Brochures

Trees & Shrubs

Shrub Roses Selection & Care

Selection & Care

Hardy shrub roses are a group that will survive and thrive in Calgary’s unpredictable weather.  This group of hardy shrubs requires minimal winter protection.  Most varieties flower more than once over the course of a season.  Usually produce a rounded, dense shrub with rich dark green leaves that turn yellow in the fall.

Culture

  • sunny location, at least 6 hours of sun a day
  • rich, well-drained, slightly acidic soil
  • add organic matter such as compost and manure on an annual bases to add nutrients to the soil
  • keep well water, especially during establishment
  • fertilize on a regular bases from May to the end of July
  • avoid wetting foliage

Planting: (container stock)

  • can be planted throughout the season
  • plant at same depth as plant was in the pot - if variety is grafted plant graft union 2 inches below ground level
  • dig hole twice as wide and one and a half times the depth of the container
  • amend soil with organic matter and peat moss
  • remove container and gently loosen roots from root ball to encourage roots to spread 
  • place in hole, fill around root ball with amended soil and gently pack soil around the base
  • water until soil is soaked
  • it’s a good idea to make a well around the base of the plant to hold water.
  • applying a mulch around the base will help maintain soil moisture
  • keep well watered

Pruning

  • requires little pruning
  • remove dead, diseased and broken branches in the spring
  • once the bush is 3-4 years old, remove up to a third of the oldest, thickest canes to the ground.  This helps rejuvenate the shrubs and encourages vigorous growth and flower production
  • do not prune newer growth more than one to two feet from the ground, this will limit flower production!
  • always try to remove crossing and inward growing branches or canes
  • try to maintain good air circulation - if the center of the plant is really crowded try to thin out some branches to allow for air circulation
**For the most part hardy shrub roses require minimal care, but they need a sunny location, ample water and fertilizer.

Different categories of Hardy Shrub Roses

Explorer Series
  • developed through Agriculture Canada
  • named in honour of early explorers
  • bred from crosses of Rosa rugosa and Rosa kordesii
  • extremely hardy, easy care 
  • resistant to black spot and powdery mildew
  • include climbers, groundcovers and hedging types
Parkland Series
  • developed at Agriculture Canada’s Morden, Manitoba, Research Center
  • bred by crossing Rosa arkansas with floribunda and hybrid tea roses
  • grown on their own roots (not grafted)
  • bloom on new wood, repeat bloomer
  • semi-double to double blooms
  • very hardy
Species Roses (wild roses)
  • other hardy shrub roses are derived from the species roses
  • grown on their own rootstocks
  • extremely hardy, require minimal pruning
  • most species roses bloom once except rugosas which bloom repeatedly
  • tough, long lived, able to withstand insects, diseases and harsh climates 
  • excellent salt tolerance
Hardy Roses
  • encompass all roses that don’t fall under any of the other categories
  • include all groundcovers, tall/medium sized bushes, climbers and hedging types.  

Protection

Most hardy roses do not require winter protection.  However to increase success during mild and harsh winters it’s a good idea to apply a winter protection. 

Method 1

Apply 5 inch mulch around the base of the plant to provide insulation for the roots.

Method 2

Mound soil at least 30 cm (12 inches) around base of plants after mound freezes cover with a thick layer of mulch (leaves, grass clippings, bark mulch).  Add a second layer of heavier mulch (straw, bark).  Wrap wire container around plant—this holds protection in place, lets water drain.

Alternately, you can place a box or styrofoam rose cone over the plant.  This will help hold the protective mulch around the base of the plant. 

