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Hybrid Kordesii Rose 'John Davis'


Family: Rosaceae (ro-ZAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rosa (RO-zuh) (Info)
Cultivar: John Davis
Additional cultivar information:(Explorer Series Collection)
Hybridized by Svejda
Registered or introduced: 1977
» View all varieties of Roses


Modern Climber



4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)


6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Bloom Color:

Medium pink (mp)

Bloom Shape:


Flower Fragrance:

Slightly Fragrant

Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Blooms repeatedly



Trained to climb

Trained on pillar

Patent Information:


Other Details:

Resistant to rust

Stems are very thorny

Pruning Instructions:

Blooms on new wood; prune early to promote new growth

Soil pH requirements:

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Propagation Methods:

From softwood cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

From hardwood cuttings

By grafting

By budding

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Anchorage, Alaska

San Jose, California

Denver, Colorado

Glencoe, Illinois

Hampton, Illinois

Hobart, Indiana

Manhattan, Kansas

Litchfield, Maine

Heath, Massachusetts

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Polson, Montana

Albany, New York

Bronx, New York

Asheville, North Carolina

Sarver, Pennsylvania

Yankton, South Dakota

Cuttingsville, Vermont

Lyndhurst, Virginia

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 24, 2015, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

Many consider this the most beautiful rose of the Canadian Explorer series. It is certainly one of the hardiest repeat-flowering climbers, to Z2b. It is also one of the more blackspot-resistant.

3.5" luminous pink flowers with up to 40 petals cover the plant in its first flush. Reports on amount of repeat flowering vary.

Flexible canes, relatively few prickles/thorns.

Slow to establish, especially when propagated own-root. This rose can improve in performance over 5-10 years. Don't judge it in its first three years.


On Jun 15, 2014, truepinkie from Yankton, SD wrote:

Purchased originally because the rose has my deceased brother's name it has been pure joy for 10 years. It has covered the east garage wall by 8 feet and has grown up and onto the roof, 12 feet above the ground. Often the buds appear prior to the leaves and continues blooming through frost providing a wall of pink frangrance. The hips provide food for the caradinals which appear after the first snow so it is a constant visual joy.


On Jun 18, 2012, jimbobobie from Cuttingsville, VT wrote:

I can't praise this rose enough. Extremely cold tolerant, very floriferous, and best of all, it has the fragrance of a tea rose, not the less delicate fragrance of the rugosas. The just opening buds glow in their pinkness.


On Jun 23, 2006, northgrass from West Chazy, NY (Zone 4b) wrote:

Gorgeous pink blossoms! Mine is doing well but has not grown as big as others have stated, I would like to get another one and plant it in a sunnier spot where it would not have to compete with a small Korean lilac. It has proven very hardy with no die back.


On May 21, 2005, Gindee77 from Hampton, IL (Zone 5a) wrote:

This Explorer rose is one of the hardiest I have in my garden. It doesn't have any die-back and is a prolific bloomer. It has a nice shape and the roses are a lovely pink.


On Jun 14, 2004, Paulwhwest from Irving (Dallas area), TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Bred in Canada. One of the Explorer Series.

Seed: R. kordesii x Seedling
Pollen: Seedling


On Apr 23, 2004, branka from Hobart, IN (Zone 5a) wrote:

Out of all the roses that I have grown, John Davis outshines them all. It's at least ten feet tall and mildly fragrant. I have 3 of them climbing up the side of my house and when they are in full bloom, they literally stop traffic. There are hundreds of blossoms at the peak bloom time in June. It is a very healthy, hardy rose that thrives in my area (this is not the best area for rose growing). It comes back year after year bigger and better than before. I cut off as many of the spent blossoms that I can. This gives me a nice sporadic repeat bloom.