Growing scented roses is at the heart of our business, but we often find people are worried about growing roses in their own gardens because of fears about thorns, maintenance, mildew and black spot. To make growing your own scented roses in a garden or container effortless, our founder and flower farmer Rosebie Morton has put together an edit of the four easiest roses to grow to give you the best results. Here Rosebie talks us through these four must-haves and sets out some simple steps to ensure your vase is brimming with homegrown roses next summer.

Choosing Which Rose To Grow

Margaret Merril

Margaret Merril is the quintessential English rose. From tight buds to fully open, she has the perfect shape – understated and elegant. She was one of my mother’s favourites and is the rose that inspired me to start growing roses and to set up The Real Flower Company. Margaret Merril is often regarded as being one of the best scented roses ever – her fragrance is absolutely exquisite. Margaret Merril grows delicately, so works really well in a pot or small space.

Quick facts

Family: Floribunda

Colour: White with a hint of blush

Scent: Highly scented, a classic rose scent with fresh citrus top notes

Repeat flowering

Ideal for pots, small spaces and borders

Size: 90cm tall x 60cm wide

Growing conditions: Full sun, all soil type. She is quite a delicate grower so will appreciate regular feeding and a good mulch in the winter.

Chandos Beauty

Chandos Beauty is Margaret Merril’s daughter and I often describe her as my perfect child as she has so many virtues: fragrance, an elegant symmetrical form, large flowers, upright strong stems, reliability and resilience to disease. Chandos Beauty is the perfect choice for borders, large beds or as part of a cutting garden.

Quick facts

Family: Rosaceae

Colour: Light blush apricot

Scent: Highly scented with a classic mix of fresh citrus combined with a sweet rose fragrance

Repeat flowering

Ideal for borders, large beds and cutting gardens

Size: 120cm tall x 90cm wide

Growing conditions: Full sun preferred but can also be grown in partial shade and in all soil types. Chandos beauty is very easy to grow!

A Whiter Shade of Pale

A Whiter Shade of Pale produces and abundance of fragrant beautifully formed blush pink flowers from midsummer right through to September. It tends to be a fast-growing rose with glossy green foliage.

Quick facts

Family: Hybrid tea

Colour: Blush pink

Scent: a sweet rosy scent

Repeat flowering

Ideal for borders, pots and cutting gardens

Size: 90cm tall x 90cm wide

Growing conditions: Full sun preferred.

Duchess of Cornwall

Duchess of Cornwall has full rosette-shaped blooms with up to a hundred petals that change colour from deep orange to delicate pink depending on the weather and growing conditions. A very healthy rose, Duchess of Cornwall is easy to grow and works well in both pots and borders.

Quick facts

Family: Hybrid tea

Colour: Deep, peachy apricot

Scent: Light spicy fragrance

Repeat flowering

Ideal for pots, small spaces and borders

Size: 90cm tall x 60cm wide

Growing conditions: Full sunlight, all soil types.

Compassion

Compassion is a great climbing rose with really beautiful, pinky apricot hybrid tea-shaped flowers and glossy dark green leaves. It’s very healthy and reliable and a wonderful choice if you are looking for a climbing rose. Compassion is widely accepted as one of the best climbers to grow.

Quick facts

Family: Climbing rose

Colour: Pinky apricot

Scent: Strong, sweet fragrance

Repeat flowering

Ideal for growing up a wall or fence, over a doorway or up the front of a house

Size: 2.5 to 4 metres tall x 1.5 to 2.5 metres wide

Growing conditions: Full or partial sunlight, all soil types.

When to plant your rose

Our rose plants can be planted at any time of year.

How to to plant your rose

  • 1. Choose a day when there’s no frost
  • 2. Remove the sleeve
  • 3. Soak the base of the rose in a bucket of water for an hour, ensuring that the roots are fully covered
  • 4. Dig a hole that’s at least twice the width of the roots and half a metre deep. Plant climbers such as Compassion at least 30cm from the wall of your house
  • 5. Dig in a handful of good-quality compost and a handful of Vitax Q4
  • 6. Make sure the top of the roots are at least 3cm below ground
  • 7. Add compost and some manure (if you have some) around the base and firm the plant in
  • 8. Water well

How to make your roses last

Winter

  • Cut off the top third of your roses.
  • In February cut right down to three to five buds from the base and feed with Vitax Q4 around the base of the plant, making sure it doesn’t touch the stem.
  • Spring/ Summer

    • Keep your roses well watered. Rainwater often doesn’t reach the roots. This is especially important with a newly planted rose which hasn’t yet had time to get established.
    • After the first flush of flowers, deadhead your rose
    • Feed your roses after the first flush, by adding some Vitax Q4 around the base of the plant but make sure it doesn’t touch the stem
    • Throughout the summer continue to pick the roses or deadhead regularly to prolong the flowering season.
    • Late Summer / Early Autumn

      • In the first year after planting all roses should be pruned but from the second year onwards climbers need to be treated slightly differently as they need to be trained to grow horizontally.


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