Colorful, noble, lavishly blooming and can be integrated into any home garden, no matter how small – dwarf roses are among the most popular flowering plants in domestic green spaces. The decorative plants rarely reach a size over 40cm. Due to their low growth, dwarf roses can be used in a variety of ways both indoors and outdoors, for example in flower boxes or outdoors.

Miniature roses – popular varieties

  • Orange Meillandina
  • Peach Meillandina
  • „Pink Symphonie“
  • “Rosemary 89”
  • “Sun Child”

“Sonnenkind” is one of the most popular rose varieties in this class. The upright flowers, which form golden yellow and bright, double blossoms, are climatically among the most robust dwarf roses, which are generally very weatherproof. “Sonnenkind” blooms extremely cleanly, but should also be particularly well protected against fungal diseases. In contrast, the “Rosemary 89” variety is less susceptible to powdery mildew and blackened soot. The bushy and upright roses have double flowers of an intense pink color. This variety is also characterized by excellent rain resistance. The miniature rose “Pink Symphonie”, which also presents pink flowers, is also immune to rain. In addition, this variety is particularly characterized by its variable location; In contrast to most other dwarf rose varieties, the “Pink Symphony” does not necessarily depend on eight hours of daily exposure to the sun, but can also get by with five hours. For this reason, the rose can also be used in partial shade and can withstand southern exposure without any problems. Hobby gardeners who are looking for dwarf roses with strong colors as a splash of color for rock gardens choose the orange-red blooming “Orange Meillandina” or the apricot-colored “Peach Meillandina”.

All of the varieties mentioned are equally suitable for planting individually or as a group, with around eight to nine specimens per square meter being estimated. These varieties are suitable for planters as well as for balcony boxes and troughs.

Location and soil

So that dwarf roses can develop optimally, optimal site conditions and ideal soil are of particular importance. When choosing the location, it should be borne in mind that dew or rain that remains on the leaves of the plants for a long time can promote fungal infestation. For this reason, a free-standing location that offers airy conditions is suitable; the wind optimally dries the moisture on the leaves. In addition, it should be noted that most varieties require at least eight hours of sun exposure per day for optimal growth. Miniature roses usually tolerate cool temperatures well, so it is worthwhile to cultivate the plants outdoors again as early as May after wintering indoors. Various options are available for this; so the dwarf rose fits well as a single splash of color in rock gardens, in small house gardens or in beds. In addition, cultivation in buckets, troughs or flower boxes is also possible. The combination of dwarf roses with weakly growing conifers, for example dwarf pine, sugarloaf spruce or mussel cypress, is particularly effective. The combination with garlic or lavender is also good.

In addition to the ideal site conditions, suitable soil conditions also play a role for the successful cultivation of dwarf roses. The chosen substrate should have the following properties:

  • lehmig
  • rich in humus
  • high proportion of sand

It has also proven useful to choose a medium-heavy soil that is particularly deep and permeable. A neutral pH is also an advantage. As a rule, conventional garden soil can be used, which is enriched as required.

Watering and fertilizing – optimal care

Miniature roses need sufficient moisture during the summer months or during persistent dry periods, whereby freshly planted specimens in particular must be well watered. As a rule of thumb, one or two waterings a week should be watered. It has proven useful to supply the dwarf roses with water in the late evening hours; If you pour at noon, there is a risk that the water droplets will burn the leaves. If the roses are kept in buckets, pots or window boxes, excess liquid must be poured out to prevent waterlogging.

Miniature roses should also be fertilized specifically to ensure a sufficient amount of nutrients. A mineral fertilizer is suitable during the growing season between May and June; After the main bloom in June, however, the fertilization measures should be stopped because the wood cannot mature sufficiently during the cold season and the plant is then particularly susceptible to frost and diseases. Even in the first year of cultivation of dwarf roses, no fertilization should be made so that the roots can develop optimally.

The maintenance of the dwarf rose also includes the regular removal of withered matter; this measure, in which the withered flowers together with the leaves underneath are cut off at an angle, ensures optimal stimulation of the flower formation. Occurring wild shoots are torn off directly at the roots.

