Rose arrangement in new garden question

kingcobbtx9bApril 25, 2014

OK, so I am about to dig up my 50 roses and move them to the new house. Here will be my question:

Currently I had largely planted the roses as I acquired them, I intend to put more thought into the planting this time. So my roses run the gamut of white to purple/dark lavender with everything between as well as tea roses, grandifloras, species roses, floribundas hybrid teas, and English roses.

Do people tend to plant similar colors together or mix and match and is there any real guide to which rose type to plant together?

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9A Tx is my zone
Don't know why I put 7A.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 10:33PM
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ingrid_vc(Z10 SoCal)

I know this seems pretty obvious, but you'll want to plant the very large roses more toward the back and the smaller ones near the front, or have them separated from each other in some fashion.

Some people like to mix all different colors together but I've found that the garden seems much more harmonious if cool colors are kept apart from warm colors. In other words, an orange rose near a lavender one won't give the best look. I stay away from deep yellows, oranges and reds altogether, and all colors other than that seem to go together quite well. Pale yellow will work too in a cool color scheme, and so will soft apricot. If you like hot colors, I'd keep them in a separate area. Companion plants really help to make a rose garden look soft and natural, and will keep the roses healthier by separating them from each other with irises, day lilies, penstemons and other plants that you might prefer.


    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 1:32AM
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sammy zone 7 Tulsa

I often put the same roses together. I have many beds with multiple roses, and I think they will bloom at exactly the same time, and give a larger "glow" when they are blooming.

I plant Cramoisi Superieur in specific spots in my garden - as well as Maggie, and maybe a few other reds. My yellows usually die, and I do not have many orange. So in most of the beds, I do not pay a lot of attention to color, and try to adjust the size so that large ones do not over shadow the smaller ones.

I also have discovered that many perennials and annuals, tend to make the roses stand out more. I have reduced my roses from a high of 276 to about 130 or 140. To me they look better now. Before I began to think they looked like a rose nursery rather than a garden.


    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 5:43AM
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dublinbay z6 (KS)

One technique I sometimes use to kinda tie the color scheme together is take several of the same rose (or it could be several of the same color) and space them out periodically around the bed or down the garden strip. That way, the eye follows along kind of rhythmically. I do that with my 3 red Eutins (floribundas) supplemented by some other reds (Braveheart shrub, Chrysler Imperial HT, etc.)--creates periodic splotches of vivid color. Inbetween (and in front and in back of) the reds I insert whites or bright yellows or a few lighter pinks--depends on how hot or cool I want the overall effect to be--but the red roses form kind of the permanent backbone of that design.

On the other hand, a single bed of one color--all reds or all pinks for instance--has its own appeal. It can be all the same rose for big visual appeal--or different roses of the same shade--for instance, all my reds in one bed.
The color is consistent, but the plants vary in type (shrubs, HTs, floribundas, climbers) and in heights and shapes and leaf textures and even types of blooms.

I remember one forum member setting up a bed of soft colors starting with the more lavender shades at one end and gradually working through soft pinks to soft yellows to soft whites. Kind of a soft rainbow effect.

I have what I call my soft lemonade corner (semi-circle)--bunch of pale pinks, pale yellows blushed pink on the edges, lightly blushed whites all mixed together. It's yummy.

The back garden looked a bit bland unless you were up close--so I stuck a burgundy Munstead Wood near the yellow/gold/apricot Molineux already there--that created some drama readily apparent across the yard.

What I'm saying is all sorts of combinations and patterns can be created with color and size and shape. Either set up the "bones" with some repeat colors and fill in, or work in smaller spaces for special effects you like.

What you like--that is the key. If you like oranges, go for a hot tropical colored bed, for instance. Stand back and just view the overall color effect. Does an area need some punch--stick in a bright intense color. Or is it getting too bright and chaotic--stick in some more neutral whites or beiges or pale yellows or reduce the chaos by introducing more of one of the colors already there.

I also intermix lots of perennials and bulbs and corms into my rose beds. When I needed to tone down the bright reds in that one bed, I planted white hardy geraniums periodically at the feet of some of the roses--helped tie together the color scheme also. I insert a clump of iris periodically (usually more towards the rear) just because those spears of green look wonderful next to a rose (and irises are beautiful in and of themselves). Some lower-growing salvia occasionally in front of the roses look really nice. (and so forth!)

Hope that gives you some ideas. I'm sure there are many other ways of designing rose beds also.


    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 7:47AM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f


You have great examples from Ingrid and Kate relative to color theory and placement.

Ingrid, DublinBay, Daisyincrete, Hoovb, lesmc, and patbama all have amazing gardens. These gardens are the ones I can think of off the top of my head. They all have been nice enough to share images of their gardens at different points on the forum boards. You may want to conduct a search and take a peek. They can provide inspiration and a visual of their gardens may help you with the arrangement of not just colors, but companion plants.


This post was edited by desertgarden561 on Sat, Apr 26, 14 at 14:21

    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 9:10AM
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Thanks for the tips. Yeah I got the big in back little in front, it was more a question of color arrangement I struggle with. I like to underplant with a variety of plants, but specifically like using lavenders.

Here is the list of all my roses:
2 Graham Thomas
1 Heritage
1 Falstaff
1 Scepter D'Isle
1 Lady of Shallot
1 Princess Anne
1 Abraham Darby
Non Austins:
2 Belinda's Dreams
Don Juan
Golden Showers
In the Mood
Lady Hillingdon
Lady Hillingdon Cl
Ducher Rose
Easy Living
Easy going
Chrysler Imperial
Stainless Steel
Nacodoches Rose(Sorry Texas A&M I refuse to call it Grandma's Yellow)
Grande Dame
Love Song
Tahitian Sunset
Julia Child
Memorial Day
China Doll
Lasting Love
Ebb Tide
Twilight Zone
Yellow Lady Banks
America Cl
Rosarium Uetersen
Sexy Rexy
Mr. Lincoln
Zepherin Druhin
5 or 6 unknown roses.

I believe that is all of them.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 11:16AM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

I tend to group differently

The front yard street side has a section that is mostly pinks and pink tones and one that mom can see from the dining room window that is purples and whites with yellow and purple companion plants. There are a couple that I plan on moving in the fall because they are wrong for the bed. Almost all of these are plants I received from friends or neighbors so I think of them every time I walk thru the garden.

In the mauve garden I have...mauves. Moms favorite color. I would like to keep this bed more mauve, shades of purples and white. But Don Juan was there first so he is my pop of color. Many of these are also from friends.

I put the Austins together, I do wish I had swapped Crocus and Bishops castle so the warm Austins would be together and the cool ones together.

In the Veggie Lower Garden I have the Antiques and the rest of the collection-still working on those

    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 12:11PM
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