Shade Tolerant Roses

Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 fSeptember 17, 2013


I have considered purchasing Duchesse de Brabant but HMF lists it as being shade tolerant and growing to 8' x 3'.

Based upon your experience, is shade tolerant "also" code for the rose does not like a lot of heat?

Those of you gardening where there is a long growing season, is 8' x 3' really accurate in terms of its mature size.

I am searching to replace an America climber that is succumbing to MRV or it just cannot take the full sun here. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
I hope to find some shade of pink, but not a very soft pink because it will essentially be cream or white for most of the year. The rose is in a focal point area with other roses so a good repeat bloom is necessary.


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jerijen(Zone 10)

Hi Lynn -- I would think that just about every rose would be "shade-tolerant" in LV. Or die.

I guess there may be an 8-ft.-tall 'Duchess de Brabant,' but I have never encountered it. I've honestly never seen one much over 3.5- to 4-ft. Many are smaller. Below, see a very old one in a cemetery. (Dog for scale. )

In no way could it fill the job of a Climber,


    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 4:21PM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f

Thanks Jeri,

The doggie is a great point of reference.

DdB It is a gorgeous rose bush, but like you wrote, definitely not anywhere near 8 ft. in height. My search continues...

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 6:15PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

:-) She wasn't a real big doggie, either. Perhaps 21 inches at the top of the shoulder.


    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 6:29PM
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Here in Texas where the growing season is long, Duchesse can get as big as 8 feet easily.

I posted pics of a mature DdB rose in the thread Earth-kind Roses Trial Garden.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 6:57PM
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ingrid_vc(Z10 SoCal)

Two specimens of Duchesse de Brabant, a rose I love, succumbed in their spot of all-day sun. I would think a few hours of morning sun and then shade the rest of the day would be its cup of tea. Mine never got old enough to reach 8 feet, and for that matter none of my mature teas are even close to that. I suspect that hot AND dry heat inhibits them from growing into monsters.

I've gardened in inland southern California for a long time and never have I seen a summer like this. The native vegetation is more stressed than I've ever seen it and my garden, which is watered every day, is to me a scene of despair. I have six roses that were ordered some time ago and never would have done that had I known what the situation would be. One of my crape myrtles is almost completely dried up in spite of the watering. I don't know if much of anything will grow here in a few years. I really feel no hope for the future with climate change having arrived unless drastic changes are made at a government level, but that's being blocked successfully by those who deny that it's even happening.

I hope I can keep a few roses alive in the coolest areas of the garden. The changes I see even from day to day are without precedent. If we have another drought winter here I can't imagine what will happen.


    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 7:19PM
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Oh that's beautiful Jeri. The very image of Victorian grace and tenderness. The sweet pup, the graceful rose and the quiet cemetary monuments. * sigh*

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 7:56PM
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Ingrid don't lose hope. The winter will give them a break and they can regain vitality and grow more roots. I'm guessing, the weather will swing and we get our rain back from up north.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 8:00PM
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Mrs. B.R. Cant' is a medium-pink Old Garden Tea that;
-grows to be c. 8 feet tall.
- holds its pink color in full sun better than Ducess de Brabant' in my garden.
- is one of the most vigorous Tea I've ever grown. (with Monsieur Tillier)

Mine tripled in height over the last 9 months. it can crisp a bit on the edges in hot full sun, so a bit of shade is good for it, in a hot climate.

-Here on gardenweb a few years back Mrs. B.R. Cant was voted "Most Favorite Tea rose".
Mrs. B.R Cant has arge pink, half globe flowers ( picture a globe sliced in half)
good scent, fast growing on its own roots for a Tea rose.

No other class of large flowered rose can beat Tea roses for their long season of bloom, with quick re-bloom. Most Tea roses here near San Francisco top out at c. 6-8 feet tall and bloom steadily from late February through early December, and are rarely out of bloom.

Many of the Old Garden Tea roses I've seen (c. 200 different cultivars) are partially shade tolerant in our latitude.

I think both ARE and Rogue sells Mrs. B.R Cant, I bought mine from a.r.e because they sell larger plants.

see photos at
good luck,

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 8:08PM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f


Jeri, you are in California? I know that roses will grow "non stop" in many areas there, versus a lot of Texas areas actually becoming much colder. I wonder if that DdB performs better when it has had a good winter chill?

Maybe Josh's 8a, versus 9b, or my 9a for that matter, makes a difference?

Unfortunately, I have no morning shade for it:(
I am going to get rid of America, and would actually prefer a climber in the spot, but was going to definitely make an exception for DdB. I have been searching for days and have yet to find anything for that space.

Ingrid, can your Belinda's Dream take afternoon heat? I am contemplating placement of the one I have slotted for a location other than replacing America Cl.


