What are the Best Climbing Old-Fashioned Roses?

I need an antique climber that is a repeat bloomer, of any color, fragrant and one that preferably blooms in clusters. However, although we live in Zone 6B, we are on a high hill and have a slightly colder "microclimate." Which rose do you suggest?

Old-fashioned roses are one of my favorite subjects. Their beauty and ease of care make them ideal for any garden.

Climbing old-fashioned roses are excellent accents for growing over entry arbors, around doorframes and across fences. I have a friend who has trained climbing ‘New Dawn’ around her kitchen window. The pale pink, fragrant flowers appear continuously from spring through fall framing her view out into the garden. The effect is enchanting. Whenever I am there I half expect to see Snow White smiling at me through the open window.

Here is a list of a few of my favorite old-fashioned climbing roses. One of these is sure to suit your garden needs.

  • Climbing ‘Cecile Brunner’- 1894, Polyantha
    This delightful rose bears pale pink clusters of blooms throughout the growing season. Grows 20 – 30 feet. Fragrant. Hardiness zones: 6 – 9.
  • Climbing ‘Clotilde Soupert’ – 1902, Polyantha
    White clusters of blooms adorn this garden beauty from spring until late fall in my garden. Grows 12 – 15 feet. Fragrant. Hardiness zones: 6 – 9.
  • Yellow ‘Lady Banks’ – 1807, Species
    This rose only blooms once but what a display! Cascades of tightly clustered yellow blooms cover the plant for as long as 6 weeks and perfume the air with a sweet violet scent. The canes are nearly thornless, which makes this a perfect rose for accenting an entryway. The only downside to this rose is that it is susceptible to temperatures below 15 degrees F. Grows 12 – 20 feet. Fragrant. Deer resistant. Hardiness zones: 8 – 9.
  • ‘Lamarque’ – 1830, Noisette
    This is one of my favorite climbing roses, so I had to include it on the list. However, it is only cold hardy to zone 7 so it might not be suitable for a zone 6 garden. I have this rose planted so that it grows up and over the door to my chicken house. It blooms repeatedly throughout the summer and often as late as December. The large flowers are fully double, creamy white. Grows 12 – 20 feet. Fragrant. Hardiness zones: 7 -9.
  • ‘Madame Alfred Carriere’ – 1879, Noisette
    The hefty blooms of this rose are highly fragrant, making it a favorite for planting over an entry arbor. The continuously blooming flowers open a pale pink and fade to cream. The canes produce a minimal amount of thorns – always plus when selecting roses for training to grow up arbors and trellises. Grows 15 – 20 feet. Fragrant. Hardiness zones: 6 – 9.
  • ‘New Dawn’ – 1930, Large Flowering Climber
    Although not a true old-fashioned rose, my list would not be complete without ‘New Dawn’. I have this rose planted in several locations in my garden. Requiring little effort on my part, this rose rewards me throughout the growing season with large, pale pink blooms and lustrous, dark green foliage. Grows 12 – 20 feet. Fragrant. Hardiness zones: 5 – 9.
  • Climbing ‘Old Blush’ – Unknown Date, China
    I have ‘Old Blush’ situated along the front fence in my garden. The lilac pink blooms blend nicely with the maroon barberry and violet roses of my ‘Russell’s Cottage’ planted nearby. The flowers form in loose clusters and are produced with such abandon that they fade quickly to make room for more. Grows 12- 20 feet. Fragrant. Hardiness zones: 7 – 9.
  • Climbing ‘The Fairy’ – Unknown Date, Polyantha
    As the name implies, ‘The Fairy’ is dainty in stature but robust in bloom. Petite, deep pink blooms cover this rose in tight clusters from spring through fall. Grows 8 – 12 feet. Not fragrant. Hardiness zones: 5 – 9.
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