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Rose Types -From Hybrid Tea To Miniature

There are so many different types of roses, making a choice can be confusing to say the least. hybrid Teas, floribundas, miniatures, where do you start?

Right here! Find out some general information on rose types, then take a closer look at each variety to see what's the right rose for YOUR garden.

Rose types have been re-classified, in 1979, by the World Federation of Rose Societies but both the old and the new designations are still in use nowadays, so for usefulness, you will find below both classifications for each type of rose. A few varieties are difficult to classify, fitting more in between, then a sole classification. Use the types below as a guide to find the perfect rose for you.

Being one of the oldest plants cultivated, besides the varieties that occur naturally, there are hundreds of varieties that have been bred throughout its history. Every year brings new ones to fall in love with and usually you will find them being presented on flower shows, like the famous Chelsea Flower Show.

Large-flowered bush roses also known as Hybrid Teas (HTs)

yellow rose
This type of rose is by far the most popular around the world and can fit any style of garden. They are repeat-flowering (remontant) roses, usually lasting all summer, with 1 flower or groups of 3 large flowers at the end of each stem. Flowers can be found in many colors and are perfect for cut flowers.

They are often used for formal rose gardens and look great in beds, even without companion plants. They require a heavy prune every spring. In catalogues they are usually described as large-flowered roses.

See More on Hybrid Tea Roses

Cluster-flowered bush roses also known as Floribundas

These are very harmonious plants that are great for mixed borders. The plant is an upright shrub, with smaller flowers then the Hybrid Tea that appear in large sprays or trusses and are often fragrant. Usually flowering is continuous during summer and autumn.

Cutting dead flowers (deadheading) will result in an increase of new flowers. They need a heavy prune after flowering season.

See more on Floribundas

Shrub roses

Shrub is often used as a "catch all" for roses that simply don't fit into any other catagory. These may have less flowers then the two rose types before, sometimes single or semi-double blooms. After flowering, they can develop interesting looking hips and dried seed cases, which makes it a favourite with birds and adds interest to the garden for a longer period of the year. Sometimes rose books refer to hips as "heps", because the word originally comes from the Middle English "hepe".

This type may require more minimal pruning and works very well in mixed borders. Is very useful also for hedges and beddings.

Rosa rugosa for instance, is very good for edges with flowers and can be used to enclose a rose garden. It's a tough rose so can adapt to most conditions.

Individual varieties included in this type are Albas, Bourbons, China, Centifolias, Moss, Damasks, Gallicas, Hybrid Musks, Hybrid Perpetuals, Modern Shrubs, New English, Rugosas, Species (also called wild roses).

Patio and Miniature Roses

Miniatures are versions of roses that are smaller in size. They are ideal for window boxes, pots and containers. Usually grow to around 35 cm / 14 inches and can have double or semi-double flowers. These are great to add color and fragrant to a patio or enclosed garden.

Some varieties have been bred specifically for patios and are called patio roses. They are usually dwarf cluster-flowered (or floribunda) bush roses. As compact small plants, these work very nice in containers. While in containers, the plants need lots of care, being very dependent of regular watering and feeding.

Combine the mini roses with different types of window boxes, to achieve different decorating effects. Pink flowers with metal add a nice touch to any place and terracotta is great for cottage gardens. Zinc and other metal window boxes can be used for a more modern style, combined for instance with white roses. Mix it with ivy, lavandula or rosemary and will have lots of fragrances. Positioned near a window or seating place, will create more opportunities for you to enjoy the fragrances.

Miniatures roses can also be used to create miniature gardens, outdoors or inside the home.

Read more on Miniatures

Climbers and Ramblers

Though different varieties of climbers have different flowering times, it's usually around summer to autumn. These plants have strong long shoots and large flowers, which in some cases are in clusters.

Climbers are great over an arch or door, making a front entrance that welcomes everyone. Used over a pergola can make a romantic seating place on your garden. The stems should be guided from early one, otherwise they will shoot fast vertically and it will more difficult to get a harmonious plant shape and enjoy the view of the flowers and their fragrance.

Read more about Climbers

Ramblers are vigorous plants and need careful pruning and guidance to get the effect one wants in the garden, otherwise they will quickly take over. Flowers are large, in large clusters, around early summer. Stems are flexible and can be trained over small trees, walls, pergolas or just left suspended on air. There are also quite a few ramblers that are thornless roses.

Read more about Ramblers


These roses tend to be only about half a meter in height, grow quickly and easily, and are disease resistant. They often lose leafs during winter and flower for long months in spring and summer. Some varieties grow in dense groups, others cover the ground with their long stems.

Ground cover roses need very little pruning. Some really just need a cut on a sick or dead stem that might appear. The very robust ones might go a bit wild if not taken in the right direction. Cut them to limit them to the space and directions of growing, you want them to follow. If you have very long and unsteady stems, you might want to use wire to secure them to the ground. Sometimes this results in better flowering and some stems create roots.

Trailing roses can also be used for hanging baskets. Use floor and wall supports to hang baskets at different levels, so you can enjoy better the flowers, whether you are sitting or strolling.

Read More About Groundcover Roses like Knockout

Rose Flower Forms

Flowers can be found with the following forms:

pink rose
  • Rounded
  • Cupped
  • Flat
  • Urn-shaped
  • Rosette
  • Quartered rosette
  • Pompon
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