Is that it? Rosa chinensis ‘Viridiflora’

Everyone can recognise a rose, but here is one that most people would walk past and not even notice. Unlike most roses it has no fragrance and even lacks petals. Yet I am very pleased to have it in the garden. I admires its freakishness even though when I show it in all its glory,  the retort is usually ‘Is that it?’

It is believed that this rose is a sport of the China ‘Old Blush’ and arose before 1743 and was introduced to cultivation by Bembridge and Harrison, in the UK, in 1856. You can imagine how fortuitous the timing was because the Victorians with their love of evergreen, ferns and curiosities must have adored this. I can imagine Miss Havisham holding a bunch of these.

Unlike most roses, this rose has no petals and instead there are multiple rows of sepals, the green leafy structures that protect flowers in bud. This is called phyllody and it is not actually that rare in roses. Many ‘old’ roses have green button centres where there are leafy structures where there should be petals or stamens.

If you like it enough to grow it, this is an easy rose to please, reaching about 1m high and across. Like all Chinas it is not the hardiest of roses but OK in most UK and Irish conditions. It prefers a sunny, warm spot. The flowers start the same green as the leaves, slightly paler on the reverse of the sepals and they develop reddish bronze colouring as they age. The flowers last for weeks, which is a blessing if you cut them for the house or a disappointment if you think they are ugly.

Geoff’s rating

7/10

Garden rating

3/10

 

 

 

 

, ,

6 Comments on “Is that it? Rosa chinensis ‘Viridiflora’”

  1. Chloris
    August 26, 2019 at 8:48 am #

    It’s a weird rose but pretty in flower arrangements.

  2. derrickjknight
    August 26, 2019 at 9:58 am #

    I like the Miss Havisham connection

    • thebikinggardener
      August 26, 2019 at 7:08 pm #

      Thank you – just came into my mind, as so many weird thoughts do

  3. thelonggardenpath
    August 27, 2019 at 7:28 pm #

    No perfume? Jury’s out ! 🤔

  4. tonytomeo
    August 30, 2019 at 4:53 am #

    There zinnias that bloom like this. I don’t understand the allure.

Leave a Reply to Chloris Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Sweetgum and Pines

gardening in the North Carolina piedmont

Ravenscourt Gardens

Learning life's lessons in the garden!

RMW: the blog

Roslyn's photography, art, cats, exploring, writing, life

An Irish Gardener

Gardening in Ireland, our own garden, gardens visited and book reviews

AltroVerde

un altro blog sul giardinaggio...

vegetablurb

four decades of organic vegetable gardening and barely a clue

The Long Garden Path

A walk round the Estate!

Botanical Journey from the South

Photographic Journals from the South

Flowery Prose

Welcome to Flowery Prose! Growing words about writing, gardening, and outdoors pursuits in Alberta, Canada.

ontheedgegardening

Gardening on the edge of a cliff

Uprooted Magnolia

I'm Leah, a freelance Photographer born and raised in Macon, GA, USA. I spent 8 years in the wild west and this is my photo journal on life, love, and the spirit of Wyoming. Welcome to Uprooted Magnolia.

Interesting Literature

A Library of Literary Interestingness

Garden Variety

A Gardening, Outdoor Lifestyle and Organic Food & Drink Blog

For the Love of Iris

Articles, Tips and Notes from Schreiner's Iris Gardens

One Bean Row

Words and pictures from an Irish garden by Jane Powers

Plant Heritage

We are working to conserve the nations garden plants for people to use and enjoy today and tomorrow

HERITAGE IRISES

An English experience of gardening in Ireland - and back in the UK

%d bloggers like this: