Roses That Grow in the Shade

All roses require a certain amount of sunlight to thrive, but there are many shrubs, climbers and ramblers that will tolerate partial or dappled shade. If planting roses near trees, place them on the eastern sides to be certain they get the full effect of the lower morning sun. Choose roses with few petals on their blooms for semi-shady conditions.

Rambling Rector

Rambling Rector has the vigorous species R. multiflora in its parentage, and, as a result, it grows very large sending out long canes. This is a good rose to plant beside trees to grow into tree's branches. The small blooms flower in clusters. It's hardy from zones 5 to 9.


Altissimo is a large flowered red climber. Plant against pillars or trellises on the east side of the house to ensure it gets morning sun. It offers repeat blooms from spring to fall. Altissimo is hardy from zones 4 to 9.


Heritage is a David Austin shrub rose that will tolerate semi-shaded conditions. Like most English roses, it has an old rose appearance with pink cup-shaped blooms. It's a vigorous hardy shrub from zones 4 to 9.

The Fairy

The polyantha rose, The Fairy, blooms in scentless, pink clusters over a long period. It will trail along walls and fences partly shadowed by trees and hedges. The Fairy is hardy from zones 4 to 9.

Cecile Brunner

Cecile Brunner is another polyantha shrub with pink blooms growing in clusters. This rose repeats throughout the growing season. It is a low-growing shrub with a sweet to spicy scent. Cecile Brunner is hardy from zones 4 to 9.


Ballerina will grow well in light shade blooming well with its first early flush with a second major flush of bloom in fall. The flowers are small, single petalled and cup shaped. It is scentless and hardy from zones 4 to 9.


Kiftsgate is a climber that will grow through open tree branches. It blooms in sprays of tiny white flowers on vigorous canes. Kiftsgate is a scented rose, hardy from zones 4 to 9. This rose needs room to spread out.

Konigin von Danemark

The old rose, Konigin von Danemark, has tight pink blooms, flowering in clusters in summer. It's not a repeat bloomer. Plant it in an open airy location where it will get morning sun, and it will perform well. Konigin von Danemark is hardy from zones 4 to 9.

Blanc Double de Coubert

Some rugosa roses will perform well in dappled shade. Blanc Double de Coubert blooms in sprays of white flowers. It will grow taller than most rugosa roses reaching 6 feet, even in the colder climates. Blanc Double de Coubert is hardy from zones 3 to 10.

American Pillar

American Pillar is a traditional rambler for country gardens scrambling over fences and into trees to 20 feet or more. It blooms on vigorous canes with pink clusters. American Pillar is susceptible to mildew and is hardy from zones 5 to 10.

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About the Author

Canadian writer Lorraine Syratt has been writing since 1980. She obtained her journalism credentials from Conestoga College and has since had work published with "Canadian Living Magazine," "Treasures" and "Mountainside Fitness."