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Types of Climbing Roses

By Melody Lee ; Updated September 21, 2017

Climbing roses do not have tendrils and do not twist or twine around their supports. Most types of climbing roses are sports (mutations) of bush-type roses that have developed extremely long canes. Tie the canes to a trellis, arbor or fence for vertical support. Ramblers and creepers are types of roses that can be used as groundcovers or trained as climbers.

Cold-Hardy Climbing Roses

Cold-hardy climbing roses can survive low winter temperatures with no protection. Polyantha climbing roses bear large clusters of fragrant flowers almost constantly during the warm season. The blooms may be single, semi-double or double. The plants are fairly disease resistant and have few or no thorns. Everblooming climbing roses bloom in late spring with sporadic flushes during the summer and fall. The flowers are borne in small clusters on vigorous plants.

Non-Cold-Hardy Climbing Roses

Non-cold-hardy climbing roses need some protection during the winter, such as a thick layer of mulch or plant covers. Hybrid tea climbing roses have large blooms, which are often fragrant. The plants are susceptible to diseases and pests. A floribunda climbing rose is a cross between a hybrid and polyantha climbing rose that blooms almost constantly. It has small flowers in dense clusters. The plants will tolerate some neglect. A grandiflora climbing rose is a cross between a hybrid and a floribunda climbing rose. It is a vigorous plant with more flowers than a hybrid climbing rose, but smaller blooms.

Groundcover Roses For Supports

A creeper-type rose is usually used as a groundcover, but the plant can be attached to a trellis or other support as a climbing rose. Rambler roses can grow as much as 20 feet in one season and are suited for growing along a fence. They bear small flowers in clusters in the spring. Rambler roses are susceptible to mildew.


About the Author


Melody Lee holds a degree in landscape design, is a Florida Master Gardener, and has more than 30 years of gardening experience. She currently works as a writer and copy editor. Her previous jobs include reporter, photographer and editor for a weekly newspaper.