Cane-Hardy Roses

(Question)

Hello,

Are there any cane-hardy climbing roses that I can plant in Toronto. I’ve heard that many climbing roses suffer significant die-back during our Toronto winters.

I’ve heard that John Cabot and Therese Bugnet roses are good contenders. If so, are there any nurseries that you may be able to advise? I went to some of them, and it seems that none of the ones I have visited carry these two varieties.

Thank you,

(Answer)

Thank you for contacting the Toronto Master Gardeners regarding hardy climbing roses.

You are correct, the Explorer series of roses ¬†produced by Agriculture Canada are hardy to zone 3 and do not require any winter protection in Toronto’s zone 6 hardiness zone. ‘John Cabot’ and ‘Willian Baffin’ are just two examples in this series

‘Therese Bugnet’ is also an extremely hardy rose however, I should mention that this rose is a shrub rose not a climber.

There is an excellent article Hardier Climbing Roses for Cold Climate by Larry Hodgson ( The Laidback Gardener ) which lists 12 varieties of climbing roses whose hardiness zones range from 2-3 all of which do not require winter protection even in our climate. If you are in the market for hardy shrub roses then you might want to peruse this article.

As for where to purchase these roses a simple goggle search turned up Connon nursery as a supplier for the ‘John Cabot’ rose. Landscape Ontario website contains excellent gardening information as well as a list of local garden centres which are searchable by area.