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Roses That Tolerate Partial Shade for Houseplants
Most people are surprised to learn that there are roses that tolerate partial shade. We usually consider roses as full-sun-loving plants. In fact, gardeners rarely think of planting roses anywhere but in a sunny location.
And roses don’t grow in full shade. While they all relish the sun, some varieties adjust to partial shade. And these might be perfect for houseplants.
According to experts, the roses that flower the most, such as the floribundas and the shrub roses, are most apt to tolerate partial shade. They produce fewer blooms in the partial shade area than if they were in full sun. But they will grow and bloom. So, for the houseplant that will have less than six hours of full sun, choose a rose that produces large, plentiful flowers.
One expert pointed out a bonus to us. The paler-colored roses, which don’t show as well in bright sunlight, almost glow in the filtered light of partial shade. That makes them even more intriguing!
Rose Names Seem Confusing
Rose varieties continue to be hybridized and created to meet the demand of people who collect them. Although the scientific names appear clear, the varieties seem to blend together.
The main genus, Rosa, consists of four subgenera, one of which carries the name Rosa, like the genus. Rosa Rosa (subgenera) divides into 11 sections. Confusing? It can be, even for avid growers. With long Latin names, the roses commonly receive a subgenus name such as Rosa Gold.
But the naming confusion continues. Sometimes the same rose will be named different things by different botanists. And then there is the possibility that the plant may have a commercial name incorporated into it.
Don’t worry. Usually, the names can be sorted out. And for the needs of a houseplant, your main concern is the care and growing conditions it needs. When you understand that, you can then work through the naming issue. However, for a list of flower names using the Latin, see this page.
We’ve compiled a list of roses that tolerate partial shade and can acclimate to your home environment. Please take note of the sizes. Of course, you might want a larger specimen for your sunroom. But if you really need a small, hanging planter, the 6-foot tall rose might be a bit much.
“What a lovely thing a rose is!” – Arthur Conan Doyle
Now, let’s find a few roses that adapt to shade. Within each, we’ve provided a little information regarding the potential size as this will help you decide the type of plant and placement.
Rosa ‘Ice Meidiland’
‘Ice Meidiland’ Rose grows well in partial shade. At a low height of only 1-2 feet, it’s considered a ground cover rose. Known as a very easy to care for rose, it grows well in a container. In fact, with good disease resistance and adaptability, we might consider it a good starter houseplant rose.
Indeed, if you like subtle colors, consider this rose. One look at the beautiful white blossoms shaded with a very soft pink on this rose’s blossoms will convince you.
Rosa floribunda “Gruss an Aachen”
‘Gruss an Aachen’ Rose fills out your houseplant container without taking over the house. Like most floribunda, it produces huge numbers of buds, often covering most of it’s greenery. When they open they reveal double flowers, salmon pink in color, but fading to a creamy white. Just gorgeous!
While this rose enjoys life outside as a hedge or a feature, we think it truly stands out in your sunroom or bright family room window, too.
Rosa floribunda ‘Seafoam’
The ‘Seafoam’ Rose makes its mark a ground cover or border planting. However, we think its beauty shows well as a climbing rose. Staying for short, usually under 3-feet tall, it functions as a houseplant on a table, floor, or even a large hanging basket.
Seafoam adapts well to its environment. Producing masses of delicate white blooms, it provides an interesting focal point or accent.
Rosa floribunda ‘Marmalade Skies’
Aptly named, ‘Marmalade Skies’ Rose produces masses of blooms for the many months from early summer through fall. Usually staying under 3-feet tall, this rose features gorgeous tangerine blooms.
In partial shade, the blooms will be less plentiful but still abundant. As a houseplant in either full sun or partial shade, ‘Marmalade Skies’ will not disappoint.
Rosa floribunda ‘Anthony Meilland’
The deep, rich shade of yellow that distinguishes the ‘Anthony Meilland’ Rose will not fade. In fact, in partial shade, you will notice the gold glow. Growers enjoy the very light, beautiful fragrance from this plant’s blooms. And with a second bloom in late summer, you will enjoy that feature longer.
While it sometimes grows to 4-feet, many stay in the 2 to 3-feet range. As such, it performs well as a houseplant in either full sun or partial shade.
Rosa floribunda ‘Passionate Kisses’
The ‘Passionate Kisses’ Rose, also known by the official name, Rosa ‘Meizebel,’ gives true meaning to continual blooming. Indeed, this delightful rose, which usually stays under 4-feet tall, While the name might draw rose enthusiasts to it, it’s compact design and abundant blooms ensure it remains popular.
The salmon-colored blooms light up in the partial shade, making it a good candidate for a houseplant. Smaller plants display well in hanging baskets but as they grow, some might need to change to a larger floor planter. Either way, this rose will win you over.
Rosa ‘Carefree Wonder’
Slightly larger than the first few we featured, the ‘Carefree Wonder’ Rose produces an abundance of gorgeous blossoms. Considered a shrub rose, it adapts easily to a variety of conditions. Imagine huge masses of single blooms of pink blossoms, edged in white. That is the ‘Carefree Wonder.’
Feature this rose on a plant stand or in a floor pot. It blooms throughout the season, giving you months of beautiful blooms.
