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Frosty winters put roses to the test. Although the noble flowering shrubs are basically hardy, severe frost causes massive damage to many roses north of the Alps. Picturesque splendor of flowers and favorite type of rose should therefore not be the only criteria when purchasing. Forward-looking rose gardeners also look at the degree of frost tolerance. This selection introduces you to 15 varieties of beautiful roses that can withstand even the frost of the century without damage.

Hardy roses

There are many options when it comes to choosing roses. If the roses are to tolerate a lot of frost, the choice is more difficult. Below we present 15 hardy roses.

One-time flowering tops repeat-flowering

In terms of winter hardiness, roses that bloom more often are at a disadvantage. Breeders of modern rose varieties, however, give preference to reblooming, furious blooms. Such beauty comes at a price, as multi-flowering varieties tolerate less frost than roses with a single flowering season. However, if the temperatures fall below - 23 °C, rose beauties that bloom more often have nothing to oppose and freeze back, in the worst case down to the ground.

Rose varieties that bloom once only do not give up even under the influence of Siberian conditions, because they tolerate temperatures well below -30 °C without damage. In this selection of really hardy roses, you will look in vain for modern, frequently flowering rose bushes. However, winter survivors compensate for the apparent disadvantage of a once-a-year flowering period with other advantages. Because premium varieties fill the summer garden with a seductive rose scent, wear lavish rosehip decorations in autumn, but do not shy away from partially shaded locations and are reliably resistant to rose diseases.

tip: Two measures optimize the frost tolerance of your roses in the bed. Be sure to plant a rose so deep that the grafting point is a good two inches below the surface of the earth. Each late fall, pile up the shoot base six to eight inches high with compost. Cover shoots protruding from the hill with needle brushwood.

Bed and shrub roses

Damask rose 'Madame Hardy' (Rosa damascena)

Damask roses have a reputation for being particularly hardy. Because freezing cold down to -34 °C does not throw these roses out of floral balance. The breathtaking variety 'Madame Hardy' combines reliable frost resistance with a flood of white, bulging rose blossoms with a beguiling fragrance. The multiple award-winning shrub rose undoubtedly lives up to its reputation as one of the most beautiful white rose varieties.

  • Growth height: 180 to 200 cm
  • Flowering period: June and July

Park rose 'Hansa' (Rosa rugosa)

If park roses score with solid winter hardiness, at least one wild rose is one of the parents. An example is the magnificent variety called 'Hansa'. At the beginning of the 20th century, the two rose breeders, Schaum & van Tol, were striving for a new rose that would bloom profusely with full, fragrant flowers, would be suitable for hedging and yet be hardy. To this day, the successful result is an integral part of the offer in every well-stocked tree nursery.

  • Growth height: 150 to 200 cm
  • Flowering time: June to August/September

Provins Rose 'Complicata' (Rosa gallica)

A robust wild rose was the inspiration for the breeding of 'Complicata'. Although the name of the variety suggests otherwise, the care of this bed rose proves to be completely uncomplicated. Because the wild rose-like, wonderfully fragrant flowers are presented by the vigorous gem without the time-consuming work of the rose gardener. The basis of its frugal undemanding is the ability of a Provins rose to bravely withstand frost down to -34 °C.

  • Growth height: 150 to 250 cm
  • Flowering time: June

Shrub rose 'Felicité Parmentier' (Rosa alba)

Lush, double, cream-colored flowers combine the nostalgic-looking premium rose with unbeatable winter hardiness. Experts certify that the legendary cultivar can withstand frosts down to -34.4 °C without grumbling. The picturesque bed and shrub rose does not need special winter protection. This makes 'Felicité Parmentier' one of the recommended roses for gardens with climatic conditions in winter hardiness zone Z4.

  • Growth height: 100 to 150 cm
  • Flowering period: June and July

rambler roses

'Goldfinch' (Rosa helenae)

Semi-double, buttery yellow flowers that fade to creamy white are the hallmark of this climber. It effortlessly conquers airy treetops and high facades, only to transform them into a summer fairy tale of blossoms. The floral jewel amazes a second time when hordes of orange-colored rose hips compete with the sun in autumn. The noble rose variety is proven to be hardy and endures frosts well below -30 °C without complaint.

  • Growth height: 300 to 500 cm
  • Flowering period: June and July

'Lykkefund' (Rosa helenae)

From the far north, this rambler rose found its way into the gardens and parks of Central Europe. With its almost thornless tendrils, it greens the crowns of mighty trees, meter-high facades and stable rose arches. Creamy white, semi-double flowers gather to form an exuberant sea of blossoms, which are staged anew every early summer. 'Lykkefund' is used to grief when it comes to frost, as winter temperatures plummet to a freezing -40°C in her native Denmark.

