How to Train Climbing Roses for Trellising


Climbing roses make a dramatic addition to any garden or outdoor space. When grown against a trellis, the visual effect is enhanced and the health and vigor of the rose will be increased as more sunlight will reach deeply into the plant. Climbing roses can easily be trained to scramble up a wood, metal or wire trellis that is freestanding, mounted in a large container or attached to a wall or fence.

Step 1

Plant climbing roses within a foot or so of the bottom edge of the trellis. Use temporary wooden stakes driven into the soil to make the connection if your climbing rose is very small or the trellis is placed very high.

Step 2

Attach the largest canes to the trellis with lengths of flexible green garden ties tied securely (but not tightly) around the canes. Spread the canes (without over-stressing or breaking them) so they are attached to the trellis in as close to a horizontal position as possible to increase flowering and encourage lateral canes to develop.

Step 3

Attach new canes to the trellis as they grow long enough to meet the trellis. Coax the canes into a lateral position and tie them down lightly.

Step 4

Prune climbing roses infrequently and lightly with secateurs as they flower on the current year's growth. Remove dead, diseased, broken or otherwise damaged canes as you see them throughout the growing season. Dead head spent blooms back to just a 1/4-inch above a bud or leaf axil.

Step 5

Control the size of the rose if needed by pruning lateral branches back in the winter when the rose is dormant, leaving four buds on each branch. Revitalize older, bare lower canes by cutting one or two of the canes back to the crown of the plant every year or two in winter so new growth can merge to fill in the empty space.

Things You'll Need

  • Trellis
  • Wooden stakes
  • Flexible green garden ties
  • Secateurs


  • North Carolina State University: Training Pruning Vines
  • Texas A&M University: Landscaping With Old Garden Roses
Keywords: train climbing roses, growing climbing roses on a trellis, attaching roses to a support

About this Author

An omni-curious communications professional, Dena Kane has more than 17 years of experience writing and editing content for online publications, corporate communications, business clients, industry journals, as well as film and broadcast media. Kane studied political science at the University of California, San Diego.