Climbing roses make a beautiful addition to any garden. Nothing looks quite as lovely as a beautiful rose climbing over a trellis, pergola, fence or arbor. Climbing roses are dense enough to create privacy, shade or to hide unsightly areas but to be effective they must be healthy and produce lots of flowers.
Too often climbing roses are left to fend for themselves and become leggy and weak with a few flower bunches at the top of the canes. Good soil, sun and fertilizer are all important but where most of us fail is in the pruning or lack of it. To grow beautiful climbers you need to understand how they grow and what their blooming habits are. By proper and regular pruning you can then train them to perfection.
Tips for Encouraging Rose Blooms:
- Climbing roses bloom on new stems that grow on old wood, so proper rose pruning is essential for maximum flower power. Prune your climbers in late winter or early spring to encourage new lateral flowering stems. It is these new lateral stems that will produce the most flowers.
- Situate your roses in full sun, at least 6 to 8 hours of direct sun each day.
- Fertilize your climbers with a formula specific for roses. Phosphorous is essential for blooms and roses are heavy feeders. Avoid high nitrogen fertilizers as this will encourage leaf growth at the expense of flowers.
- Horizontal canes produce more blooms than vertical ones so tie young canes to your trellis to get them to grow horizontally. The flowers on climbing roses develop at the tips of the shoots so if you allow the shoots to grow straight up, you’ll only get blooms right at the top of the plant.
- Keep your roses well watered, they should never dry out.
- Mulch the base of your roses with an organic compost to help retain soil moisture.
Easy Care Roses for Training:
Here are a few climbing roses that are reliable and fairly easy to grow.
BLAZE / DUBLIN BAY / NEW DAWN / WILLIAM BAFFIN / MADAME ALFRED CARRIERE
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(some photos are compliments of Pixabay) (some links go to my affiliate Amazon account)