Old garden roses.

I have come to this subject through many years of trials. What will fit the garden soil and what will survive .What is truly healthy and what needs pampers. Here in my gardens in Autumn is just turning over into early winter . Zone 5a but acts as if zone 4 on exposed front of our land . Until hedge reach full height its hard to judge what needs protection .If so it goes as gardens need only plants that will thrive not try to waste time and money arguing with mother nature . Therefore this blog deals with only survivors .

Over some decades I have come to see scent is not always so vital . What thrills me is the plant itself. That male strength in structure .The cutting swords of thorns .Then the gentle silks of so heavenly the female .Scent also illustrates my meaning in truth the rose flower is everything sweet lady must be.

I do not have Hybrid Tea roses in my gardens so we can move on with what my choice became. Madame Legrass de Sant Germaine is an old French rose of great garden value. Pinkish white as strawberry and vanilla ice cream .A mass of silks in every display. She graces my rose gardens coming in with old rose scent as one of top five roses for any garden with space. Flowers only once over almost 6 weeks .

The rose Fantin Latoure is a great pink mass on 1000 silky pink petals that flowers twice and arches in splendor seeing the blue skies above her in bloom one on the best sights around. Large rose but worth it.

The old Moss Rose Salet is the hardest worker in this garden .Always in flower .Good amount of moss to a point almost .She blooms all together over a large plant .Deep cerise pink and if a problem needs a bit of thinning out as so thick a patch suffers with bad air. I do this after all flowering is over then in with cutters and remove older steams .It is the only pruning old roses need .Best left if not a problem . This garden was designed for all to put on a show and relax without corsets .

My top rose must be Chapeau de Napoleon. Another crested moss Centifolia. This means many sepals many petals and by its shape before bloom appears look so exactly the hat worn by the Emperor of France we beat on the playing fields of Eaton and took it as victory at Waterloo in 1815. This rose sort of reminds us of so worthy an enemy he was . In 1827 it was bred by French officer in Paris . It, like most old roses has the sweat scent of powerful riches but flowers only once . For around a month only. I look forward to it in flower every summer with much joy. Great wide spread lax plant and hard to place in a small garden it is still a talking point in larger ones .One can train it easily into a climber with care . The second photo is this rose in full late Spring early summer bloom. Used in so many paintings of still life by great artists. First photo is John Davis climber .

Ground cover rose that flowers from May to late October without a break. New from old French rose breeders Ducher in Lyon . Called Rosier buisson Petillante de Saint Galmier .A true star of any border in sunshine .19inch high spread of some 6 feet

David Austin roses are not hardy enough here . In the main this is so but I have trialed a few with bad results .This one came through.

Hyde Hall .A lovely ever flowering deep salmon pink flowers that cover the tall wide growing mass of light green leaves. I do not cover it and it has survived well now for 3 years . Never cut it or pruned it until it reached this years height .Will next week try but all roses still in flower that will flower happily until frost ..Last summer went on until 22th October with many lovely warm days .This year we just cant tell as now is cold and wet 30th September 10.42 am

Next is John Davis climber.A Canadian tribute to an English sailor. The Morden research rose that is one of the most lovely ever bred. Spreads like a true old English rambler but flowers all year until Christmas over gazebo . Again a shade of pink I grow with blue skies clematis and white swan clematis.

On the rose trellis I have Pauls Hymalian musk rose that dies back a bit but rambles well in summer into mass of bloom . Must reach 60 feet across to Pergola and maybe next Summer will not just reach but cover it . More of late Spring flowering rose .Great for hanging solar lights on as strong branches all the way up .

I like the Alba roses too I have the great Jacobite rose Alba Maxima growing strong but young as yet in my alee to the postern gate .Now Im working on that gate, self supported though.,it would benefit from old brick columns each side .

If asked what single rose I would have in a small space garden and one I grow in a large garden too. I have to say pick Jacques Cartier as best all rounder and value for money. Ticks all points .

I grew a Hansa rose hedge of about 15 plants across rose garden border with main drive beds other side. Grow so well in clay that people comment on seeing it. 6 feet tall 4 feet wide. Deep red velvet flowers terrific scent and prolific all summer. Thorn is big and nothing gets trough it. Another great hedging rose I use is Terase Bugnet same size but pink shell like many petals other wise just as good as Hansa grows anyplace. Delight when rose hedges can be planted watered and forgotten. But once grown and in flower what pride I have in seeing it all before my gaze .

Many more roses of real worth but for now that I hope is enough for you to consider. A garden needs roses and the ones here I have given are time tested hero mix. Maybe ill try growing my own rose from cross breeding .Big long winded job it is but here have the full range of the rarest jewels outside of Empress Josephines gardens in France. It just takes imagination and learned history of old garden roses. I say to all that pass through these portals every rose has a story and of real interest many of them .Who in the past held this same plant and flower that we have in front of us now . Then the mind opens up My cat Archer who follows my progress everyplace in garden is captured on photo as she hates to be left out. From workshop through arches to gates of Edwardian garden she loves as voles and mice have no chance under her gaze .

I do so hope that you enjoyed my rose talk. Thank you for dropping by .

Yours Sir K

copyright Kevin Parr Bt 2022.

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