Easy Pruning Tips for Flower Carpet roses

One of the beauties of  Flower Carpet roses (also often referred to as Carpet roses), is that they don’t require any fancy pruning.   Unlike most roses, you don’t have to worry about where you’re cutting along the stem or about pruning them any particular way.  You can simply use pruners or even hedge clippers  – which ever is easier for you.   Just cut them back to about 1/3 of their size or more.   Cutting them back will ensure a fuller and denser growth for the upcoming season, as well as loads of blooms.

Flower Carpet cut back

Here are the Flower Carpets in our Silvan, Australia Trial Gardens after their annual spring cut-back. Because of the large number of plants we have to deal with, we often use electric hedge shears to cut ours back and you can do the same thing.

Flower Carpet Cut Back 2

Here are our Flower Carpet roses about 4 weeks after their annual spring cut-back. As you can see, they’re putting out loads of new growth.

Flower Carpet full bloom

Here are the same Flower Carpets in late summer and full bloom.

When to cut them back . . .

The best time to cut back your Flower Carpet roses is in the early spring, which  depending upon your location, can be anytime between now and mid-April.

If you live in a warmer climate you’ll probably be dealing with plants that are still green and possibly even still in bloom.  Don’t worry though . . . pruning them will stimulate growth and  generate more blooms.  If you can easily identify any dead stems, cut those right back to the ground.

In colder climates,  if it’s been a really harsh winter and depending on how much snow cover you’ve had, you may find that most branches have died back to about 3-4  inches from the ground.  This  is normal for Zones 5 and colder.   If that’s the case, you can cut them back to a few inches and they’ll still reward you with loads of blooms, starting around late June and lasting through the first few frosts.  Once they start to green up, you’ll be to identify any totally dead branches.  Those can be cut back to ground level.

After pruning your Flower Carpets, pull away any old dead leaves and mulch to get rid of any soil fungal infestations.  Give them a good feeding of controlled-release fertilizer or something like Espoma’s Rose Food and that’s all you’ll need to do to get them started for another season of blooms!

Flower Carpet Scarlet

This Flower Carpet Scarlet was cut back to about 3 inches in early spring!


Don’t forget to check out our Caring for Flower Carpet in the Spring video for complete step-by-step instructions on spring care and pruning for your Flower Carpet roses and also a newer Flower Carpet Spring Care post with even more pruning details!


, , , , ,

5 Responses to Easy Pruning Tips for Flower Carpet roses

  1. Graciebelle February 7, 2013 at 9:38 pm #

    Thanks for these pruning tips – can’t wait ’til it’s warm enough to get out there and start to prune my Flower carpet roses.

  2. Bob Grochmal November 18, 2013 at 8:12 pm #

    thanks for the info I trim mine back a little bit already before the winter frost I hope that won’t hurt them.

    • Your Easy Garden Team November 19, 2013 at 3:46 pm #

      No it shouldn’t and they’ll be fine.

  3. Robyn Archer July 23, 2015 at 11:22 pm #

    I have a carpet rose in a large pot.It has been there for several years now.have cut it back plenty of times.but when will i know when it is to small for the pot.please
    also leaves stay around the inside of the pot shell i remove them when i see them sitting there.

    regards Robyn

    • Your Easy Garden Team July 24, 2015 at 3:04 pm #

      Hi Robyn,
      It really depends on how large the pot is. If you see roots coming out of the bottom holes of the pot, the plant’s probably root bound and needs to go into a larger plant. If it’s thriving and seems happy, it’s probably OK to leave it as is. Any dead leaves should always be removed to eliminate the risk of fungus that can gather on any dead leaves. Hope this helps!

Leave a Reply

Designed & Developed by Frey Brothers Media