Optimal cut of the dwarf rose

Spring is the best time to cut dwarf roses. The pruning measures can be carried out at the same time as the removal of the winter protection.
If the pruning takes place in autumn or during the winter months, there is a risk that the shortened shrub structure will be further reduced by the frost.
In spring, all dead and frozen parts of the plant are removed from near the ground. This is followed by greater thinning by removing too dense, weak or clearly overaged shoots. The stick is basically left with four to a maximum of eight strong shoots, which are shortened by a third. Weakly growing shoots and varieties are shortened the most so that they are stimulated to sprout long and strong stems. The cut back is basically about 5mm above an outwardly growing bud, sloping slightly towards the opposite side. When cutting away side shoots and branches, make sure that no stubs remain.

How much dwarf roses should be cut back depends above all on their location and intended use. If there are individual roses as a splash of color within a rock garden, a long flowering period is desirable, so regular pruning and the removal of wilted flowers are particularly important.
Note: Only sufficiently sharp scissors suitable for this purpose should be used to cut the dwarf roses.

If individual flowers are to be cut in flower vases for decoration, a maximum of 3 flower stalks per plant are to be taken, whereby the cut is made at an angle. In this way, the individual roses remain optimally attractive and vigorous. It is also cut about a centimeter above the buds and only with the rose scissors so that the shoots are not squeezed off.


If the dwarf roses are brought into the house during the cold season, the following conditions should prevail for optimal winter storage:

  • frost-free location
  • Temperatures between 5 and 15 ° C
  • bright and cool

Alternatively, the roses can be left outside. Most varieties survive best in window boxes if the planter is at least 20 cm wide and just as deep. In autumn all roses should be watered again vigorously. Specimens that overwinter outdoors are prepared for winter as early as November; To do this, a 30 cm high layer of soil and compost is piled up around the roots and a protective layer of mulch is placed on top. Particularly sensitive varieties are also covered with twigs and spruce branches.

Planting and Propagating

Rose bushes are available both as bare-root goods and as container goods. Bare-rooted specimens are thoroughly watered before planting in the ground and then dipped in a thick clay broth. Before planting, both bare-root roses and container goods are checked for root quality; in the process, already damaged parts of the root can be removed and particularly long roots can be shortened to a total of 20cm. The dwarf roses are then placed in such a way that the grafting point comes to rest about 5 cm below the surface.

Tip: If several specimens are to be placed next to each other, the rule of thumb applies: Growth height equals distance.

Miniature roses are also grafted. Some varieties can also be propagated using cuttings, which are obtained from mid-August to mid-September and grown in a mini greenhouse for about eight weeks.


Overall, dwarf roses are very sensitive to various fungal diseases, especially powdery mildew and star soot. If the dwarf has soot, the following symptoms will appear:

  • from April or May small round dark spots with a radiant edge
  • Yellowing of the leaves
  • Premature leaf fall
  • rarely also dark bark spots

If, on the other hand, there is powdery mildew infestation, white or gray spots initially appear both on and under the leaves, which can appear as early as spring in warm weather. Later, shoots, buds, leaves, fruits and flowers are covered with a floury-moldy layer, whereby the leaves curl up and the flowers can no longer be opened. Finally, take care of the roses, the topping showing dirty brown discoloration.

The choice of location is of particular importance as a preventive measure against both fungal diseases; If this shows insufficient ventilation or too little sun, dew and rain that collect on the leaves only dry insufficiently and thus promote fungal infestation. In addition, when planting roses in the ground, care should be taken to ensure that the leaves are not too close to the ground. Frequent cutting or thinning, balanced fertilization and regular use of plant strengtheners also help. This includes, above all, horsetail broth. When watering, care should be taken that the leaves are wetted as little as possible. If there is an acute infestation, targeted fungicides can help. Lecithin preparations are preferred here,

Miniature roses are among the most decorative plants that can be planted within the home garden. Hobby gardeners can enjoy the flowers for a particularly long time if they move the plants to an optimal location, carry out pruning measures more often and ensure adequate ventilation; then the development of fungal diseases is also minimized, so that the dwarf roses can develop healthily.

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