Rosa 'Zéphirine Drouhin'
Common Name: bourbon rose 
Type: Deciduous shrub
Family: Rosaceae
Zone: 5 to 9
Height: 4.00 to 12.00 feet
Spread: 3.00 to 6.00 feet
Bloom Time: May to frost
Bloom Description: Dark pink
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium
Suggested Use: Hedge
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Attracts: Butterflies


Best grown in medium moisture, slightly acidic, well-drained garden loams in full sun to very light shade. Best flowering and disease resistance generally occur in full sun, however. Water deeply and regularly (mornings are best). Avoid overhead watering. Good air circulation promotes vigorous and healthy growth and helps control foliar diseases. Summer mulch helps retain moisture, keeps roots cool and discourages weeds. Remove spent flowers to encourage rebloom. Crowns need winter protection in cold winter areas such as St. Louis. Remove and destroy diseased leaves from plants, as practicable, and clean up and destroy dead leaves from the ground around the plants both during the growing season and as part of a thorough cleanup during winter (dormant season). Prune as needed in late winter to early spring.

'Zephirine Drouhin' is noted for its shade tolerance.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Rosa is a genus of about 150 species of deciduous (occasionally evergreen) shrubs and climbers noted for their beautiful, often fragrant, single, semidouble or double flowers which are borne singly or in clusters on often prickly stems clad with 5-9 leaflets often having toothed margins.

Climbing roses usually need support by securing to a pillar, fence or wall but some can be grown more as a shrub. Some are also suitable as a groundcover. Many rebloom throughout summer but some flower just once in spring.

Genus name comes from the Latin name for rose.

'Zephirine Drouhin' is an old Bourbon rose from 1868. It is typically grown in two different forms: (1) large-flowered climbing rose to 12' tall or (2) large shrub rose usually pruned to about 6' tall. Graham Thomas expresses the opinion that this rose is best grown as a climber. Features profuse, sweetly scented, semi-double, dark pink blooms (3.5-4" diameter) from May to frost on prickle-free canes and stems. Foliage emerges with a bronze-purple tinge, but matures to a semi-glossy rich green. Purplish canes may be quite attractive in winter after foliage drop.


Roses are susceptible to a large number of diseases, the most common of which are black spot, powdery mildew, rust and rose rosette. Although good cultural practices are the first line of defense in disease control, regular preventative fungicide applications throughout the growing season are usually required, particularly in humid climates with regular summer rainfall such as the St. Louis area. Potential insect problems include aphids, beetles, borers, scale, thrips, rose midges, leafhoppers and spider mites. Local rose associations and extension services are usually able to offer specific recommendations and advice for selecting and growing roses.


When trained as a large-flowered climber, this rose may be grown on walls, arbors, trellises, along fences or around pillars. When pruned as a shrub, this rose may be grown as a specimen or in small groups in borders, cottage gardens, foundations or rose gardens. Shrub form is also effective as an informal hedge.