    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 8:22PM
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nanadollZ7 SWIdaho(Zone 7 Boise SW Idaho)

Ingrid, don't despair. Things will get better, I'm sure. Please consider a drip system. I know I've mentioned it before, but they are a lifesaver in a hot, dry climate. In nine years, I've never had a problem with mine, nor had to dig anything up. I couldn't garden without it. Meanwhile, may the rains come for your garden. They finally came for mine (not a lot, but everything counts). Diane

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 8:23PM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f

Nanadoll I definitely agree with you. One would be hard-pressed to find a home here with plants that are not watered via a drip system and timer. The system is more water efficient; especially for dry drought ridden areas, and watering cycles etc. are easily adjusted. While I have had roses that may not like the heat, and put out small blooms etc., I have never lost a rose as a result of the heat. The roses always bounce back in September.

Ingrid hopefully your roses will bounce back soon.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 8:37PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

Yes. I am in CA. And yes, winter chill helps most roses grow better. In my location, we have none.

But Las Vegas has its own share of challenges. Most people I've known who lived there, and were "serious" about roses, made shade structures for them.


    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 8:44PM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f

Hi Jeri,

If winter chill is what DdB needs, I do not get enough of it either; I am in 9a...

All areas seem to have their challenges, it is one thing or another, and Las Vegas is not exempt.

I have been growing roses here for about 13 years and have yet to provide any shade for a rose other than the canopy of a palm tree; which I guess qualifies as shading:) I have never been a competitive rose grower, but at one point grew about 150 roses here; no special structures required, especially for about 6-8 weeks out of the year.

Our weather does vary, with the East side of town, and even the more established communities just west of the strip being a significantly hotter part of the valley.

In the areas where I have resided, moving closer to the Red Rock Canyon area and other mountains, we have had snow the better part of the 13 years that I have been residing here. It is always great to awaken and see snow fall or some years what looks like a winter wonderland in my yard and neighborhood; especially being a former So. California beach dweller and native. The East side of town and areas just West of the strip received no snow whatsoever, and generally do not. I wonder if the folks you know are gardening on the other end of town, or for competitive reasons, as it has never been that "serious" for me...but I have and continue to have a yard filled with healthy beautiful roses, as that, and gardening, are among the things that bring me joy.


    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 9:17PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

Lynn -- Most of the people I've known in LV have been in the "hotter" areas -- not up near the hills. And yes -- most of them have provided shade for roses.

As for DdB -- No. I do not think she specifically requires winter chill. Many roses, however, DO -- and in my specific area, that ain't happenin'.

I repeat that I've never seen an 8-ft-tall Duchess de Brabant -- but then, many things grow bigger, in TX. :-)


    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 10:42PM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f


Thank you for the suggestion! I had forgotten about Mrs. B.R. Cant, and it did not come up when I searched for roses on HMF fitting my criteria. There was likely something I inadvertently selected that eliminated it from the results.


    Bookmark   September 17, 2013 at 10:45PM
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DdB (from Chamblees) hit 6 or 7' or so by her third year here and was much wider than that, despite being pruned back a few feet every year. Very large, yes, but not like a climber -- more like "big mountain of a bush". On the other hand, she didn't respond badly to the pruning I did, so training as such may be possible. I do suspect that the 8' x 3' size given in HMF is a typo.

She was a good, beautiful bloomer, but was very prone to PM which, in fact, disfigured her leaves badly here pretty much all the time and never got better, so now regretfully gone.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 9:24AM
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rinaldo(z7b AR)

Have you considered Georgetown Tea or Madame Lombard? I actually had to take out GT because it became impossibly large for where I had put it. (I want to plant another, but I continue to search for a suitable site.) My Georgetown Tea was seven foot tall and six foot wide when I took it out. It was about ten years old.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 10:58AM
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cemeteryrose(USDA 9/Sunset 14)

In the Sacramento cemetery, also zone 9a, DbB gets to about 5-6 feet wide and tall. PM can be an issue but not so bad that I wouldn't grow it (I have it at home, too). Our dry summer heat gets rid of PM although spring and fall can be an issue. We grow it in full sun and varying amounts of shade. Its close relative/sport, Mme Joseph Shwartz, tolerates even more shade. I would not, however, try to grow them as a climber. There is a climbing version in Australia that I'd love to have. Those beautiful,fragrant flowers hanging down from overhead - heaven!

We have a climbing White Maman Cochet on the mausoleum in the rose garden that is in all-day full sun with some reflected heat from the granite, and it does fine. Other Cochet roses that we grow get some shade and do fine, so it's a versatile plant.. Great repeat, very vigorous. I remember Sherry enjoying and being a bit overwhelmed by her climbing White Maman Cochet so you'd need some room.

There are a few other climbing teas. We grow Dr. Rouges on the cemetery fence - again, full sun, and it gets the brunt of winter's north winds. It's taken a while to extablish but is doing great now. Flowers are salmon-pink.

