Shade Tolerant Climbing Roses

Written by marie louise
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Shade Tolerant Climbing Roses
(Jupiterimages/ Images)

Climbing roses brighten shady spots in the garden, as well as decorate walls, fences or trellises. Growing light-coloured climbers in partial shade can keep the colour from fading and the full sun from withering the blooms. Picking a location with rich, well-drained soil and having a regular maintenance schedule will ensure that shade-tolerant climbing roses bloom for many seasons.

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Climbing Prairie Rose

The climbing prairie rose blooms in May with a profusion of five-petaled deep to light pink roses with heart-shaped petals. Each rose is two to three inches across and has bright, yellow-gold stamens. The clusters grow on the ends of the stems, opening one or two at a time and last for about a month. The roses are surrounded by foliage composed of three to five leaflets that are pointed at the tip, serrated along the edges and are about 13 inches in length. The stems of the prairie rose have small, straight thorns, called prickles, scattered along the length and grow six to 15 feet long. Bright red fruit, known as rose hips, appear in midsummer, which attracts a variety of mammals and birds.


What these flowers lack in fragrance, they make up for in looks. The Penelope climbing rose is a hybrid musk rose that blooms repeatedly during its growing season. It blooms with large clusters of up to 25 or more roses. The dark-green foliage highlights the frilly, open blooms, which are a soft peach colour when they begin to open and turn a peachy-white once they are in full bloom. At maturity, this climbing rose is five feet tall and wide with an above average resistance to disease. Penelope can be grown in hardiness zones seven to 10 and can be grown in zone six if planted in a location protected from harsh winds and cold air.


The strong "wild-rose" fragrance of these roses ushers in the beginning of summer. Complicata is a gallica rose that loves to climb and can reach heights of 10 to 15 feet. Distinctive greyish-green leaves frame the clusters of deep pink rose blooms that measure 5 1/2 inches across. The petals overlap with the tips curling inward slightly around a centre of numerous yellow stamens. Complicata bloom for four to six weeks in early summer. It thrives in partial shade in hardiness zones three to eight and may be grown in a protected location in zone four.

Buff Beauty

Anyone who likes a strong fruity, tea-scented flower will love this hybrid musk climbing rose, which blooms from June to October. Buff beauty grows five feet tall in hardiness zones seven to 10 and in zone six in protected locations in the landscape. The 2 1/2- to three-inch roses vary in colour from a peachy-yellow, deep apricot or deep honey colour depending on environmental factors such as the condition of the soil, weather and the time of year, according to Paul Barden of Old Garden Roses and Beyond. This climbing rose enjoys a dappled shade area and has a high resistance to diseases.

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