Shrub Rose

These tough plants have all the beauty of a rose, with less hassle.

Colorful Combinations

There are so many shrub roses on the market and seemingly more new varieties every year. With almost every color to choose from (except true blue and green), shrub roses pair well with many other plants. The deep green foliage of shrub roses also creates a beautiful backdrop to numerous annuals and perennials, as well as formal rose blooms themselves.

Shrub Rose Care Must-Knows

Shrub roses are one of the easiest classes of roses on the market to grow. These tough roses have been bred to have the best attributes of all classes.

Like all roses, shrub rose requires full sun, allowing the plant to bloom to its fullest extent on sturdy limbs. When planting your roses, make sure they're in well-drained soil. If in doubt, it never hurts to amend the soil with a small amount of peat and potting soil.

In many climates, roses are susceptible to foliar diseases, like black spot and mildews. This risk is drastically increased when your plant is in anything less than full sun. Luckily, shrub roses are more resistant to many of these problems.

Pruning Shrub Roses

Shrub roses are some of the easiest roses to prune and the most foolproof. Even if you don't prune shrub roses yearly, they'll still bloom. The most essential pruning rule with shrub roses is to remove any dead, damaged, or diseased growth as soon as possible. This is typically done in late winter/early spring, just before the buds break.

Also, look for branches touching or rubbing together, as this can create a spot for disease to fester. If your shrub roses have been around for a while, removing some of the older growth can be beneficial. This will open up the interior to improve air circulation and promote fresh new growth from the base.

Since shrub roses are generally repeat bloomers, it is best to continually deadhead old blossoms to encourage rebloom.

More Varieties of Shrub Rose

Shrub Rose Overview

Genus Name Rosa
Common Name Shrub Rose
Plant Type Rose, Shrub
Light Sun
Height 1 to 3 feet
Width 1 to 15 feet
Flower Color Orange, Pink, Purple, Red, White, Yellow
Foliage Color Blue/Green
Season Features Fall Bloom, Spring Bloom, Summer Bloom, Winter Interest
Special Features Attracts Birds, Cut Flowers, Fragrance, Good for Containers, Low Maintenance
Zones 10, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
Propagation Grafting, Seed, Stem Cuttings

Ballerina rose

ballerina rose with pink blooms
Doug Hetherington

Rosa 'Ballerina' bears a delicate pastel combination of deep rosy pink and white petals in the single flowers from late spring through fall. Small rose hips follow, brightening the bare tips through the winter and attracting birds. It grows 6 feet tall. Zones 6-9

Blanc Double de Coubert rose

blanc double de coubert rose with white flowers
Mary Carolyn Pindar

Rosa 'Blanc Double de Coubert' is a vigorous antique from late-19-century France. It produces extremely fragrant, semidouble blooms in clusters. A good repeat bloomer, it grows up to 7 feet tall. Zones 3-9

Bonica rose

pink bonica rose 'meidomonac'
Stephen Cridland

Rosa 'Meidomonac' was one of the first shrub roses, and this award winner is still one of the best. It delivers a disease-resistant performance, soft pink flowers spring to fall, and orange hips that bring winter interest to the garden. It grows 5 feet tall and 4 feet wide. Zones 4-9

Carefree Beauty rose

carefree beauty rose 'bucbi' with double pink blooms
Michael Mckinley

Rosa 'Bucbi' set a standard for disease resistance coupled with continuous bloom. Its double, soft pink blooms repeat reliably from early summer to fall on upright plants. At maturity, it reaches 5 feet tall and 3 feet wide. Zones 4-9.

