To turn a strong-growing rose into a weeper of the type which naturally produces long pendent shoots requires that the leading growth be shortened in order to encourage the production of a few vigorous shoots, which will bloom the following summer. This will take place without further pruning, beyond the removal of sappy tips. If subsequently cut back to basal buds, good strong growths will result, which may be tied in as necessary until the right form has been attained.
The crimson rambler must not be regarded as a fit subject for looking after itself. A young tree should be cut down to the ground, and the resultant shoot shortened slightly the following spring. After this, the tree will probably grow with great freedom, and the danger then lies in not removing sufficient wood which has already flowered for a season or two. The side shoots may be cut clean out if there is an abundance, otherwise they can be shortened on the spur system to two or three buds, and fresh flowering shoots will be still obtainable from them. Banksian roses should, as a rule, not be pruned except for the removal of old or weakly wood.
The enemies of the rose are, unfortunately, many, and we can never hope to be without attacks of the various pests, both in insect and fungus forms. For thrip, or red spider, spraying or syringing with clean water has the best effect. The boring grub, which makes holes in the pith at the top of standard roses, can be best prevented by painting the ends with "knotting" at planting time. If the pest has found entry, however, a piece of wire should be pushed through the holes to destroy the grubs, the holes being closed with putty afterwards. Any hollow ends of shoots which have been attacked should be squeezed until firm wood is arrived at, and the shoots then be cut off. This cutting must be made sufficiently low down to make certain of having again reached a sound pith.
The pest pre-eminent of roses - aphides, or green fly - should be destroyed by finger and thumb method in the first instance, and may be kept in check if this is systematically done. The usual emulsions of soft soap and water and quassia chips will be applied with vigour and frequency if the pest has passed this initial stage.
Leaf-eating and leaf-binding caterpillars, and also the larvae of the rose caddice fly, are best destroyed by hand picking. Or the remedy known as Paris green may be applied in the former cases. The caterpillar of the rose sawfly should be treated in the same way, its presence being detected through the curling of leaves caused.
Rose slugs (the small caterpillars of Eriocampa rosae which attack the upper skin of leaves, may be checked by hand picking, or dusting with Hellebore powder or spraying with soaparite. The rose grub (Tortrix bergmanniana) is a common pest in spring, and must be also checked by hand picking.
Roses attacked by mildew must be dusted with flowers of sulphur, or sprayed with liver of sulphur, if preferred, half an ounce of the latter being dissolved in one and a half gallons of hot water for the purpose.
The orange fungus (otherwise known as red rust) is hard to get rid of, as its ravages are within, not merely without. Its attacks are often made in autumn, and are frequent in hot, dry soils. A start in spring may be made by spraying with Bordeaux mixture, and at the first sign of the disease in summer the trees should be syringed with Carbam, making sure that it reaches the under side of the leaves.
It cannot be too strongly emphasised, indeed, that the greatest safeguard which can be used against all forms of rose diseases, like those of human beings, lies in securing the most open and wholesome conditions possible, under which vigour of constitution and the consequent power of resisting disease will be found to be perpetually on the increase.