For as long as I can remember, I have been an avid gardener. It all began when I was a child and when I realized that my grandmother had the most exotic garden anywhere around my little town. My grandmother was a country lady, and she had a typical cottage or kitchen garden, but she didn’t grow roses. I am also a cottage or a kitchen gardener, but I DO grow roses, and I grow lots of them. Because I want to preserve as much soil as possible for my other plants, I only grow climbing roses.
But that is also part of my plan to turn my garden into a secret space that is bedecked by flowers up and down.
Nine rambling roses,
They stretch and strike their poses,
Blow sweetness at our noses,
Til dark, when daytime closes.
– Jacki Kellum –
My garden in my secret shrine and my roses are my jewels. At this point, I could not possibly say which rose is my favorite. Each one has its own calling card, but I’ll list the roses that I’ll grow in my new old garden.
Don Juan Climbing Rose Is America’s Favorite Climbing Rose.
This gorgeous red rose is the one that is most often given as a Valentine’s Day gift. It is fantastically fragrant, and it one of the taller of the climbing roses.
I’ll plant my Don Juan at the end of my porch, and I’ll train it to grow up and around the porch. I’ll have a porch swing there, and I plan to spend a lot of time sitting there, simply thinking and/or regrouping.
I have a large backyard, but a huge black walnut tree lives back there, and roses and black walnut trees do not get along. For that reason, my rose garden will be in my front yard, I’ll place a picket fence with trellises that surround my front porch, and I’ll allow the climbing roses to make that space a secret garden, too.
Although Zephirine Drouhin has hardly any fragrance, I love the fact that she has very few thorns. I’ll plant Zephirine in the spots where peoples’ hands might touch her, I love to plant Zephirine with blue Clematis vines. Clematis vines do not have thorns at all. Zephirine Drouhin grows to be about 15′ – 20′ tall.
Climbing Iceberg is similar to Zephirine Drouhin, but it has more thorns. Yet, its thorniness is nowhere near that of some of the other roses.
I like to plant Iceberg and Zephirine close together.
Westerland Rose does not have the same growth habit as either Climbing Iceberg or Zepherine Drouhin. While Zepherine grows to a height of 15′ to 20′ and while Climbing Iceberg grows to a height of about 15′, the Westerland Rose only grows to a heigh of about 8′. It is important to note that Westerland has vicious thorns, however. I’ll plant the little beauties along short walls–in spots where, after I plant them, I won’t need to get too close afterward. Yet, because the rose is highly fragrant, I do want to plant them within smelling distance of a place that I’ll enjoy sitting. Westerland has a spicy fragrance to it.\
Louise Odier has a growth habit similar to that of Westerland, and she is also very thorny, but her fragrance is magnificent.
Climbing Blaze Rose
Climbing Golden Showers Rose
This year, I’ll 3 each of both Climbing Blaze and Climbing Golden Showers. I’ll plant them near each other all around my house.