How to Buy Climbing Roses


Climbing roses provide more than beautiful, fragrant flowers. They can define the borders of a property, add texture and color to a simple porch or even disguise an ugly fence. The term "climbing" is not accurate for roses; they do not twine around their supports, but instead produce long canes that must be secured to their support. Climbing roses come in a variety of hybrid teas, ramblers, floribundas and creeping, as well as old-garden roses. There are several things to take into consideration when selecting which climbing rose to buy.

Step 1

Select the location for the climbing rose. Although most roses need at least six hours of sunlight every day, there are some climbing roses that can grow in partial shade, says Patsy Cunningham of the Rhode Island Rose Society. If the climbing rose will be planted in partial shade, morning sun is preferable to afternoon sun.

Step 2

Select the support for the climbing rose, which will determine which variety of rose to buy. When mature, climbing roses grow from 8-to-15 feet or taller. Supports can vary from fences to porch rails to free-standing trellises.

Step 3

Choose a rose that is hardy for your USDA Hardiness Zone. Some climbing roses require extra winter protection, which can include removing them from their support and partially burying them, Cunningham says.

Step 4

Select a rose that fits your preferences. These may include the shape and color of the petals, fragrance, whether the rose is a continuous bloomer or whether the variety is disease and pest resistant.

Step 5

Choose a climbing rose according to its grade. Vigor and size determine grade, according to the University of Missouri Extension; the lower the number the better the grade.

Tips and Warnings

  • Avoid planting the rose up against a wall, since the wall can restrict the air flow to the rose and increase the rose's susceptibility to disease.


  • Rhode Island Rose Society: Introduction to Climbing Roses by Patsy Cunningham
  • Kansas State University: Growing Roses
  • University of Missouri Extension: Roses, Selecting and Planting

Who Can Help

  • American Rose Society
Keywords: roses, climbing roses, selecting roses

About this Author

After attending Hardin Simmons University, Kay Dean finished her formal education with the Institute of Children's Literature. Since 1995, Dean has written more than 2,000 articles for publications including “PB&J,” Disney’s “Family Fun,” “ParentLife,” "Living With Teenagers,” and Thomas Nelson’s New York Times best-selling “Resolve.” After 17 years of homeschooling her five children, Dean discovered that motherhood doesn’t stop with an empty nest.