  • Growth height: 300 to 500 cm
  • Flowering period: June and July

Ännchen von Tharau (Rosa alba x Rosa arvensis hybrid)

Rose lovers have the ingenious rose breeder Rudolf Geschwind to thank for a variety of rambler varieties that thrive completely hardy. Ännchen von Tharau is the successful result of crossing Rosa alba and the wild rose Rosa arvensis. The latter has inherited reliable frost hardiness from the fairytale rambler rose. Up to 5 meters long, flexible tendrils with countless, loosely filled, white flowers conquer a stable climbing aid in no time at all and create an aura reminiscent of Sleeping Beauty's castle.

  • Growth height: 300 to 500 cm
  • Flowering period: June and July

notice: In the pot, every rose becomes a shaky candidate in winter, regardless of its certified winter hardiness. Behind the vessel wall, a root ball is vulnerable to temperatures below freezing. A warming winter coat made of bubble wrap and jute and an insulating wooden foot accompany a potted rose safely and healthily through the cold season.

Historical roses

Gallic rose, apothecary rose (Rosa gallica officinalis)

The presumably oldest rose variety in Europe has a colorful array of convincing attributes in its luggage. A lush pile of pink, semi-double flowers is accompanied by a seductive scent. The dark green, leathery foliage is said to be robust. The historic rose has lost none of its topicality, because even after a severe winter with severe frost, it puts on its picturesque blossoms again in early summer. However, if young shoots from the previous year freeze back a little, this is still no cause for concern. A strong pruning back into the healthy, older wood paves the way for this year's blossom symphony.

  • Growth height: 90 to 120 cm
  • Flowering period: June and July

Moss Rose 'Muscosa' (Rosa centifolia)

Since the end of the 18th century, the moss rose has allowed its followers to wallow in summery blossom dreams. Semi-double flowers up to 10 centimeters in diameter, accompanied by healthy, dark green pinnate leaves, are their most beautiful decoration. The moss-covered buds reliably appear every year, no matter how hard the winter may have been. The moss rose is one of the selected varieties that reliably tolerate winter-hard frost down to -30 °C.

  • Growth height: 120 to 150 cm
  • Flowering period: June and July

Park rose 'Maigold' (pink)

The historical park rose 'Maigold' is ideal for rose gardeners with a soft spot for an extra early flowering period. The successful premium variety intoxicates the senses with bright yellow, semi-double flowers when other flowering shrubs are only slowly waking up from hibernation. It is obvious that the historic beauty of the 1953 vintage is hardy and does not lose its will to live even in frost below -25 °C.

  • Growth height: 220 to 280 cm
  • Flowering period: May to October

wild roses

Burnet rose, dune rose (Rosa pimpinellifolia)

If you are looking for a well-fortified natural beauty, you will find it in this wild rose. Burnet roses thrive with distinctive spikes, up to 8 millimeters long. It's a good thing that the dune rose is completely hardy and easy to care for, which rarely requires gardening intervention.

  • Growth height: 100 to 150 cm
  • Flowering period: May and June

Pike rose (Rosa glauca)

The frost-hardy wild rose sets itself in scene with unusual color accents. Light pink bowl-shaped flowers contrast picturesquely with dainty leaves that shimmer in bluish-green to reddish-green in summer. After the flowering period, red, egg-shaped rose hips invite the birds in the garden to nibble.

  • Growth height: 150 to 250 cm
  • Flowering period: June and July

Dog Rose (Rosa canina)

If you come across an opulent rose bush while hiking, it is usually this wild rose. The dog rose enchants with countless, pink bowl flowers in the wild and in natural gardens. The wild beauty is completely hardy and survives even a severe winter in the mountains unscathed.

  • Growth height: 200 to 300 cm
  • Flowering period: June to September

creeping rose, field rose (Rosa arvensis)

We do not want to withhold from you a rare wild rose with ground cover qualities and convincing frost resistance in this selection. With creeping tendrils, Rosa arvensis lives up to its name. When growing freely, the field rose forms a decorative, hemispherical growth. Thanks to a growth rate of up to 40 centimeters a year, the creeping rose quickly covers desolate areas with a sea of white cup-shaped flowers. The rose variety does without winter protection as well as annual pruning measures.

  • Growth length: 50 to 200 cm
  • Flowering period: July and August

Cinnamon rose (Rosa majalis)

The distinctive cinnamon rose inspires with crimson pink flowers that gather in small clusters. Golden yellow stamens, a brown-red to purple wood color and dark red rose hips provide decorative color accents. As a native wild rose, the May rose is also completely hardy and does not need winter protection.

  • Growth height: 100 to 160 cm
  • Flowering period: May and June

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