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Relandscaping - Need help with rose selection in Zone 5 garden

10 years ago

I've grappled with a number of knock outs, as well as some very thorny climbers along my garage wall, for the past 10 years. I'm tired of getting bloody pruning them, but they've done so well I haven't had the heart to yank them out. My roses have no scent either (another strike). Last year we relandscaped and I planted perennials and hydrangea. This year I want to start tackling rose replacements, but only with thornless or near thornless varieties. I need help with selections that do well in a Zone 5 garden. Since I have this chance to start over, I really want to make good decisions about my selections because I know I won't do it again. Please, please help!!!

Here are my must have qualifiers (in order of importance):
Zone 5 hardy
Only thornless or near thornless varieties
Continual bloom or excellent rebloom all season long - No one & done bloomers!
Fairly disease resistant (I will feed and deadhead, but won't spray otherwise)

These are my preferences, but are not deal breakers:
Scent (Any scent at all would improve what I have now.)
Apricot/salmon, cerise/pinks/blushes, yellow or purples, maybe red.
Full blooms rather than single petal blooms
Thick foliage, glossy if possible

Here are the locations I want to plant with thornless roses:
1. Climber for 8 ft trellis on chimney wall w/ 6 hours sun mid morning to afternoon. My top choices here would be Abraham Darby, Cornelia, or Golden Showers. AD is listed as thornless (or almost) at HMF, but I've seen photos that look pretty thorny. Would you consider him almost thornless? Others to consider?

2. Climbers for both sides of arbor - must be shade tolerant. (Morning sun and late day sun only). Also, moss likes to grow in this area. Will the soil carry too much moisture for roses? Here I was thinking Zephirine Drouhin or Cornelia.

3. Bushes for a thornless rose hedge 20 ft wide - full sun (10+ hrs) with unshaded western exposure. This will be below windows against a wall of my home so height will need to be maintained at 4 feet or less. My preference here is Heritage but I'm concerned about heat tolerance and rebloom capacity in this very hot spot. Also thought about Reines des Violettes, but have read mixed reports on whether it is a one/done bloomer or a repeat bloomer. Will it rebloom in Z5? Iceberg sounds like it might do well as a hedge too, but I was hoping for a color other than white since I already have a lot of white hydrangea in the yard. Other suggestions for thornless, reblooming hedge roses?

4. I also need a short thornless climber against a patio railing. Gets lots of full sun but only has about a 4Hx4W fence railing to grow on. Suggestions?

5. One large bush to block view of neighbor's unsightly yard. 5-6 hrs sun. Must bloom and grow vigorously and have dense foliage as well as thornless nature. Space to fill is 6-8 ft wide x 6-8 ft tall. Should I give up on a rose bush here and just go with a reblooming lilac? Suggestions?

6. I also have 6 other spots for varied individual thornless bushes which I will maintain at about a 2-3ft x 2-3ft max size. In these locations my main goal is to get thornless continual bloom machines that have great color and scent that will perfume two patio areas. All spots get 5-6 hours of sun at various times in the day. A couple will be planted under tree canopies but still get adequate light. I've been looking at Marie Daly, Valentine, pink Gruss, Lynnie, Golden Celebration (I've seen this listed as thornless. But is it?). Your thoughts on these or others?

Any help you guys can give me would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!

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