Botanical name: Rosa

Roses (Rosa) are a classic and instantly recognisable plant, ideal for almost every style of garden. They flower abundantly from early summer in a choice of colours including pastel shades of pink, peach, cream or snowy-white; vibrant yellow and gold; orange, crimson or red. Many roses are fragrant. Some types flower in one flush of blooms while others flower all summer long. Some have colourful fruits (hips). Plants come in a range of forms, from traditional shrubs and climbers to miniature plants for patio containers.


Roses have upright, arching, scrambling or trailing, usually prickly stems. Their leaves are glossy and mid to dark green but occasionally grey-green. Flowers vary in shape and include flat, cupped, rounded, urn-shaped, button-eye, pompon and rosette.


Roses grow best in moisture-retentive, fertile, well-drained soils in a sunny position. They are very responsive to mulching and feeding.


Roses won't thrive in dry, poor or waterlogged soil and few flowers are produced in shade. 

Did you know?

Many modern roses are sold under two names. You can spot this on plant labels where the main 'selling name' is joined in brackets by the name which holds the official Plant Breeders Rights (PBR) name. An example is Gertrude Jekyll ('Ausbord'), which like all other roses is usually only referred to by the selling name - in this case Gertrude Jekyll. 
More information and a key to rose classifications can be found on Roses: Choosing the best

Growing guide

Browse roses

Ground-cover roses

Shrub roses

Modern bush roses (Hybrid Tea and Floribunda)

Standard roses

Climbing roses

Small bush roses (Polyantha, Miniature and Patio roses)

Rambler roses

Roses with very decorative autumn hips

Roses with exceptional fragrance

Roses we recommend

Buy Roses from

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Useful advice

Rose problems: frequently asked questions

Rose problems: frequently asked questions

Rose pruning: general tips

Rose pruning: general tips

Roses: choosing the best

Roses: choosing the best

Roses: planting

Roses: planting

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The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.