I will start the week with an easy post. I have some more complicated thoughts buzzing round my head but it is early Monday morning and I need more time to get these sorted. So I am taking another look at some roses I have mentioned before. The reason is that I am aware that I am guilty of treating roses a bit like a catalogue, with photos that just show the flowers. Of course the flowers are important but the plants themselves are just as important. One of the great features of modern roses is how they grow and how they resist disease and it is that that makes them useful garden plants. As ever, I will mention that these roses have never been sprayed against disease (with a few exceptions) and those featured are now six years old so I think these photos show well how good these are as garden plants.
Above is Absolutely Fabulous (‘WEKvossutono’) Rose of the Year in 2010. It is a rich, golden yellow that fades as it ages with hints of pink. The flowers have a rather flat, old fashioned look. It is lightly scented, reputedly with an aniseed scent though I can’t say I have noticed. The flowers are held in small clusters and it is an excellent bedding rose. The stems are very thorny and upright. It needs cutting back after flowering to encourage a good second flush. It can get blackspot and I have sprayed it in summer to prevent the disease but it is certainly not disease-prone. It is a great yellow rose for bedding.
Above is Joie de Vivre ( ‘KORfloci01’). It was bred by Kordes and was Rose of the Year in 2011. It is often called a patio rose because the growth is so low and compact. It has lovely dark foliage and stiff, short stems with one or several flowers. These open from rather squat, lovely buds to rather flat flowers packed with petals in a lovely strawberry pink colour, sometimes more cream than strawberry. The scent is light but this is a beautiful rose, ideal for the front of the border.
Champagne Moment (‘KORvanaber’) is another Kordes rose that was Rose of the Year in
2006. It too has flowers with a rather old-fashioned look and these are creamy white with a darker cream centre. The blooms do not have a particularly rich scent but they are freely produced in clusters. It was in the running for the rose I planted in front of the house as a long rose bed (well 12 plants) but I decided against it simply because it is rather tall at 1.5m and it has long, arching stems. This is not a problem but simply means it is best for the centre or back of a border rather than the front. It is very healthy though it may get mildew later in the season.
If I was pushed to recommend a rose, and of course the answer would vary according to what day it was, my answer may well be You’re Beautiful (‘FRYracy’) introduced by Fryers and it was Rose of the Year in 2013. It has the most wonderful sugar pink flowers, with a decent scent and these are carried in clusters. It flowers early and repeats with great vigour. It is not very thorny so is good for cutting even though the flowers do not have many petals. The new growth is red-flushed and it is compact. It is miles better than the similar and earlier Tickled Pink which is much taller and rangier and has less attractive flowers.
Just to show how the lovely Twice in a Blue Moon (TAN96138) looks in the garden. Being a true Hybrid Tea, the growth is very upright and it does not make quite the show of the others in this post. However, just look at those stems – perfect for cutting – and there are very few thorns. No disease either!