When growing roses, knowing the ideal climate for roses is important to helping your plants thrive. Roses (Rosa spp.) come in over 150 subspecies plus thousands of hybrid options, meaning the climate requirements can vary significantly depending on which one you choose. Roses typically grow in warm climates and flower in the summer months. However, some roses can grow in the hot tropical climate found in Florida, while others can grow in hardiness zones as low as 2, which have winter temperatures that drop as low as -50 degrees Fahrenheit.
Roses can grow in a variety of climates depending on the type of rose you choose. Most roses prefer warm climates, but others can handle tropical environments or areas that have cold, harsh winters.
Tropical Climate Roses
The south of Florida has a tropical climate, enjoying long, hot humid summers. A number of rose species grow well in this climate and are able to tolerate periods of drought that other roses don't tolerate. Most of the roses that grow well in this climate originated in China and came to the United States via Europe.
The most common Chinese rose grown in the hot, dry conditions prevailing in south and central Florida is 'Old Blush,' otherwise known as 'Parson's Pink China.' Another variety of roses that flourish in hot, dry climates are Noisettes, named after the Charleston nursery owner Philip Noisette, who first cultivated these roses from seeds, and Bermuda roses, which come from the Atlantic island of Bermuda.
Wind and Low Humidity
The climate of Colorado is dry, particularly in the west of the state. Winters are dry and freezing, with much of Colorado rated as hardiness zones 4 or 5. This means that winter temperatures can get as low as -30 degrees Fahrenheit. Springtime can be windy.
Some climbing roses grow well in this climate. Although you should plant them where they won't be fully exposed to the wind, whenever possible, many climbing roses will still grow and flower in those conditions. A strong support trellis and some protection from the wind can improve their growth. The roses that grow best in the Colorado climate are Old Garden Roses and Canadian Explorer roses.
While roses don't bloom in winter, they're perennial flowering shrubs that must survive the winter months so that they can bloom again the following year. Harsh winter frosts will kill most rose varieties, but some can withstand winters in hardiness zones as low as zone 2, where winter temperatures can get as low as -45 degrees Fahrenheit. Roses that are able to survive in zone 2 include 'Blanc Double de Courbert,' which produces white double-flowers, 'Assinboine,' which produces medium-sized red blooms, and 'Dart's Dash,' a rose producing purple and red double-flowering blooms.
Temperate climates, such as those found in England and much of the northern Mediterranean, and those found in the maritime parts of northern California and southern Oregon, are good for growing most rose species. Most of the modern roses found around the world originate from breeding done in continental Europe, England and the northern Mediterranean, using specimens imported from Asia, and especially from China. Most English and European garden roses, cultivated for temperate climate growth, don't do well in climates where the winters are harsh.
Peter Lancett has been writing professionally for over 10 years. He has five novels and a series of award-winning illustrated books currently distributed internationally. Lancett writes for film and television alongside his work writing instructional articles online. He has traveled extensively and has lived in England and New Zealand.