Many people think that you have to treat shrub roses like you would hybrid tea roses by mulching their crown for winter and pruning them at a certain place. Not so with shrub roses. They are very low maintenance plants. Don’t be afraid to cut them back considerably in the spring so that they are reshaped to grow into the space provided later in the season. They can take major pruning. I would suggest that you wait to cut them back until they are about to push new growth for the season in case we have late frosts that might cause them to die back an inch or two.
It’s always nijce to get outside on a lovely spring day. First thing to do is to cut back all the perennials and ornamental grass that needs to be cut so everything is neat and tidy. Of course the dead leaves need to be picked up unless you are in the middle of the woods. Fertilizing your plants, especially if they are only a couple of years old is important. Use fertilizer with an acidifier or buy an acidifier to be added to the acid loving plants like the azaleas, rhododendrons, and hollies. Check out our website to see what things should be done when during the year. If you haven’t mulched in two years and your mulch has broken down, it is time to remulch with a 100% hardwood bark mulch that is naturally aged. Colored mulches are adding dyes to our water table we all drink. The wood used is from pallets of spilled chemicals, tree roots and stumps, throw away wood that has not been decomposed to kill all diseases in the wood. Edging can be done by hand or with a machine for deeper cuts to the edge. Hand pruning should be done before the new growth grows if you are doing any rejuvinating of older shrubs so they will look better after hard pruning. Some people use pre-emergent herbicide that is spread on top of the ground to keep weed seeds from germinating. This is a personal preference. All landscapes will have some weeds but mulching will help a lot in keeping the moisture in the soil and the weeds from taking over your landscape.