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 Warm Welcome, a miniature climber, by our front door.


 The bottom right hand corner of a 5 metre high Maigold.


Do you want photos, or discussions on how to grow roses, or both?

Does anyone know how old climbing roses live to? Some of mine are about 22 years old and getting quite woody.


Great idea for the topic thread.  I have little experience with roses, would love to have more but due to my uncertainty of how to best care for them, I've limited myself in the past to buying cheaply from DIY centres - and this for me has been disappointing. e.g. last year I set out to purchase 2 white roses, highly scented.  And there were two roses labelled 'white' and 'highly fragranced'.  I eagerly planted both.  They were both pink.  Had no fragrance whatsoever and the stems after early spring pruning are extremely thin and cannot support the flowers when they bloom.  In this instance, I feel the labelling was careless and obviously wrong.  Could have happened when bulk supplies of roses were being moved around, or perhaps were labelled incorrectly by the supplier.  In any case, it put me of spending any more money on cheapies.

I inherited 8 roses over 20 years old from my late mother's garden and each of us in the family shared her roses.  Sadly I lacked the knowledge and confidence to take cuttings in order to continue her devotion over many years and in my garden they have not done well at all after the first year.  And they were beautiful roses but I just didn't know how best to care for them because of their age and didn't recognise what signs the plants were showing in order to truly save them and do the right thing.

Pansyface - I am thrilled to see your rose Warm Welcome.  My OH spent 10 months in hospital this last year and I used to visit him every day in an area not well known to me.  Every day I would pass a house which had this glorious rose growing up the sides of their front door and it was both cheering to see and a real stunner.  Looking at your photograph, I have a strong feeling that it as indeed your Warm Welcome rose.

I love roses but no matter how I improve very poor soil in this city garden, I don't think it will ever really sustain good roses.  We are surrounded by high buildings and tend to get much humidity and dampness in the summer months and I don't think the lack of good air circulation is that great for roses and mildew is a real problem.  Also, even the existing roses of my late mum's which were scented don't give off much fragrance in this garden and I suspect that that too is the humid conditions.  Is this possible?

I would really need to find disease resistant, very strong growers which could survive in not ideal conditions and I would love the miracle of fragrance which I have not been able to attain so far.  I need any advice I can get.

I'm sorry my posts tend to be very lengthy.  It's just so great for me to find other people so into gardening that I tend to blurt out my thoughts like an avalanche and forget to stop.  Apologies everyone.


Don't apologise Yarrow - great to hear your thoughts.


I grow lots of roses - they seem to like our quite heavy clay.  But they also get 2 mulches of FYM a year, and get fed Potash in Feb, and roes fertiliser in April and June, so they don't go hungry.  Most of mine are now 4 years old, nearly all from David Austin as bare roots, and are beginning to fill out nicely.  Will be following this thread with interest to see if there are more tips to pick up.  And in the meantime, here is Gertrude J ....



Love the warm welcome, Pansy, such an unusual colour.
I have one small inherited rose, probably 'masquerade' (used to be able to spell that!). The other I bought this year, David austins generous gardener. This was bought after phone advice from'david austin' and will hopefully be trained as a climber. I wanted a fairly thorn free rose, but it does seem to have quite a few. I read last night that the thorns are to help the rose climb, hence why a thornless climber is difficult to find. Always thought roses were ' a bit too difficult' and im hoping this thread helps with that stumbling block.
Steve 309

Not that much into ornamentals myself, but I do like a nice rose.  And these pics look lovely.My mum has a few here in stony clay in N London; and they never have more than a few flowers each.  How can I persuade them to be more forthcoming?

