Designing a green space with roses.

I’m in London and take note of roses in bloom. It’s difficult not to as they make no effort to hide their show-stopping beauty. To think that once upon a time I didn’t fancy them all that much is a mystery. Designing a green space with roses is not difficult considering their va va voom factor. But perhaps some design ideas might still be of assistance?

Roses on show- GardenRoomStyle
Roses in a border with and adorning a pergola.

I realise that I’m in deep waters here. Roses are the passion of many people. Expert people who knows far more than I do. So I suppose I just want to put some humble thoughts across. For example, the fact that roses love sun. Thus, before you think of how to apply them in your overall garden design, you will need to find the right location. Although there are some varieties that work in shade, to keep things simple, stick to a sunny spot.

Roses on show - GardenRoomStyle
A red rose of fullness.

Soil conditions are another factor. Make sure what kind suits your variety. In addition to sun, weather conditions such as wind needs to be taken into account. A tip here – if wind is an issue – Rosa rugosa is just what you are after. I have seen first hand over a number of years that this darling can handle tough wind exposure no worries at all.

Designing with roses - GardenRoomStyle
Rosa rugosa in a border and against a pergola. Pink climbing rose.

Next, a rather important step, consider colour. Personally I don’t mind mixing colours, but sometimes restraint works better than OTT. Harmony or contrast – take your pick. But contemplate the big garden design picture.

Designing with roses - GardenRoomStyle
Rosa rugosa and several other rose varieties.

Roses come in many heights. What are you after? A climber? Ground cover? A medium height variety? All of the above? Think again and make note. Furthermore, what about them petals? Some roses come in fairly simple blooms. Others have the most amazing fullness. Then there’s the scent, some people like a lot, others less.

Finally, I would like to offer a thought on roses in containers. Where they can fit extremely well. Or maybe not, if space is an issue. On a smallish terrace or balcony, the thorns can become troublesome getting stuck in clothing or hurt the skin. Perhaps best to pick another bloom?

Anyway, if you want EXPERTISE on roses check out David Austin’s 2022 Handbook of Roses!