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If you want to learn how to de-thorn a rose, you found the right blog. Removing thorns from the rose with the right remover tools can make the job easier, with the roses being more comfortable to handle overall. We’ll also talk about should you remove rose thorns and do rose thorns grow back after removal?

Why does Rose Have Thorns?

Rose thorns are prickles or part of the rose epidermis. These prickles or thorns exist because they serve to protect the flowers by warding off pests like caterpillars and other leaf-munching creatures. Roses need natural pest control and protection. The thorns help keep bugs and grubs away easily.

Should I Remove Thorns from Roses?

Should I Remove Thorns from Rose?

When roses are harvested for ornamental display, thorns are removed to make the rose handling easier. This can be done in several ways, it will be covered in a later paragraph.

However, if you are planning to de-thorn live roses, you have to be careful in de-thorning living roses for several good reasons.

First, roses need natural pest control and protection. The thorns help keep bugs and grubs away easily.

Second, removing the thorns entirely from the stem can cause wounds on the epidermis. Wounds can attract bacteria and other plant pathogens that can cause a rose plant to become ill and eventually die. This applies most especially to rose bushes that tend to crawl and creep across wooden structures. If this is the case, we do not recommend using strippers or even paring knives. Instead, use a small nail clipper to remove the thorns individually.

However, keep in mind that mature rose bushes can have hundreds of thorns on each vine or stem, and this can mean you will need a lot of time to remove all of them because of how they’re structured.

Do Rose Thorns Grow Back After Removal?

Rose thorns are a part of the stem’s skin, and removing the prickles or thorns means they’re gone forever. Roses that have already been cut for whatever purpose can be de-thorned since they won’t be surviving for weeks or months as before.

How to Dethorn Roses?

Use Tools You May Have at Home (Thick Gloves, Paring Knife, Nail Clippers..)

When people don’t have the right tools for removing the thorns, they resort to the manual method. The manual method involves laying the roses down on a table to be de-thorned one by one.

To keep your hands safe, we recommend wearing a pair of thick gloves since rose thorns are sharp and can easily puncture the skin.

Lay down the rose and pick them one by one, so you can remove the thorns individually using a paring knife, or if you have a pair of nail clippers, those work fine as well. You can either remove the thorns entirely from the stem area or remove the sharp points, so they’re easier to handle.

Some people remove just the sharp points to reduce the pointiness that can puncture the skin. Cutting at the stem level can be problematic to some as it can inadvertently damage the stem’s epidermis. Too many stem wounds can be problematic as well, so be sure to select the right type of method of removing the thorns.

Also, if you are removing thorns from roses that are already in a vase, it won’t hurt to do a bit more rose grooming by removing any leaves that fall below the waterline to increase your life roses.

Additional tips for manual dethorning a rose

– Use only the sharpest knife that you can find or use. A sharp knife ensures that there will be minimal wound on the stem. Wounds can make the stem look shabbier than you’d like, and you probably don’t want your stem to look like it’s been beaten up somewhat after de-thorning.

– Gently run the knife along the stem to remove the thorns. Avoid digging into the stem, for apparent reasons.

– The direction of the sharp knife should always be away from you. Grip the stem properly, so it doesn’t fly away. A firm grip will also ensure that the blade’s level will remain stable while you’re working on the thorns.

– Work around the stem. Strip one side at a time and don’t rush the work. This will ensure that only the thorns are correctly removed from the stem.

– Scissors might work, but these are harder to control, so you can end up pinching the stem instead of just the thorns.

Keep Roses longer

Using Special Tool: Rose Thorn Remover

Using a rose thorn stripper is a faster method of removing thorns from roses. This is ideal for inspired home gardeners and people who are venturing out to sell bouquets of roses or flower arrangements in general. There are two common rose thorn strippers in the market, one is made of plastic with a flower shape, another is made of metal. The latter one is quicker and more painless for de-thorning because of the design of the clamps. You have to use much force and back and forth several times if you use a plastic rose thorn stripper.

Check out the following video to see a demonstration of two mentioned rose thorn strippers to the de-thorn rose:

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For metal-typed rose thorn stripper should take at least two roses at once for faster stripping of bouquets. These devices are also equipped with pressure-sensitive spring mechanisms that can adjust to the movement along the stem of the rose.

Metal-typed designs emphasize virtually no damage to the stem of the roses. This is a light-duty tool that is perfect for both beginners and advanced users since plastic-typed can damage the rose stems’ epidermis and cause unsightly issues.

Using this device is easy: clamp the device and run it across the rose stem with minimal effort. Unlike a paring knife or blade, it will not accidentally cut through the stem, which is a big problem with some folks who aren’t used to de-thorning roses.

de-thorning rose


After speed, convenience, and safety while removing roses’ thorns, we recommend that you use a thorn and leaf remover or a rose thorn stripper to make your job that much easier. A rose thorn stripper also increases de-thorning speed, so it is an excellent tool for people who prepare rose bouquets and similar flower arrangements.


More articles about gardening you may interest:

How to keep your roses fresh longer?

How to Make a Bridal Bouquet with Silk Flowers?

How to Preserve Your Wedding Bouquet?

4 Ways to Water Your Plants While You’re Away on Vacation