Can Climbing Roses Grow in Shade? Yes, Grow These Two!

Not all areas of your garden are necessarily sunny, you probably still want to see blooms in the shaded areas. Roses might be an option, but can climbing roses grow in shade?

So I’m tackling can climbing roses grow in shade in this article. Let’s start with a quick answer then we’ll dive into some details…

Yes, but height and blooms may not be as plentiful. In general, most roses prefer full sun, but some varieties can thrive in partial shade as long as they’re looked after. Ideally, for most climbers to reach their full potential, an area with at least 6 hours of direct sunlight a day is needed.

So now let’s look at the aspects of growing climbing roses in shade.

me and my climbing rose
I love climbing roses

Can climbing roses grow in shade?

In order for climbing roses to grow in shade, there are things that need to be taken into consideration.

How much shade? If the area is shady but still receives some direct sunlight, then climbing roses can survive and even thrive in such an environment.

However, if the area gets no direct sun, then it’s best to avoid planting most varieties of climbing rose in that spot as they may struggle to produce blooms.

If you want to widen your search for a rose in a shaded area, then also look at rambling roses. To know the differences see my article on rambling rose vs climbing rose here.

Pro Tip:

Just because it might be shaded on the ground, remember that climbing roses can grow up to 14 feet tall. So if there is sunlight available higher up then that can help them further down the line, provided they can tolerate shade until growing to that point.

can climbing roses grow in shade
a climbing rose against a wall

How much sun does a climbing rose need?

Climbing roses need at least 6 hours of direct sunlight each day in order to thrive. If they receive less than this, then they may not bloom or their blooms will be sparse.

Pro Tip:

It depends on your situation, but rambling roses tend to have more varieties that are shade tolerant than climbing roses. But their spread can be wider. So consider these.

rambling rose vs climbing rose
rambling rose

So can you grow climbing roses in partial shade?

Climbing roses can tolerate some shade, but they will do best in full sun.

If you’re looking for the very best results, try to find a spot that gets at least 6 hours of direct sunlight each day.

If this isn’t possible, then you can look at climbing plants that are suited to shade, which I’ll get into shortly, or you could look for the types of climbing plants that are better suited to shadier areas. These include clematis, wisteria, and honeysuckle.

When choosing the right climbing rose for your shaded area, look for varieties that are known to be more tolerant of shade. These include ‘New Dawn’, ‘Sombreuil’ and ‘Cecile Brunner’. Plant in well-draining soil and apply a root-stimulating fertilizer in the spring and summer.

Water regularly, here’s my general guide on when to water roses, and another guide particularly for watering roses in hot weather or dry spells to keep the soil moist.

climbing rose
climbing rose

Are there any climbing roses suited for shady areas?

Fortunately, yes! There are certain varieties of climbing roses that can survive and even thrive in shaded conditions. The two I’ve outlined below can grow to full height and to full spread.

Best climbing roses for shady areas

Here are a couple of climbing roses you might want to try which work really well with shaded areas and will grow well.

Zephirine Drouhin Climbing Rose

zephirine climbing rose

One of the best climbing roses for shaded areas is the “Zephirine Drouhin Climbing Rose“.

This rose is great for zones 5 to 9 so it’s an all-around climbing rose.

It’s great to train around the trellis or over your porch entrance.

As long as you plant it in well-drained soil it should grow to a mature height of 8 – 10 feet and a mature spread of around 4 – 6 feet.

Blaze Improved Climbing Rose

blaze improved climbing rose

Another climbing rose variety that’s suitable for shady spots is the “Blaze Improved Climbing Rose.”

Blaze improved is great for growing zones 6 to 9.

What also makes them great is they can grow to a height of 12 – 14 feet.

And with a four-foot spread, it’s something that you can be proud of growing in an otherwise (perhaps) unused area of the garden.

Of course, what you don’t necessarily want is for the climbing rose to then spread into the sunny areas of the garden. Of course, pruning helps here, but there’s more…

How much space do climbing roses need?

climbing rose

When planting climbing roses, it’s best to give them plenty of room for their roots, as well as for the canes and branches.

At a minimum, you will need somewhere that gives them a spread of at least 4 feet.

That allows the roots plenty of room to grow, which ensures healthy growth in the long run.

As you can see from the two best climbing roses to grow in the shade that

I’ve outlined above, there is a general area of 4 feet in spread, that climbing roses will want to use. This is helped with training the canes and pruning.

Pruning is important, as it helps the climbing rose to stay healthy and to flower better.

Prune in the winter, and remove any dead twigs, as well as old wood. This encourages a stronger growth habit and helps to keep the climbing rose from becoming overgrown.

Pro Tip:

Keep in mind that what you don’t necessarily want is for climbing roses to grow and then cast too much shade on other areas of the garden. Generally, climbing roses will remain quite sparse when they get higher up, but it’s worth keeping this in mind.

Can climbing roses grow in shade ~ More rose help 🌹

I hope this has provided some confidence that there are climbing roses you can grow in shaded areas. There’s a rose for just about any area of your garden, and they’re getting easier to maintain too.

Be sure to check out my other articles and have great fun growing roses!

michael - rosehow

Hi, I’m Michael. My passion for roses was sparked a few years ago after visiting a dedicated community rose garden. So represents my take, my learnings, and my help for anyone looking to grow, be proud of, and harvest roses.