Looking at hardiness

Don't worry about hardiness! Generally speaking, roses run the gamut of hardiness, and you can find varieties that can grow almost anywhere in the North America, from USDA Hardiness Zones 4 or 5 to 9 or 10. Some roses tolerate colder, Northern winters; others prosper in mild climates. Just as with any important plant purchase, you should make sure that the rose of your choice is considered hardy in your area (see Chapter 3 for info on plant hardiness zones).

Also, just as with any other important plant purchase, you may be willing and able to pamper a marginally hardy rose plant. Winter mulching is important, especially with grafted roses (roses with cold-hardy roots and a less-tough rose variety on top). Details about when and how to do this care, and what material to use, are ahead in the section "Maximizing winter hardiness."

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