10 easy ways to use “carpet” or groundcover roses in your landscape

companion planting

Lavender interplanted with roses is said to help deter aphids

I planted some bare root Flower Carpet® roses last month (in May). They’ve already got buds on them, ready to bloom! Here are the Flower Carpet Amber roses I planted in masses, to knit together into a low-growing blanket along a walkway next to my house:

Easy Care Flower Carpet Amber

Flower Carpet Amber just after being planted in mass as a foundation planting

Despite near-record rains for the month of June here, I’m happy to report that these disease-resistant roses’ shiny, green foliage is clean and completely free of black spot. (I wish my other plants were as healthy, like my tar-spot ridden holly bushes or my mildew-covered bachelor’s buttons).

So anyway, as I played around with these low-growing, easy-care roses, my mind started working on all the ways you can use them in your landscape (most of which just can’t do with higher-growing roses). Here are a few ideas I came up with:

 

1) As a backdrop for a special feature:

Flower Carpet Amber rose

Flower Carpet Amber ads a soft touch to this patio dining area

 

Flower Carpet Rose Pink Supreme

Flower Carpet Pink Supreme as backdrop to large whiskey-barrel fountain

Flower Carpet Pink

Low-maintenance Flower Carpet roses are ideal for erosion control on slopes

2) As a low mounding hedge softening the edges of a driveway:

Flower Carpet Pink

Flower Carpet Pink is a perfect low maintenance landscape plant

3) As a full, cascading garden wall topper …

Flower Carpet Coral

Flower Carpet Coral softens this stone wall

Flower Carpet Scarlet

Flower Carpet Scarlet with lavender make a lovely mix and helps with erosion along this bank

4) As a hedge of tree roses (also referred to as topiaries or standards)…

Flower Carpet White

Flower Carpet White as Standards

5) As large masses of color in a foundation planting . . .

Flower Carpet Pink and Appleblossom

Mixed varieties of Flower Carpet (Pink and Appleblossom) in a foundation planting

6) As “first-tier,” low-growing color at the front of the perennial border or bed . . .

Flower Carpet rose

Mixed varieties of Flower Carpet as an easy-care border planting

 

7) As a low-growing blanket of color along walkways or the strip between the sidewalk and the street …

Easy Care Flower Carpet Rose

Easy Care Flower Carpet Pink along sidewalks at a Naval Base

Flower Carpet Red

Red Flower Carpet roses on slope at Ladera Ranch in South Orange County, California, featured here by Landscape Design/Build magazine’s e-newsletter.

Easy Care Flower Coral

Cascading Flower Carpet Coral softens this walkway

 

8) As matching or complementary color with other garden plants …

Tropicanna Gold with Flower Carpet Yellow

Flower Carpet Yellow with Tropicanna Gold in background

9) In containers …

Easy Care Flower Carpet Appleblossom

Flower Carpet Appleblossom single planting in container softens any landscape setting

10) At the very front of your landscape to boost curb appeal …

easy care roses

Flower Carpet Pink Supreme used as a border hedge along a coastal road in Maine.

Flower Carpet Pink Supreme

Low-maintenance Flower Carpet Pink Supreme is great as a large landscape planting

 

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10 Responses to 10 easy ways to use “carpet” or groundcover roses in your landscape

  1. Colette Larson April 18, 2013 at 4:55 am #

    Don’t you have Problems with asian beetles? I have them on every rose I own! What is your solution?

    • Your Easy Garden Team April 18, 2013 at 2:01 pm #

      Hi Colette, We’ve seen from our own trials and also heard from our home garden testers that Flower Carpets aren’t nearly as susceptible to Japanese Beetles as some other varieties of easy-care roses. Milky Spore is an organic approach to dealing with them and we’ve heard good reports on its effectiveness. However, it’s a long process. There are several organic and non-organic sprays on the market that are pretty effective too.

  2. Graciebelle April 18, 2013 at 2:16 pm #

    I grow a number of Flower Carpet and other easy roses . For whatever reasons, the beetles seem to attack most varieties of my other roses but don’t bother the Flower Carpets nearly as much, even those that are side-by-side. I have had some on my Flower Carpet Yellows and a few on Amber but they don’t totally defoliate the blossoms and plants like they do on other roses and plants in my garden. I generally just hand-pick them in the early AM when they’re kind of sluggish and drop them into a container of soapy water. Stay away from the beetle traps though – they just seem to bring more into my area!

  3. Carol Goodall April 13, 2014 at 3:25 am #

    I’m thrilled to read about the Flower Carpet Roses. How do they preform in zone 5 southwest Pennsylvania? Where can I buy them? What about shady areas? My property has a lot of shady areas and I would love to add color around the trees.

    • Your Easy Garden Team April 13, 2014 at 12:36 pm #

      They do very well in Southwest PA. My friend still lives in Pittsburgh (Crafton) and hers do great. You can buy them at most of the big box stores like Home Depot or Lowes.
      They do need sun however. At least 6 hours of sunlight per day.

      • kbmom May 16, 2014 at 4:53 am #

        i would love to try these flower carpet roses. i have never tried them before but i need something to go in the front of my house under a bay window and all along the front of my house. i am a beginner so how do you prepare the soil? i have full sun can you suggest which one to use? how do you know how many to buy? how deep do you plant? how far apart? ,etc. help!!! these would be perfect for my first garden can you help? will this be a good plant in the area described? im in oklahoma. are all varieties of this ( colors) as durable as the other? where can i buy them and what do you look for when picking them out?

        • judieyeg May 16, 2014 at 2:02 pm #

          Thanks for these great questions on Flower Carpet. You should be able to find Flower Carpet at you local garden centers and possibly Home Depot and/or Lowes. Generally the garden centers will select the colors that are best suited to their climate but for your area, you can’t go wrong with the “next generation” varieties, especially Flower Carpet Scarlet and Flower Carpet Pink Supreme. Flower Carpet roses do well in full sun. When you purchase the plants, the labels have very clear directions on how deep to plant and generally we suggest that you plant them about 3 feet apart. We also have 2 videos that will be helpful. Once is Planting Flower Carpets Along a Walkway and the other covers Creating a New Bed with Flower Carpets. Both of these are by Dave Epstein from Growing Wisdom.com and should help in demystifying the process. Basically Flower Carpets are very, very easy to grow and will tolerate just about any soil conditions but the looser it is, the better they’ll perform. If you have clay-like soil, you should amend it with peat of compost, shredded leaves, etc. to make it easier for the roots to spread and grow. This is really true for just about any plant. Please let us know how this works out! Happy Gardening!

  4. Robin August 17, 2014 at 12:23 am #

    I love these and would love to use them in front of my house. I just had my loropetalum pulled up, they just got too big. I live in Texas and they would be in full sun! Anyone else in Texas have these and how do they do?

  5. tina December 29, 2015 at 8:01 pm #

    Do you know where I can find short rose standards? All the ones I see for sale are 36 inches tall or more. I’m looking for something that is closer to 12 inches or 24 inches tall

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