(Well, Steve, it depends.  Are they being fed?  Do you prune them properly?)

david what would we do without you, thankyou, chicky i love gertrude, mine has 2 lovely flowers and lots of buds, i go out to smell my roses early each morning and evening, i am a beginner certainly, but i love roses so much that since we've lived here i've bought 11, brought gertrude from old house and inherited one! i still have 2 or 3 on my wishlist, i followed planting instructions carefully and pruned and mulched and fed this spring, all look pretty good but hope they will all become more floriferous in time

ooh just saw mrs g i i have benerous gardener, had to move the poor thing and it went into 'rrotshoick' but after following advice from david austin phone helpline and of course here, it's recovering very nicely, zepherine drouhin is a thornless climber, i have that too


I only put the photos there to bump David's thread up the line. I am no rose grower. In fact, I can only grow climbers and ramblers. Anything that requires a skill in pruning immediately bites the dust. My "pruning" involves a quick once over with the hedge shears.

Yarrow, I'm glad that you like Warm Welcome. He's a cheery little chappie and, as I've said, doesn't mind working with amateurs. 


I missed Bev's first thread. How did that happen? I always look at rose threads. Must have been a day when there were a lot of them.

We bought this house in Dordogne in 1990, an old farmhouse on limestone, uninhabited for 6 years.  After getting the house habitable we planned and planted the garden in '92. But it has evolved since. I planted about 70 roses, mostly climbers and shrubs, adding lots of farmyard manure from the local farmer. The soil was fairly awful, sticky and stony. But the roses did very well and looked lovely. THEN the deer  discovered them. Some were so badly eaten they died. Now the main flower garden has a deer fence and I moved some of the others into pots around the house, but they need a lot of feeding and watering.

It gets hot here in summer and I find the roses need a good soak twice a week. Better that than a small watering daily. If a rose is dry it can't take up the nutrients from the ground or the fertiliser you have given it, then it gets ill more easily. A well fed, well watered rose is more disease resistant.

Some of the more modern roses, and a lot of David Austin's are disease resistant. At the RHS garden "Rosemoor" I was told that they only plant disease resistant roses.



 Cecile Brunner

 Wedding Day

 Forgotten the name, very scented

 A Shropshire Lad

 Suttar's Gold

 Paul's Scarlet


Some of my roses.



Beautiful roses everyone.  I particularly like"Meg" Lizzie as I'm always drawn to open types but don't have any.  I only have three - Iceberg, pink one from Aldiand Chandos Beauty which smells lovely.  I need a regime of feeding as I only do it when I remember and with whatever is in the garage.

This thread is going to be so helpful. Thanks David.


Beautiful roses, what a brilliant thread. Roses are definitely my favourite flowers, only have one at the moment bought From Chateux Villandry on a visit ti france about 3 years ago. The poor thing has been moved from pillar to post inits original pot until a few weeks ago. I took pity on it and planted it up into a huge pot (bed for it still not ready). It now has lots of buds and two open flowers, and smells heavenly. Only problem is the flowers seem to be too heavy for the branch, why is this do I need to feed it more? I did put some FBB in when I repotted it, and it has had loads of water.


If it has big flowers and healthy leaves then you have probably fed it enough. Some roses are just like that and may need a little tying to a discreet support. Do you know what variety it is?


gasp, lizzie they are so beautiful, i have such tiny garden but love roses so much, am fitting as many in as i can,back garden east facing, front west , both partial sun so do look for roses that say the're ok not in full sun though am sadly aware they may flower better in full sun


...such lovely roses...and a fine thread for this time of year...

..I like close ups, so here are a few of mine...

'Kew Gardens'....totally thornless...suitable for a pathway...

 ..gentle rambler 'Ghislaine de Feligonde'...nice rich colour I think..

 ...old rose and Hall of Fame-er 'Gruss an Teplitz'...has a scent to die for...

 'Bonica'....I think this is one of the finest shrubs, of any kind, that anyone can grow... fine foliage, disease free...continuous flowering...and another from the rose Hall of Fame...

 'Mortimer Sackler' upright climber...8 and foliage down to the ground...thornless from the knee up....lovely scent too...