Roses forum: climbing rose

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Harper's Ferry, W.V.
Jun 16, 2017 8:46 AM CST
Hi, Thanks for taking time to answer garden questions!

I want to plant a couple climbing roses and a couple clematis together on an arbor. The site is our place on a mountain top (only 1500 fasl) about 10 miles south of Harper's Ferry, W.V. I think this is technically USDA zone 6b, but we have high winds up here in winter, so I nudge all considerations to a colder, harsher zone. Roots will be in a large raised bed with real soil, not just rocky, mountain soil; and this garden is protected from deer by a fence. A Knock-Out rose is doing just fine in its third year in this environment, just FYI.

I don't want to have to spray the roses, so please just tell me now if there are no climbers that are tough enough to do without spray. I don't want to spray and I don't want a bug-eaten mess.

Also, I want to try to have blooms on the wide sides of the arbor as well as the top, so does that require pruning to prevent all the action from going upward and upward? I don't mind pruning. I just need to know what to do.

I am open to any colors, except screamy lipstick red/fuchsia. I would love deep red, white, or yellow. Although I appreciate fragrance in roses, I would not consider that a criterion here.

Length of bloom is a consideration. I'm happy to deadhead to extend bloom, if that would help.

I would not do this planting until next spring. We have to rebuild the arbor, which has rotted.

So, are there any climbing roses that will succeed in these conditions, do you think? If so, can you tell me the names of them and any planting/care advice you have time to share?


Name: Suzanne/Sue
Sebastopol, CA (Zone 9a)
Sunset Zone 15
Plant Database Moderator Region: California Cottage Gardener Roses Irises Clematis
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Jun 16, 2017 9:31 AM CST


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Long Island, NY (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Jun 17, 2017 7:43 PM CST
The following are photos of the climbers I have here on Long Island 6B. I have not found it necessary to spray these climbers. We do have hurricanes nor'easters (winds) periodically. Some of my climbers are grown on metal obelisks which are secured with metal 12" tent stakes - winds.
Here is a link that you may find helpful:

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Name: Steve
Prescott, AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: Southwest Gardening Roses Irises Lilies
Jun 18, 2017 8:02 AM CST
Some totally gorgeous climbing roses, Margie. Thanks for sharing! Hurray!

I did not realize that Blaze could make such sultry, dark red roses. One usually sees them in the really dark pink shade of red. There's a delicate beauty to Lady Ashe that I find really striking.
When you dance with nature, try not to step on her toes.
Long Island, NY (Zone 6b)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Jun 18, 2017 9:51 AM CST
Thank you Steve. Yes, Blaze flowers are a deep rich red color and larger size than Red Corsair. Red Corsair flowers are a little smaller, a glowing red with a little white in the center - a real show stopper. Lady Ashe canes are very pliable - mine is wrapped around a 4" x 4" wooden post. When manipulating the canes to create a desirable effect on a post, obelisk or trellis, it's important to use the tender new canes while they are pliable as they get still stiff quickly. You have to keep on top of the situation (weekly) and not allow growth to go for too long a period of time. Position the canes in an "almost" horizontal position to promote more flowers. With my first attempt, I used pieces of pantyhose and twisty ties to secure the canes. Then Zuzu suggested velco tape to me which I ordered from Burpee's - a fantastic reusable product. Training roses does take some dedication but rewarding.

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Name: Steve
Prescott, AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: Southwest Gardening Roses Irises Lilies
Jun 19, 2017 9:53 AM CST
I'm training Orfeo on a pillar. It's not a fast grower, nor are its flowers huge. But it is cold hardy here, and the flowers have a unique structure. My roses seem to grow a little more slowly than a lot of people's, possibly because of our cool nights or because I underwater them. In any case this rose is about three years old, and I'm hoping it is a bit more impressive in three more years time. Also, I find that most of the roses hardy only to zone 6b fail from frost in my garden.

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When you dance with nature, try not to step on her toes.
[Last edited by Steve812 - Jun 19, 2017 11:58 AM (+)]
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