Good question. They both grow over walls and structures and have rose like flowers, don’t they? So what are the differences between a rambling rose and a climbing rose?
|Rambling rose Albertine|
Roses include some species that are naturally climbers, called rambling roses or ramblers. The flowers are often small and scented, and carried in large trusses. However, they only flower once per season. Flowers are borne on second year wood. Pruning would therefore be only to shape, not to stimulate flowers.
Rambling roses can grow up to 12m in height, having a lax habit with numerous flexible canes that can be trained to fit a structure or left naturally. They are therefore excellent plants for covering pergolas and arch ways and climbing into trees.
|Climbing rose Iceberg|
Climbing roses are garden roses which have been developed or bred to produce long shoots. The flowers are larger than in ramblers and are carried in less crowded clusters. They are repeat flowering, usually from June to October. Flowers are borne on the new seasons growth and climbers therefore require pruning to back to a main frame of branches.
Many require pruning to keep them flowering and are often awkward in habit. They are not as tall as ramblers, growing to 5m high, but are sturdier and more upright. They usually have to be tied to stay into position but are excellent growing up pillars or wall where they can be easily reached for pruning.
Rambling rose species include Rosa filipes 'Kiftsgate' which can reach 12m in height.
Climbing roses include Rosa 'Madame Alfred Carriere' and Rosa 'Zepphyrine Drouhin' which will grow on north facing walls.
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