 

 

Rose Descriptions

EXPLORER ROSES

Alexander Mackenzie

medium red

5-6' / 4-5'

moderate

Captain Samuel Holland

medium red

6-8' / 4-5'

mild

Champlain

dark red

3-4' / 3-4'

mild

Charles Albanel

red purple

1-2' / 2-3'

moderate

David Thompson

dark fuchsia

3-4' / 4-5'

moderate

Frontenac

dark pink

4-5' / 4-5'

mild

George Vancouver

medium red

2-2.5' / 2-2.5'

mild

Henry Hudson

white

1.5-3' / 3-4'

strong

Henry Kelsey

medium red

7-8' / 6-8'

moderate

JP Connell

light yellow

3-4' / 3-4'

mild

Jens Munk

pink

4-5' / 5-6'

strong

John Cabot

medium red

8-10' / 5-7'

moderate

John Davis

medium pink

5-6' / 4-6'

mild

John Franklin

medium red

3-4' / 3-3.5'

mild

Lambert Closse

pale pink

2.5-3' / 2.5-3'

strong

Louis Jolliet

medium pink

4-5' / 3-4'

strong

Marie Victorin

pink

3-4' / 4-5'

mild

Martin Frobisher

light pink

5-6' / 4-5'

moderate

Quadra

dark red

5-6' / 4-5'

mild

Royal Edward

medium pink

1-2' / 1-2'

mild

Simon Fraser

medium pink

2-2.5' / 2-3'

mild

William Baffin

dark pink

8-10' / 5-6'

mild

PARKLAND ROSES

Adelaide Hoodless

medium red

5-6' / 5-6'

mild

Cuthbert Grant

dark red

3-4' / 3-4'

mild

Hope For Humanity

blood red

3-4' / 3-4'

mild

Morden Amorette

cardinal red

1-2'/1-2'

mild

Morden Belle

medium pink

2.5' / 2.5'

mild

Morden Blush

light pink

2-3' / 2-3'

mild

Morden Centennial

medium pink

3-4' / 3'

mild

Morden Fireglow

orange-red

2-3' / 2-3'

mild

Morden Ruby

ruby-red

3-4' / 3-3.5'

mild

Morden Snowbeauty

white

2-3' / 2-3'

mild

Morden Sunrise

yellow with orange/pink

2-2.5' / 2-2.5'

mild

Winnipeg Parks

dark pink-red

2' / 2'

mild

SPECIES ROSES

Prickly Rose

light pink

3-4' / 3-4'

moderate

Red Leaf Rose

pink

5-6' / 5-6'

mild

HARDY SHRUB ROSES

Agnes

light yellow

5-6' / 5-6'

strong

Austrian Copper

orange

3-4' / 3-4'

moderate

Blanc de Coubert

white

4-6' / 4-5'

strong

Bonica

pink

3' / 3'

moderate

Dart’s Dash

mauve-red

4-5' / 4-6'

strong

Pink Grootendorst

pink

5'/5'

mild

Father Hugo

pale to bright yellow

8' / 8'

mild

Frau Dagmar Hastrup

pink

2-3' / 4-5'

strong

Hansa

dark pink

4-5' / 5-6'

strong

Hunter

red

3' / 4'

mild

Kimberley

pink

3-4' / 4-5'

strong

Knockout

dark red-pink

3' / 3'

mild

Maigold

coppery yellow

3-8' / 3-6'

strong

Moje hammarberg

purplish-red

4' / 4'

strong

Nearly Wild

bright pink

2-3' / 2-3'

mild

Persian Yellow

yellow

5-6' / 5-6'

mild

Polostar

white

10-15' / 5-6'

mild

Prairie Dawn

pink

4-5' / 4-5'

moderate

Prairie Joy

pink

4-5' / 4-5'

moderate

Ramblin’Red

red

6-10' / 8'

mild

Roseraie L’Hay

crimson-purple

5-6' / 6-7'

strong

Scabrosa

magenta

5' / 6'

strong

Theresa Bugnet

medium pink

5-6' / 4-5'

moderate

Topaz Jewel

yellow

3-3.5' / 3-3.5'

moderate

Wasagaming

dark pink

5-6' / 5-6'

strong

White Rugosa

white

4-6' / 4-6'

strong

Double White Rugosa

white

4-6' / 4-6'

very strong

PAVEMENT ROSES

Dwarf

bright pink

2.5-3 / 2.5-3

strong

Foxi

dark pink

2.5-3 / 2.5-3

strong

Pierette

dark pink

3-4' / 2'

very strong

Pristine

white

3' / 3'

strong

Purple

purple-red

3-4' / 3'

strong

Rugelda

yellow

2' / 3'

strong

Snow

white blushed

3-4' / 3'

strong