The Unusually-Colored Rose Variety That Will Add Interest To Your Garden

There's good reason rose bushes are the stars of so many gardens — not only are their flowers beautiful and fragrant, but they are also available in a rainbow of colors. Whether you like pink, red, yellow, or even purple, there's a rose for that. For those looking for a slightly more subtle elegance in their rose bush, the Hot Cocoa rose, with its smoky reddish-orange hue, must be seen to be believed.

Hot Cocoa roses are a type of floribunda rose. These types of shrubs are smaller than tea roses but larger than miniature roses. They are generally healthier than hybrid tea roses, as well. A Hot Cocoa rose bush usually grows to about 4 feet tall and wide and boasts 4-inch flowers. It is also a continually blooming rose, meaning you should have flowers all summer long. Sadly, the flowers don't smell like chocolate but are instead described as fruity and spicy.

Choosing and caring for Hot Cocoa roses

Hot Cocoa rose bushes, like many types of roses, can be purchased either grafted onto roots from a different type of rose (these are called rootstock roses) or grown from their own roots. Both options have advantages and disadvantages. Rootstock roses develop more quickly, giving you beautiful blooms in a shorter time frame. Heirloom Roses, who sell only own-root roses, recommends buying plants that have not been grafted as this prevents suckering from the roots and, in their opinion, creates a stronger plant in the long run.

Regardless of whether you purchase a Hot Cocoa rose that has been grafted or one grown on its own roots, the plant will grow best in a full-sun location with well-draining soil. Roses are heavy feeders and benefit from a growing medium with plenty of organic material. They also need regular applications of slow-release fertilizer to bloom their best. Hot Cocoa roses are hardy in zones 5 through 10.

Using Hot Cocoa roses in the garden

Hot Cocoa roses generally grow to about 4 feet tall and are perfect for use in perennial borders. Plant smaller flowers in complementary colors, like tulips and daffodils for spring color, daylilies for summer, and mums for autumn in front of the roses. Alternatively, you can plant flowers and herbs like chocolate mint and chocolate flowers, known for their chocolate smell around the rose, creating a chocolate-scented garden to complement the spiced fruit smell and chocolatey color of the Hot Cocoa roses.

Hot Cocoa roses also look beautiful surrounded by different types of rose bushes. Smaller shrubs such as drift roses can be planted in front of your Hot Cocoa rose, and larger climbing roses can grow on a trellis behind it. Using white roses will allow the color of the Hot Cocoa roses to really pop. With that many roses growing so closely together, you may want to also plant rosemary and lavender nearby, as these garden herbs are known to keep pests away from roses