. Protect your grafted roses in the winter by using rose collars filled with bark mulch.