Rose Varieties 101

Is a rose by any other name still as sweet? There are over 200 different varieties of roses out there, which can make it a bit overwhelming to decide what to plant.  To top it off, you’ve probably heard that roses are hard to deal with.  Not so! With a few tips from our summer rose care blog, you can be a master rose gardener in no time! But first, take a look at the different classifications of roses here.  We have broken it down here to make it easier to search for the perfect rose for your garden.


Floribunda –Known as the rose bush that offers a bouquet on every branch, Floribundas are hardy growers that range in size from 1-8 ft tall! Flowers bloom in clusters offering a beautiful show in your garden.  They tend to have ridged stems and grow smaller and bushier than Hybrid Teas. Their disease-resistant foliage makes these roses easy to maintain all year long!hybrid tea

Hybrid Tea – This variety is the rose most commonly used by florists because of its beautifully shaped buds and blooms. Large single flowers sit atop long straight stems making them perfect for cutting for floral arrangements. This bush grows tall and upright and does require careful pruning in the spring to ensure that its branches are strong.  There are well over 100 varieties of Hybrid Tea roses!

grandifloraGrandiflora – By combining the best traits of the Floribunda and Hybrid Tea varieties Grandiflora makes a wonderful garden rose.  They have the same elegant blooms born on long stems as Hybrid Teas but they bloom in the clustered formation of Floribundas. Grandifloras can grow up to 7 ft, making them perfect for hedges or background florals!

knockoutKnockout – Super bloomer, super low maintenance.  When Knockout roses came on the market, they revolutionized the rose industry.  Stunning reds, pinks, and yellow varieties bloom profusely from late spring into fall.  Knockouts are drought-tolerant and disease resistant, which makes them an excellent choice for all gardens!  Prune in early spring – go ahead, they don’t mind being cut back to 2-3 feet tall. During the flowering season, you can deadhead due to unsightly spent blooms, but you don’t have to with this hardy rose.

driftDrift – This low-growing variety was bred specifically to fit into smaller spaces in the landscape.  Perfect for rock gardens, draping over walls, and as a border.  They also are great for container gardens, as well as smaller planting areas.  Drift roses bloom throughout the summer and into fall. They are tough, disease-resistant, winter hardy and virtually maintenance-free. When in bloom, the bush can be completely covered with clusters of beautiful flowers!

lady banksLady Banks – Did you know that the largest rose in the world is a 100 year old Lady Banks in Tombstone, AZ? This climber blooms with miniature roses in the spring. You can find them in yellow or white.  Lady Banks is a quick grower so make sure you have a large area for it to grow.  It trellises well and looks great along fences. It takes pruning well so don’t be afraid to cut it back if its branches grow too long.

The Family Tree carries Knockout and Drift Roses most of the year.  We get our new shipment of roses each year in early February.  Our roses come bare root and we pot them up ourselves, prune them as needed, and give them an initial dose of fertilizer so that they’re ready for planting. For the best selection, shop for your special roses from March to May.