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How To Easily Remove Excessive Thorns From Your Roses

Aug 17, 2007
Though beautiful, a rose can hurt. After all, every rose has its thorns. All sorts of myths symbolize the danger of these little daggers. According to Greek Mythology, Cupid shot arrows into a rose bush after he was stung by a bee, and the pain from his arrow thus caused the thorns to sprout.

Don't cry though if these sharp points have poked you more than once. You took can remove these little darts and create a smooth stemmed rose with just a little care and patience.

Note this: thorns have a purpose. They help the plant drink water, and thus when you remove the thorn, you should be careful to not inflict any excessive damage to the stem. Utilize a proper dethorning technique to avoid injuring the rose. Carelessly dethorning a rose will shorten the life of the flower as the peeled or torn skin will hinder the amount of water the stem can take.

When removing the thorns, you have two choices: wait until the stem is cut or do it while the stem is still attached to the plant. Remove the thorns while the plant is still young and before the rose blooms if you know that a gardener will be cutting the stem in the future for display or for a bouquet. To remove the thorns, apply slight pressure to the sides and then push them off the stem. Do the same with cut stems.

A thorn stripper will help you dethrone roses as well. This strips the stem of leaves and thorns. You can make your own with metal strapping from a hardware store, but if you do, file the edges that touch the flower so you do not tear the stem excessively.

To dethrone the stem with this homemade tool, hold it below the flower and then close the jaws around the stem. Don't use too much pressure because you could damage or even sever the stem. Drag the dethorner down the stem and watch the thorns pop off. Getting the hang of using this tool will take time, but practice makes perfect, and soon you'll know exactly how much pressure to use.

A knife works well to remove thorns as well. Just scrape the stem of the rose with a sharp floral or pairing knife. When removing the thorns from a cut stem, consider removing just the thorns and leaves below the water level.

Think carefully about the look of the rose before trying to remove every thorn and leaf. Consider the flower's use, and then remove thorns as necessary. Again, dethorning the flower can shorten its life, so don't overdo it.

Consider dethorning especially when you need more plant litter for your compost pile. The extra thorns and stems will help build up your lacking pile, and in the end, make handling flowers safer to for you to work with.
About the Author
Gregg Hall is an author living in Navarre Florida. Find more about this as well as flowers online at http://www.sendflowersorgifts.com
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