Rose enthusiasts consider the ‘Playboy’ Rose to be among the most shade-tolerant available. But this plant is also known for good disease resistance and adaptability. The glossy green leaves, showcase the amazing coloration of the large semi-double blooms. The flower begins yellow, deepening to an orange, and finishing in red before the bloom dies. The Playboy Rose, also sometimes called Rosa ‘Cheerio,’ produces masses of blooms, but stays in a rather compact form. In fact, it rarely reaches beyond 4-feet tall. While it grows well in your landscape, it does well in an indoor container, given enough space to stretch a bit.
Rosa x ‘Radrazz’
Also known as Radrazz, the Red Knock Out Rose combines great beauty with easy growing. Radrazz is disease resistant, including having good resistance to black spot disease. Known to be drought-tolerant, it proves able to adapt to summers that are dry or those that are humid.
Need more reason to love this cherry red beauty? Radrazz produces blooms from early spring through early winter. And at a maximum height of 4-feet tall, you can enjoy this shade-tolerant plant in your home or landscape.
Rosa ‘Fair Bianca’
Cultivated by David Austin, a well-known rose enthusiast, Fair Bianca is known as an English Rose. A very dependable rose that is resistant to most pests, it is cold hardy, and heat tolerant. While it does not bloom year-round, it does bloom quite heavily from mid-summer with fewer blooms in the fall.
Fair Bianca, also known as Ausca, packs a delicious spicy scent in pure white blooms. Also notable is the way the petals are so densely packed, creating an almost cloud-like impression. With a height of 3-5-feet, Fair Bianca makes a strong focal point in a large pot in your home.
Rosa rugosa ‘F.J. Grootendort’
For an adaptable and dependable rose, choosing F.J. Grootendorst is a great option. These rugosas are carefree growers with classic blooms. Originally it produced clusters of double, bright red blossoms. Selective breeding has now produced other varieties in pink and white.
A larger plant often growing to 5-6-feet tall, F.J. Grootendorst needs to be considered a floor plant when grown to that height. However, you may keep it pruned to a manageable size if you choose. Either way, use it to fill a featured part of the room. It will not disappoint.
The ‘Ballerina’ Rose reminds me of wildflowers. Clusters of pink and white blooms, each made from 5 petals, make this a distinctive rose. And this disease-resistant rose emits a beautiful fragrance, too.
While it grows to be a beautiful bush, it can also be trained as a climbing rose. Expect a height of 5-6 feet unless you keep it trimmed back.
Rosa floribunda ‘Iceberg’
As a true floribunda, ‘Iceberg’ Rose produces masses of white as snow buds. Then, these open to display the beautiful double rose.
Interestingly, Iceberg is available as either a shrub or a climbing rose. The shrub grows to about 4-feet tall. However, the climbing rose often reaches 12-feet. Depending on your houseplant need, choose the option that best suits.
Rosa ‘Mary Rose’
Mary Rose delivers both beauty and a delicious honey-like fragrance. Mary Rose produces large, 4 to 5-inch dark pink buds. As they open, they reveal full, light pink rosettes. All of this beauty presents on a full, bushy shrub that goes 4 to 5-feet high.
Given the resistance to disease and the multiple flowering, Mary Rose makes a gorgeous focal houseplant. Keep this beauty as a floor plant or trimmed a bit to rest atop a plant stand.
Rosa ‘New Dawn’
Another fragrant rose, ‘New Dawn’ Rose usually blooms twice a year, first in Spring, then again in late Summer. The double pink blossoms fade to a soft, baby pink color as they age. And this gorgeous rose features good disease resistance, too.
New Dawn grows to about 4-feet tall as a bush type, but will continue up to 11-feet when grown as a climber. Choose which version highlights your home the best. Or, keep some of each!
Rosa ‘Zéphirine Drouhin’
‘Zepherine Drouhin’ Rose provides your home with the old-style rose fragrance while producing deep crimson-pink blooms. It takes easily to being trained as a climbing rose and thankfully is also thornless. Zepherine Drouhin loves the sun but will tolerate partial shade. However, ensure that the humidity is mid-range, not high. In high humidity, this rose may develop fungus problems.
Zepherine Drouhin will climb 4 to 12-feet but can be trimmed to a shorter height if preferred. Imagine this colorful display as a focal point in the corner of your sunroom.
‘Eden Climber’ Rose displays very large, old-fashioned type double blooms. The colors include pink, cream, and yellow pastels with deep green foliage. Most find the delicious fragrance just as inviting.
Known as a most floriferous climber, it attains a height of 6 to 10 feet. In your home, this plant creates an incredible display.
Rosa ‘Golden Showers’
‘Golden Showers’ Rose comes from the continuous bright, yellow blossoms it produces. The delicious honey-like fragrance offers a bonus to your home’s air.
However, this modern climber needs room to grow. In fact, Golden Showers easily grows 8 to 10-feet to beautify a wall or trellis.
What does *Part Shade* mean?
All of these are truly roses that tolerate partial shade. However, they cannot tolerate full shade. They require at least three hours of direct sunlight each day. They thrive with 3 to 6 hours of direct sunlight each day. And they will produce an array of gorgeous, often fragrant, flowers year after year.
However, if the sunlight is overly filtered or less than the required amount, they cannot thrive. In fact, you might expect them to die.
If you still want to bring one or more of these eye-catching delights into your home, you may. Consider using a full-spectrum sunlamp.
In fact, using a sunlamp provides additional benefits. You choose the number of hours the plants receive sunlight. And you control the times. For easier control, consider attaching a timer to your sunlamp.
“We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon instead of enjoying the roses blooming outside our windows today.” – Dale Carnegie