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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
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Friday - December 02, 2011

From: Garland, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Shrubs
Title: Climbing native roses for Garland TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I live in Garland, Dallas County, TX and would like climbing roses on the trellis situated against my brick home. What kind would you recommend for the area and any that would be easy to care for. Thank you.

ANSWER:

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center and Mr. Smarty Plants recommend only plants native not only to North America but to the area in which those plants are being grown. With the exception of very few native "wild" roses, all members of the Rosaceae genus are native to China. This doesn't mean they won't grow here, of course they will. It just means that we are not qualified to make recommendations. We will tell you what we do know.

There are 9 members of the Rosaceae genus native to Texas. Native or non-native, there are few roses you could characterize as true "climbing" roses. There are roses with long canes, but the canes tend to be rather stiff and roses have no stick-tights or curling tendrils like true climbing plants do. To go up a brick wall, they would definitely need a stout trellis and you would need to have the patience to tie up the canes as they go. It is not a natural process.

Another thing you need to know is that, generally speaking, roses need full sun, which we consider to be 6 or more hours of sun a day. They are very susceptible to fungal diseases, which means that watering via a sprinkler system, having them in too much shade, or bushes too crowded for good air circulation all are going to cause problems with the health of the roses.

Here is a list of roses native to Texas. You can follow each plant link to the page on that rose in our Native Plant Database to find out color, bloom time and projected height.

Rosa arkansana (Prairie rose)

Rosa arkansana var. suffulta (Prairie rose)

Rosa carolina (Carolina rose)

Rosa carolina var. carolina (Carolina rose)

Rosa foliolosa (White prairie rose)

Rosa setigera (Climbing prairie rose)

Rosa setigera var. tomentosa (Climbing rose)

Rosa stellata (Desert rose)

Rosa woodsii (Woods' rose)

 

From the Image Gallery


Prairie rose
Rosa arkansana

Prairie rose
Rosa arkansana var. suffulta

Carolina rose
Rosa carolina

White prairie rose
Rosa foliolosa

Climbing prairie rose
Rosa setigera

Desert rose
Rosa stellata

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