You don’t have to have a big garden to grow climbing roses. There are plenty of small rose varieties bred for growing in patio pots, and these include a good selection of climbers. Some of them have diminutive leaves and flowers to suit their smaller stature, but others are full-sized in every way except their eventual height and spread. All are easy to grow on a short support in a pot.
Caption: 'Warm Welcome' is a great compact climbing-rose variety for pots
Buying bare-root roses between October and March costs less than getting a potted plant and there's no plastic or peat used in their production so it's better for the environment. During the growing season, buy a container-grown plant.
Caption: Use a big pot and Best Buy compost for your patio rose
Place the support over climbing varieties straight away, before the shoots start to grow, and secure it in place with hooks or pegs if needed.
Keep plants well watered after planting.
CARING FOR YOUR PLANTS
Water regularly during the growing season so the compost doesn’t dry out.
Train main stems by pulling them down at a low angle, winding them around the support and tying them in place. Tie in flowering shoots as they grow if needed.
Caption: Train the stems of climbers horizontally to encourage blooms lower down the plant
From the second year onwards, weed pots and top dress them each spring with more compost mixed with controlled-release fertiliser.
Prune in late winter, reducing flowered shoots by two thirds and removing any weak stems.
Tie in new growth if growing a climber. If older plants get too bushy, cut out older stems at ground level.
PESTS AND DISEASES
Blackspot is the most common fungal disease to attack roses. Growing resistant varieties can avoid problems, but if you see the dark spots on leaves, remove them promptly and get rid of all fallen leaves in winter. Start to spray plants with fungicide before the leaf buds break and at intervals afterwards to help
control bad infestations.
Caption: Blackspot affected leaves can be picked off
Powdery mildew, a white powdery coating on leaves, is another common fungal disease, especially in late summer. Improving air flow around the plants by not planting too densely and keeping the soil moist by mulching can help to prevent it
Aphids gather on shoot tips from spring and can be crushed, washed off or sprayed with an insecticide if plants aren’t in flower.
Caption: Remove aphids by hand