Carefree Spirit rose

carefree spirit rose 'meizmea' with red flowers
Denny Schrock

Rosa 'Meizmea' is an award-winning variety with cherry-red flowers in a continuous show from late spring through fall. The plant is vigorous and covered with dark green foliage. Grows 5 feet tall and wide. Zones 5-9

Carefree Wonder rose

carefree wonder rose 'meipitac'
Janet Mesic Mackie

Rosa 'Meipitac' bears fully double, baby pink blooms abundantly all summer on a disease-resistant plant. It grows 4 feet tall and 3 feet wide. Zones 4-9

Home Run rose

red home run rose 'wekcisbako'
Justin Hancock

Rosa 'Wekcisbako' shows single, bright red blooms that open to reveal gold stamens. The deepest color occurs in cold temperatures. A quick repeat bloomer, the plant requires light shaping to train its strong shoots. It's resistant both to black spot and powdery mildew. The rounded plant grows 4 feet tall and wide. Zones 4-9

Daydream Rose

daydream rose 'dicjeep' with bright pink blooms
Doug Hetherington

Rosa 'Dicjeep' is an award-wining variety with vivid, deep-pink blooms that cover the low-growing plant (2 feet tall and wide). The leaves are glossy and show excellent disease resistance. Zones 4-9

Hansa rose

hansa rose rugosa 'hansa' with red-violet blooms
Stephen Cridland

Rosa rugosa 'Hansa' bears red-violet, cupped blooms packed with many clove-scented petals. Early, abundant flowering is followed by repeat bloom later in the season. The plant exhibits many traits of its rugosa heritage: disease resistance, thorniness, and extreme cold hardiness. It grows 5 feet tall. Zones 4-9

John Cabot rose

john cabot rose with deep fuchsia-pink blooms
Doug Hetherington

Rosa 'John Cabot' is a tall, vigorous variety that yields clusters of deep fuchsia-pink, fragrant blooms. The plant grows 6 feet tall. Zones 3-8

Knock Out rose

detail of Rose 'Knock Out' shrub
Justin Hancock

Rosa 'Radrazz' is an award-winning variety with cherry-pink blooms that have white centers and cover the plant. Small orange hips carry the show into late fall and appeal to the birds. The plants are extremely disease resistant and grow about 3 feet tall. Zones 5-9

Little Mischief rose

compact little mischief rose 'baiief' with deep pink blooms
Justin Hancock

Rosa 'Baiief' is a compact shrub that features deep pink, white-eyed blooms that fade to a lighter pink as they mature. The clustered flowers are cupped and semidouble. The disease-resistant plant grows 3 feet tall and wide. Zones 4-9

Snowdrift rose

white snowdrift rose 'bairift' with multi-petaled white blooms
Justin Hancock

Rosa 'Bairift' features full, multipetaled white blooms opening from plump light apricot buds. The flowers appear in bunches on an upright, vigorous plant. Zones 4-9

Sunrise Sunset rose

sunrise sunset rose 'baiset' with pink flowers
John Reed Forsman

Rosa 'Baiset' is an outstanding, heavy-blooming selection that offers bright pink flowers that blend to warm peachy-pink at the center. It grows 4 feet tall and wide. Zones 4-9

Super Hero rose

red super hero rose 'baisuhe'
Marty Baldwin

Rosa 'Baisuhe' is a disease-resistant, everblooming selection with rich red flowers. It grows 5 feet tall and 4 feet wide. Zones 4-9

William Baffin rose

william baffin rose with double deep pink blooms
Lynn Karlin

Rosa 'William Baffin' is free-flowering and laden with double, deep pink bloom clusters on glossy, disease-resistant foliage. The blooms are lightly fragrant. Plants grow from 7 to 9 feet tall. Zones 3-8

Garden Plans for Shrub Rose

Clay Soil Garden

clay soil garden plan illustration
Illustration by Mavis Augustine Torke

Even if you're stuck with heavy, clay soil, you can still grow a lovely garden. Follow this garden plan for a stunning design that can hold up to dense soil.

Get this garden plan!

Easy-Care Summer-Blooming Shade Garden Plan

easy-care summer shade garden plan
Illustration by Mavis Augustine Torke

This mix of flowering shrubs and perennials will fill your yard with color all summer long—plus provide interest in spring, fall, and winter.

Download this free plan now.

Easy-Care Rose Garden Plan

easy-care rose garden plan
Illustration by Tom Rosborough

These beautiful roses bloom all summer long and are practically carefree.

Get this garden plan!

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