In spite of their delicate appearance, miniature roses are tough plants that offer a lot to gardeners. They can be used in the landscape like other roses but are especially good in containers because of their small size. Plant them in the center of a pot and surround them with cascading plants for an attractive hanging basket or pot up several plants in 12” pots and make a charming group arrangement. Give them full sun, plenty of water and fertilizer and you will have showy treat all season.
Most miniature roses make good container plants but these five are especially noteworthy.
Bright red, pointed buds open to flowers with a flat mass of 24-30 tightly quilled petals. Flowers are borne in clusters of 3-5 and are complemented by shiny, medium green disease resistant leaves.
Flower Size: 1.2”
Scent: Very fragrant
‘Debut’ (aka ‘Douce Symphonie’)
Flowers begin with petals that are cream-colored with with yellow base and crimson edges. As the flowers open the cream and yellow fade to white and the crimson fades to cherry red. Flowers are borne in clusters of 3-7 ; leaves are small, glossy, and dark green. The plant is bushy, healthy and repeats well.
Color: Cherry red and white
Flower Size: 1.4”
Scent: Little or none
‘Red Cascade’ is classified as a miniature climber and is very pretty in a hanging basket. But beware, it will out-grow its container in a season especially in a warm climate. The small dark red flowers are cupped with 35 petals and borne in clusters of 5-25. The leaves are glossy and healthy, the stems covered with prickles. The plants are very floriferous and bloom almost continuously. They are fairly disease resistant but may develop mildew in some climates.
Color: Deep red
Flower Size: 1.2”
Height: 6.6’ spread
Introduced in 1965, ‘Starina’ brought attention to miniature roses and started the craze for them. The flowers have pointed buds that open to orange-red flowers with 35 petals and hybrid-tea form. Leaves are dark green and glossy, plants are disease resistant and repeat well.
Flower Size: 1.2
Scent: Medium and sweet
The dark velvety red flowers have 17-25 petals and hybrid-tea form, and most are borne on a solitary stem. The leaves are dark green and semi-glossy; the plant is healthy, floriferous and repeats well.
Color: Dark red
Flower Size: 1.5”
Scent: None to slight
Miniature roses, like other plants, need special care when grown in containers. They tend to dry out more quickly than when grown in the garden and so must have deep and frequent watering. Needless to say, the frequently watering causes the nutrients to be leached from the soil, so the container grown minis will have to be fertilized more often. They also need full sun, so don’t try to bring them inside unless you have supplementary lighting.