Growing Blaze Climbing Rose

b11 Like something out of a fairy-tale, ‘Blaze’ is covered in lush, red roses from spring to frost.

‘Blaze’ is just what you picture a climbing rose ought to be: romantically rich in color, dramatic, vigorous, and covered in flowers from spring to frost; In a nutshell a real showstopper in the garden. Foliage is a very dark, forest-green and slightly thick like leather. Although it is stated ‘Blaze’ has a mild fragrance, I do not notice any, but maybe that’s because I’m comparing it to my heavier scented Old Garden Roses. The blossoms are semi-double, with approximately 25 petals, and are borne in clusters on sturdy stems. While in bloom, the flowers literally cover the entire plant living up to it’s name as being literally a blaze of color. As I write this, our Blaze is getting ready for a repeat performance only weeks after the first flush of bloom.

This is our ‘Blaze’ which is currently in it’s second season in our garden. This photo was taken last June during it’s first flush of blooms. 

EDIT: Full disclosure, that trellis is no longer there (it was only temporarily “hung” and as you can see was about ready to fall apart.) The Mister will be building a trellis that is more secure this spring. Here’s a post we put together as to how to install a trellis against your house for a climbing rose. 

Bred by Joseph Kallay and introduced by Jackson and Perkins in 1932, ‘Blaze’ is considered a modern, large-flowered, climbing rose reaching heights and spread of 15 feet and more in certain locations. Hardy to zone 6b, ours is placed against the front of the house in a south-facing location.

‘Blaze’ is not to be confused withBlaze Improved, sometimes referred to as Demokracie and introduced by Jackson and Perkins in 1950.

In our garden, ‘Blaze’ is very vigorous and disease/insect resistant. Although many gardeners complain ‘Blaze’ is susceptible to blackspot, I have not seen that yet with ours. EDIT: Blech…blackspot city last spring. Guess I spoke too soon! 

‘Blaze’ does have thorns, but they are not particularly abundant.

As our ‘Blaze’ rose continues to grow and flourish, I have one regret and that is I wish I had placed it in a location where it would be better supported. As it is, the trellis and space that I have provided it is quite narrow and it’s going to be tricky training it to grow up and over the window it is growing beside. If you decide to add ‘Blaze’ to your garden, make sure you offer a lot of room and a very sturdy support and then maybe someday your rose will look like THIS. Amazing, huh?

The American Rose Society rates this rose as only “average” but it in our garden it performs better than that.

This photo was taken this morning and as you can see, barely 1 month later, ‘Blaze’ has filled out nicely and is already beginning to bloom a second time. If you look closely, you can see some Japanese Beetle damage on the leaves (darn those beetles!) but otherwise they are very healthy. The American Rose Society only rates Blaze as “average”.

Although I purchased our ‘Blaze’ (not to be confused with ‘Blaze Improved’) from our local big box store, it can also be purchased, own-root, from Rogue Valley Roses

18 thoughts on “Growing Blaze Climbing Rose

  1. 7 years ago, my husband and I dug out a little rose from the East side of our house as it never grew or blossomed. I was surprised to find a little metal J & P tag around the main stem, buried in the soil. It indicates that it is a CL.BLAZE. We moved it into the Southwest part of the yard where it receives sunlight for the majority of the day and this year it has really exploded with blossoms. I thought you might find this interesting as we are in Calgary, Alberta Canada, which is a zone 3.

  2. Can I plant a climbing Blaze rose bush on my island out on my pond? It’s a small island. the Pond is 6 foot by 25 foot

    1. Hi Kayla, there is only one rose that I know of, a species rose called R. palustris, that would survive a boggy soil. Otherwise, all other roses require very good drainage…they do not like “wet feet.” For this reason, I wouldn’t recommend planting ‘Blaze’ rose in your pond island. There are some beautiful flowering plants that would grow quite well there instead, such as Primula and Iris sibirica. If you’re thinking well maybe you’d like to try R. palustris, I found one for sale here. Good luck!

  3. The ticket for my Climbing Blaze says cold hardiness 20 to 30 F. I live in Brooklyn, N.Y Should I return it? Also I have a 40 inch large pot. Do you think I could plant it there?

    1. Hi Brenda! I’m not sure ‘Blaze’ would be a good choice for a container because it can get very large. That’s not to say you can’t try it, though. But if you do, you will want to bring the container into a protected location for the winter (we bring our container roses into our unheated garage every winter.) Here is more information on growing roses in containers that may be of help to you! As for finding out your hardiness zone, here is the link for that. We’re in 6b and that is the cutoff for growing ‘Blaze’ which is hardy to 6b according to HMF. Last winter, which as you know was really cold, I had some dieback on our ‘Blaze’ even with it planted against the south-facing wall of our home. In my experience, I have found that there are many David Austin roses that do very well in a container (still, they must have winter protection.) ‘Munstead Wood’ is probably our best one. Good luck!

  4. I was wondering if you could help me with some information on the blase rose bush. I bought a house a few months ago. Now that we are getting into spring, I have been spending a lot of time outside. One of my ‘projects’ has been trying to determine the different flowers and trees I now have. I have a rose bush I started working on today and found a tag on it and all I could read was BLAZE. I googled it and found it to be a type of rose bush and found your website. It doesn’t look like it had been cared for very well for quite some time (the previous owner was in his 80’s and lived alone). I would greatly appreciate any information you could give me as to caring for it, or a good website where I can find helpful information. Thank you.

    1. Hi Lee Ann, thank you for your visit!
      If I were you, I’d prune out any dead wood and then give a topdressing of compost (several inches), a sprinkling of organic fertilizer (Mill’s Magic Mix is a good one), and top with mulch. And then wait and see how she does for you this season. Roses are surprisingly resilient and it could be all yours needs is a little TLC. More helpful info about rose care can be found on the American Rose Society’s webpage. Good luck!

  5. This is the fourth year for my three Blaze rose bushes and they flowered beautifully the first three years. This year there are no buds. There is new growth at the base. I live in Ontario, Canada. I have never really pruned them, do you think that is my problem? If you have any advice I would be very grateful. Regards

    1. Hi Steve, here is a link to vendors who say they carry this rose. But you might just want to try your local big box store–that’s where we found ours. Good luck!

  6. Hi, this is my first year to own an climbing blaze. I had all kinds of roses and it is so beautiful. My question is what do I do to protect it this winter or winterize it? I live in New Brunswick Canada and we have cold winters. Thank you so much in advance for your advise. Nicole

  7. Hello I have a blaze rose bush this year is first time blooming and I love if I have a ? Thou Do I snip off the old blooms so it will keep blooming till Frost?

    1. Greetings, My Blaze is at least 30 years old. It blooms its wee heart out every year. For the first time some of the new branches have died back. Is this a sign of old age, and is it time to
      replace the poor thing?

      Thank you so much.

      1. Hi Fran! How wonderful to have an old Blaze rose in your garden. The canes “dying back” could be attributed to any number of things. It could be signs of stress, disease, winter dieback, insect damage or even a nutrient deficiency to name a few. So, without much more info to go on, I will tell you that roses, even climbers, like to have old, non productive canes pruned out from time to time to allow for fresh, new growth and more flowering. Since your Blaze is so old, I would suspect that’s the case here. Take a look at these pruning tips to help you with taking out some of those older canes and shaping your rose. You might also want to perform a soil test, if you haven’t done so already, to see if there are any nutrients needed. Roses are heavy feeders! Hope this helps! 🙂

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