Roses comprise a mix of erect shrubs, climbers and scramblers, typically armed with sharp thorns used for hanging onto other vegetation as they grow over it, which makes them intruder proof. Widely known for their beauty and fragrance, most bear an abundance of large, showy flowers above pinnate leaves with serrated margins. There is a rose for every purpose in a wide range of colours, from low ramblers to high hedges and small miniatures to wall or arbour-covering giants. Flowering from late May well into winter, they can be grown in borders, beds or patio containers for a magnificent summer display.
Roses' deep tap roots make them suitable for stabilising soil on a slope, whilst some varieties are also suitable for hedging to make dense, thorny barriers. A large number are double-flowered with many or all of the stamens having mutated into additional petals. Rosa Margaret Merrill and Rosa New Dawn have been credited with the RHS Award of Garden Merit, whilst the Birthday Girl Rose and Golden Wedding Rose make fabulous gifts for those special occasions. If you're looking for something a bit different, Rosa Tequila Sunrise is a particularly striking yellow with scarlet margins from summer to autumn.