How Do I Prepare My Roses For Winter?

Winterizing Your Roses: 4 Steps to Prepare

Clean Up the Ground

The first step in winterizing your roses is to clean up the ground around them. Remove all fallen leaves and other debris that could be harboring pests or diseases. If there are any weeds, make sure to properly discard them as well, as they can also bring in pests and diseases that may harm your roses.

Deadhead Struggling Flowers

The second step is to deadhead any struggling flowers on your plants. Wilting or browning flowers should be detached from the plants before winter sets in and causes them to go dormant. This will help prevent diseases from taking hold of the plant and weakening it.

Prune the Plants Down

Pruning is an essential part of winterizing your roses. Pruning helps reduce disease pressure and encourages healthy growth for next season. Cut back any dead, diseased, or damaged canes and remove any crossing branches that could cause damage to the plant during storms or high winds.

Stop Fertilizing in Late Fall

In late fall, you should stop fertilizing your roses. This helps reduce stress on the plant during winter’s cold temperatures. It also ensures that your plants won’t be over-stimulated by nitrogen, which can cause excessive growth before winter sets in.

Additional Tips for Winterizing Your Roses

Now that you know the basics of winterizing your roses, here are a few additional tips to keep in mind:

  • Mulch: Adding mulch around the base of your rose bush can help insulate it from cold temperatures and help retain moisture during dry periods.
  • Watering: Keep an eye on soil moisture levels throughout the winter months. Deeply water plants every few weeks if there is no snow cover.
  • Protection from Wind: Wind can cause a lot of damage to tender rose branches so make sure you provide enough protection if you have windy winters.


Winterizing roses doesn’t have to be a daunting task if you take a few simple steps! With proper preparation and care, you can ensure that your roses will thrive through even the harshest winters.

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