The Four Varieties of Modern Roses

When you say, “flower garden,” there is an almost infinite variety of blooms that can come to mind, but most people equate garden flowers with roses.  They are a beautiful and popular addition to any landscape, but there are different types.  Currently there are several hundreds of species in the Northern Hemisphere.

Roses have represented love, beauty, war, and politics over a long and colorful history. Evidence of the forerunners of roses have been found in ancient fossils. Roses started being cultivated more than 5,000 years ago. The Romans used roses as confetti at celebrations, for medicine, and as perfume. They were once used as legal tender, both as the flowers themselves or as rose water.  Some cuisines even incorporate rose petals or rose water.  Just about everyone is familiar with rose hip tea.

'Carefree Celebration'
‘Carefree Celebration’

There are several varieties of roses which can be used in Minnesota gardens.

  • Climbing roses are a cultivar that can be trained to grow up trellis, buildings, and arbors.’ William Baffin’, ‘John Davis’, and ‘Ramblin’ Red’ are popular ones.  They are vigorous growers, that don’t require pruning. They do need a lot of fertilizer and room to grow.
  • Shrub roses and rugosa roses are also very popular. They are winter hardy and easy to care for and work in gardens, hedges and even ground cover.  They don’t need to be cut back in the fall. They have a wilder appearance and don’t have as large blooms as hybrid roses.  They can be pruned in the spring to shape or manage the size. Some popular shrub roses include ‘Carefree’ (pink or yellow), ‘Knock Out’ (red or pink), ‘Magnifica’ (purple), ‘Therese Bugnet’ (pink), ‘Champlain’ (dark red), and ‘Easy Elegance.’
  • Hybrid teas and grandifloras roses are grown for their scent and perfect blossoms. They come in all colors, shapes, and sizes. They are also known for their long stems. They require the most care. They need frequent pruning, regular fertilizing, and vigilant disease prevention control.
  • Floribunda roses grow lower to the ground than the hybrid teas. They bloom heavily and have many blossoms on a stem.  They are good options for border plantings or massed beds of color. They make great bouquets with all their blooms. In the fall they need to be cut back to about a foot after the first heavy frost, mounded with soil around the base, and covered with rose cones.


If the idea of adding roses to the landscape around your Minneapolis area home appeals to you, please give us a call.  We’ll talk with you about your garden dreams and suggest a design to bring it to beautiful, blooming reality.