We are Sunset Zone 14 so have some cooler weather at night because of marine influence, but usually have several weeks above 100 degrees. It's never occurred to me that Teas would need shade in our climate but can't speak for Las Vegas.

I've lost track of the point of this thread - do you want a shade tolerant rose for that site, and if so, how many hours of sun a day does it get?

I looked up Las Vegas in Sunset Western Garden book and think that you get cold enough to provide winter chill for roses that benefit from it. I don't think that Teas need it, however - roses with European ancestry are the ones that bloom better where it's cold in the winter, but perform fairly well in Sacramento. Roses with predominately Asian background (Teas and Chinas) are more winter-tender but tend to thrive in summer heat.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 11:00AM
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rinaldo(z7b AR)

Speaking of shade and roses, you know the biggest problem I have in our hot summer climate with roses in the shade isn't bloom but insects. If a rose is in even part shade, the likelihood of its becoming some bugs lunch increases exponentially.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 11:00AM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f

Hi Anita,

Actually the thread has two issues. I had been searching for a rose to take America CL.'S place in a raised planter that has a 9-10 foot wall behind it. I had looked at roses that were described as shade tolerant and wondered if I should avoid them for this spot as the roses there must be able to survive 7 hours of late morning thru early evening sun during July and half of August. My Ambivalence is due to concern that shade tolerant is inversely code for heat intolerant. My garden gets plagued by aphids when it is cooler and spider mites when it is hot. I think the aridness and temperatures ward off fungal disease as black spot, PM, and other things are virtually non existent for all intents and purposes.

We average about 70 days of temperatures in the 100+ range. I have seen many beautiful tea roses but have been concerned that they would be too delicate for the summer here. I know that Sacramento becomes pretty toasty during the summer too, which gives me more reason to possibly strongly consider tea roses.

Btw, thank you for the info.

Part two is my search for a pink climber. Mrs. B.R. Cant is the forerunner but unavailable right now, so my search continues.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 2:55PM
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I would like to mention a small rose that has done well in just a few hours of light and still bloomed continuously. Gourmet Popcorn looks very nice and mixes well with the smaller Polyanthas but grows in a shadier position and the little sprays of white sparkle in the shade. This rose seems easy to grow. It has done well wherever I have planted it.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2013 at 11:31AM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f


Thank you for the suggestions. The Maman Cochet I believe will be too short for the area; the wall is about 10ft. I am really leaning towards climbers as the entire span of the back wall has climbing roses; this one will be near the center of it all. My front runners are Mrs. B.R. Cant and a modern climber Aloha.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2013 at 3:20PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

One thing you might want to take into consideration is how much heat is reflected off those block walls.

We have a similar site here. Roses planted at the foot of our 12-ft-tall retaining wall have been fried. The wall faces SOUTH, and despite the fact that our climate is far cooler than yours, there's enough heat reflected from that surface to repeatedly burn canes.

We've found that the only roses to succeed there are varieties which have little-or-no bare cane surface. Grandmother's Hat makes it there, growing maybe 7 ft. tall, if not pruned. But we lost "Pilarcitos," a found Noisette of climbing habit -- among other victims.

We have also moderated the heat some, by putting latticework panels a few inches from the wall, behind the roses.

Here are plants of 'Tina Marie,' a blush-white sport of "Grandmothers Hat", in front of the fearsome wall.


    Bookmark   September 20, 2013 at 8:35PM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f

Hi Jerijen,

Tina Marie is a beautiful rose!

The climbers on the wall rest in front of large wooden trellises that are about 6" or so away from the wall at the bottom and attached to the block wall. The planter backs up to a northern wall that receives sun during most of the day. There are Queen Palms and a citrus tree in the planter that filter the sun at different times throughout the day.

I had still planned to gift the Grandmother's Hat to my sister in law, but every time I see it, and now the sport, EVS for her is looking better and better.

    Bookmark   September 21, 2013 at 12:28AM
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titian1 10b

If you're still looking, I have a Ms Tillier doing well under a Jacaranda, and even further under its shade is Marie van Houtte, which amazes me in her growth and blooms in such a spot. They are both in a terrace above the tree, so there isn't that much root competition, but plenty of shade in summer. Shady Lady and rugosa Scabrosa are also in shade and doing well.

    Bookmark   October 26, 2013 at 2:46AM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f

Hi Titian1,

I gave America a reprieve and am uprooting its neighbor Joseph's Coat. I am placing my one and only vintage rose Belle de Vichyssoise in its place. If America does not perk up in the next month, it will be sp'd and the search will begin again. Thank you for the suggestion as it will be on the list if it comes to a demise for Climbing America.


This post was edited by desertgarden561 on Sat, Oct 26, 13 at 15:05

    Bookmark   October 26, 2013 at 12:28PM
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