Roses for the High Plains – By Steve Scott & Shane Smith

If you want to focus on hardy roses look to the north. The rose series known as Morden, Explorer & Parkland roses were bred by Canada’s Agriculture-Agrafood Department to have excellent hardiness without protection except natural snowfall. Without snowfall it is a good idea to provide some winter mulch and water. These roses also show excellent disease resistance to the diseases known as blackspot and mildew. Also important, these Canadian roses (Morden, Explorer & Parkland) are good at having repeated blooms throughout the summer. The main bulk of the bloom usually occurs early in the summer. Check out this web site for more information: also visit as a source for hardy roses for the Rocky Mountains.

Another attribute that is helpful to rose survival in our climate is to grow roses that are not grafted and are growing on their own rootstalks. Grafted roses often die back leaving you with a non-blooming rose after the first cold winter.

Also be sure to visit the rose garden at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens for more ideas on which roses are hardy for our climate.

Four good Rose selections for Cheyenne

  • Harrison’s Yellow Rose
    • Height: 5′ – 6′, Width 4′ – 6′
    • Color: Yellow
    • Shape: Broad Upright
    • Bloom time: June
    • Other: Thought to be the yellow rose of Texas, brought west with the pioneers as early as 1830. This rose onlyblooms in spring but provides a dazzling show. This variety is incredibly hardy.
  • Theresa Bugnet Rose
    • Height: 5′ – 6′, Width: 5′ – 6′
    • Color: Pink
    • Shape: Broad arching
    • Bloom time: June – September
    • Other: Very fragrant. Foliage is an attractive blue-green color. Blooms on old wood.
  • Champlain Rose
    • Height: 3′ – 4 ‘, Width 3’
    • Color: Red
    • Shape: Rounded
    • Bloom time: June – September
    • Other: Has light fragrance. Medium green foliage is abundant and lustrous. Has velvety dark red blooms withshowy red stamens.
  • Belle Poitevine Rose Height
    • Height: 5′ – 7′, Width: 4′ – 6′
    • Color: Lilac-Pink
    • Shape: Broad arching
    • Bloom time: June – September
    • Other: Forms huge globular mahogany red hips in late summer. Dark green leaflets.