Do you snip first buds?

A thread on the Rosarian’s Corner got me to wondering what you serious hybridizers do: do you snip off first buds (allowing the plant to direct its energies toward growing) or do you let them bloom to see if you want to toss it right away? My guess is you let them bloom so you can discard. If you do allow first blooms, do you snip of subsequent blooms for a period of time?

I always let mine bloom and I haven’t felt that it slowed the growth of my plants. Honestly, I don’t know how anyone could resist the need to see the first bud. I know I sure can’t!


I can’t either. I let it open to see the color and shape and then snip.

Judith, I do the same as you - the location of the “snip” though depends on the bloom and plant qualities!

Jim Sproul

As my first goal is desease resistance I never select early.

Young seedlings first buds are snipped as early as possible in order to help the tiny plants to build up (and down!) and be able of facing open field hazards. Young seedling summer flowers are not typical here with too much heat.

I snip buds at least to the end of july.

It does help a lot. An estimation is that with early bud snipping you can have three growth cycles compared to two when flowers are left to open.

Usually “Polyantha” and other cluster small flowering plant buds are not snipped as this is too much work. Nor are species hybrids.

Pierre Rutten

No way. I let the first bloom open so that I can make that first culling ASAP. While many roses will improve in bloom size, petal count and flower shape, it is possible to cull for poor flower color (there are so many dirty pinks, pale yellows and whites to be weeded out) at a very early stage. I prefer to do this, since it is clear to me that even the smallest of plants are quite capable of supporting that first flower. I usually cut off the bloom of anything promising as soon as it is fully open, but thats as far as I go.


I wonder if the severity of the first winter should be considered when discussing this procedure for seedlings planted outside.

Good point, Henry. Or, in our case here in the SW or other hot climates, the severity of the 1st summer.

I keep the first week or two just to keep me going (hey! winters are long…) and the rest are disbudded asap.

We do, as most of you, want to see what color and flower shape the bloom is. After waiting so long, the suspense is just too great! Will snip it after that first peek.

I cant stand the thought of snipping. Winters are to long and boring. Need something to brighten up spring. I get my first blooms(not that I have had that many) pretty early. Even a ugly flesh colored 4 petal rose looks good when all things are dormant and bland.

I never snip.

Of course, I will never be in this for anything other than the joy of seeing that first bloom of a rose I hybridized.


Anything that blooms indoors before being planted outside in beds I leave. But on planting day, I snip all buds and flowers off.

While this rose will most likely change colors outside, it’s the best argument I can make for not snipping the buds early. Having seen this flower the plant was tagged and given a better location in the seedling bed to make future evaluation easier. Many of my seedlings will be White indoors before showing their phototropic characteristics outdoors.