How to Take Cuttings of Roses


Taking cuttings of your own roses, or collecting cuttings from other rose gardeners, is becoming increasingly popular as rose growers look for ways to keep heirloom varieties growing, and others return to older methods of gardening out of environmental concerns. Taking rose cuttings is not difficult, and for some is a method of collecting wonderful rose varieties from other places or friends.

Taking Rose Cuttings

Step 1

Cut at the right time. Cut roses in the fall or winter, when the plants are becoming dormant. If you can, taking rose cuttings between November and February is best for the plant. They can be taken at other times, however, as long as the plant is mature.

Step 2

Take a cutting from a known blooming portion. The best part of the rose to grow new roots from is a stem that has recently bloomed. Choose tips of stems that have rose hips or withered flowers.

Step 3

Prepare the cutting. Remove any flower heads or hips from the stem you want to cut, down to the first set of healthy leaves.

Step 4

Cut the stem. Use sharp pruning shears or a sharp knife, and cut at a clean 45-degree angle away from the plant. The cutting should be from 6 to 8 inches long.

Step 5

Keep the cuttings moist. Spray them with some water and store them in plastic bags. They can be kept for several days this way, but the sooner you root them, the better rooting results you will get.

Step 6

Keep the cuttings cool, if needed. If you are taking rose cuttings on a hot day or in a hot climate, you may want to place them in a foam cooler with some ice on the bottom. They should still be put in plastic bags with a little water to keep moist, and shouldn't touch the ice directly.

Things You'll Need

  • Sharp knife or pruning shears
  • Plastic bag
  • Small spray bottle of water
  • Foam cooler, if needed
  • Ice, if needed


  • Texas A&M University Horticulture
  • Santa Clarita Valley Rose Society
Keywords: how to cut roses, taking rose cuttings, how to take cuttings

About this Author

Kim Hoyum is a Michigan-based freelance writer. She has been a proofreader, writer, reporter and editor at monthly, weekly and daily publications for five years. She has a Bachelor of Science in writing and minor in journalism from Northern Michigan University.