Should David Austin Roses Be Covered In Winter And When Should They Be Pruned

Question From: J. Walter - Royal Oak, Michigan, United States
Q: I'm growing some David Austin roses in my Royal Oak yard. Do I need to give them some kind of cover in winter? And when should I prune them? I enjoy your column in Homestyle, and I was pleased when you recently mentioned Pine Tree Seeds -- I have been sowing them for years.

A: It's a bit late to cover them. I heap compost and leaves on the bushes to protect them. You can still do that. In spring I wash it off with a stiff stream of water when I see buds emerging. I prune them when the forsythia bloom in my neighborhood or you begin to see the buds emerge on the stems. Best, Nancy