QUESTION:I live in southwest Ohio. I planted a knockout rose last summer or late spring. I failed to trim or prune it back before winter. It is now December and is very cold. Do you think it will survive the cold winter since it wasn't pruned?
ANSWER: Hello! It was a good thing that you didn't prune your Knockout rose before winter.
Roses should never be pruned before cold weather arrives, because pruning will result in fresh new tender growth that will suffer from winter kill and could kill your whole plant.
You can do things to have it survive the Ohio winters though.
Add a foot of mulch around the rose plant and wrap it in burlap or fleece material.
Wait to prune after all danger of frost is gone in spring. Cut off about 1/3rd of it's height.
Here is my page about pruning knockout roses
Knockout roses are shrub roses and are hardier than most rose bushes.
However, very severe winters can kill any rose if they start heaving out of the ground.
Give it a good soak so it will enter winter well hydrated.
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