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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Monday - April 26, 2010

From: Canton, MI
Region: Midwest
Topic: Non-Natives
Title: Pruning non-native razzmatazz rose from Canton MI
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have 5 "hardy" rosebushes called "Razzamatazz" which are about 3 years old. I don't know how to prune them properly. I do cut the dead bloom back just before the "leaf of 5", which seems to work well. Overall though, I don't know how to prune them throughout the blooming season & into the fall. Some of the main shoots seem to get very leggy. How do I prepare my rosebushes for the spring and the fall/winter season?

ANSWER:

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is dedicated to the use, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which the plants are being grown. There are very few roses native to North America, and they are all considered "wild" roses. The overwhelming majority of roses in the commercial trade are roses which have been hybridized many times over and all of which have their ancient origins in China. We have gardened with roses in Texas, and about our only rule was to prune them on Valentine's Day. But, by then, they were already threatening to bloom, and some had stayed green virtually all winter. Since you probably have a whole different kind of climate in Michigan, we found some websites that will help you more than we can:

HelpMeFind.com Razzmatazz rose

Suite 101.com How to Care for Rose Bushes in Cold Climates

About.com: Gardening How and When to Prune Roses

 

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