Rosie the Riveter (Floribunda Rose): History, Characteristics & Cultivation

The Rosie the Riveter rose is a beautiful Floribunda rose cultivar introduced in 2018. It was bred by Christian Bédard, an award-winning rose hybridizer for Weeks Roses, as a tribute to the millions of American women who filled factory and shipyard jobs during World War II. The rose has a double, old-fashioned flowers that bloom in a unique orange-gold color with a pink shading and gold reverse. The flowers are moderately fragrant with a fruity and spicy scent.

The plant grows to a height of 3 to 4 feet and has a rounded and bushy growth habit. It prefers full sun and well-drained soil. The foliage is glossy and dark green. this is a hardy plant, suitable for growing in USDA zones 5 to 9. It is a versatile rose that can be grown in various garden settings, including borders, containers, and mass plantings.

Characteristics of Rosie the Riveter

  • Size and Growth Habit: This is a vigorous climbing rose with a height of 8-12 feet and a spread of 3-6 feet which can be trained to climb a trellis, fence, or wall.
  • Growth Rate: This rose has a fast growth rate. With proper care, it can establish itself quickly and fill out the garden space in no time.
  • Flower: The flowers have a classic floribunda form. They feature a blend of colors, with golden yellow at its base transitioning to warm orange and finishing with touches of scarlet pink at the edges.
  • Bloom Time: It is a prolific bloomer. The blooms appear in late spring to early summer and rebloom sporadically throughout the summer.
  • Fragrance: The blooms have a moderate fruity and spicy scent.
  • USDA Zones: The ‘Rosie the Riveter’ rose is hardy in USDA zones 5-9. In colder zones, some winter protection may be necessary to ensure its health and longevity.
  • Hardiness: It tolerates heat and humidity well and can be somewhat drought-tolerant once established, with good resistance to common rose diseases such as black spot and rust.
  • Lifespan: Can live for 10-20 years with proper care.

Cultivation Tips

  • Planting: Plant in well-drained soil rich in organic matter. Choose a location that receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight daily.
  • Watering: Water regularly, especially during dry periods, to keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Deep watering encourages deep root growth.
  • Fertilizing: Feed with a balanced rose fertilizer during the growing season to promote healthy growth and abundant blooms. Apply a slow-release fertilizer in early spring and a liquid fertilizer every 4-6 weeks during the growing season.
  • Pruning: Prune in late winter or early spring to remove dead or weak growth and to shape the plant. This encourages vigorous flowering and maintains the plant’s form. Deadhead spent blooms to encourage repeat flowering.
  • Mulching: Apply a layer of mulch around the base of the plant to retain moisture, suppress weeds, and regulate soil temperature.