‘The Pilgrim’ rose hybridized by David Austin and introduced in 1987 is
not named after the pilgrims in Massachusetts but the pilgrim in Chaucer’s
Canterbury Tales. Parentage is ‘Graham
Thomas’ x ‘Yellow Button’. It grows 4 ft tall x 5 ft wide and up to 10 ft
as a climber. Its perfectly formed blooms are quite large, shallowly cupped, rosette-shaped
and up to 170 petals. The beautiful yellow color pales towards the edges of the
blooms, giving a charming softness that is rare among yellow roses. The soft
green foliage complements the soft yellow blooms. It has a delicious medium to
strong Tea and myrrh fragrance. The bush is quite healthy and repeats very
In warmer areas, it is a good idea to do summer pruning to keep the plant
upright and bushy. It is superb as a climber, one of the best English Rose
climbers. It will quickly reach some height and still produce flowers and
leaves lower down on the plant which is rare among climbers.
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dinner parties much more special. (Not just on Thanksgiving).
exhibition quality pink blend Hybrid Tea is a winner of the All-America Rose
Selections Award in 1994, Portland Best Rose in 1998 and the Gamble Fragrance
Award in 2003. It is white with raspberry pink edges and is both excellent on
the show table and garden display. It is a medium, moderately thorny, bushy
plant with an upright habit, semi-glossy dark green leaves on long stems and
produces lots of large high-centered blooms 4 to 6 inches across. It grows 3 to
5 ft tall and 2 to 3 ft across. Blooms come on single stem or in clusters of
three or four. Blooms are double (30 to 40 petals) and tend to get larger in
Secret is a
generous performer giving blooms from late spring to early summer and repeats
through to fall. It can be used in beds and borders and if you need lots of
fragrant blooms to share with others, plant Secret in the cutting garden in
threes so the plants look bushier. It has a strong, spicy fragrance. It is
winter hardy and has good disease resistance. Who says modern hybrid tea does
not have any fragrance? Secret can perfume a room with just one bloom.
Tip of the Day – Be around
positive people who do positive things.
‘Pristine’ has the delicate look of porcelain, you’ll be tempted to feel the petals to see if it is real. The bloom is high-centered, double (30-35 petals), large – six inches across and somewhat ruffled. Most often, it comes singly on a long, thick stem although quite thorny, with large, dark green glossy leaves. It is a very vigorous plant and very disease resistant. It can be used for cut flower or for garden display. It has gathered enough trophies to be a favorite among exhibitors.
bud opened white to creamy petals blushed with light to medium pink on the edge
of the petals and displaying orange-yellow stamens in the center. Fragrance is
light. Habit is quite tall and spreading, from 4 to 7 ft. tall and 3 to 6 ft.
wide. It tends to spread its canes sideways so prune it to inward-facing buds
to discourage sprawling. It blooms continuously throughout the season. The best
location for this rose is in the back of the border. Good companion plants are
pink flowered plants and some blue stately delphiniums. For regions with harsh
winter, it requires winter protection.
Tip of the
Day – Keep your desk and work area neat and clean.
Eyeconic™ Shrub Rose is another new breeding breakthrough in the rose world introduced by the Conard-Pyle Co/Star Roses. After many years of attempting to cross modern roses with Hulthemias, (a species-type roses originating in ancient Persia), rose breeder Jim Sproul finally succeeded. The Hulthemias are a once-blooming species with a characteristic red blotch. The Eyeconics™ capture the blotch, but everything else about these roses is modern, from their rebloom to their pleasing small, shrub-like habit to their disease resistance. The bushy 3 to 4-1/2 foot plants are filled with dark green, very glossy foliage that sets off the 2- to 3-inch, ruffled, non-fragrant blooms.
Eyeconic™ Pink Lemonade is light pink to melon rose with a darker red ring surrounding the inside of the petal that is typical of the Hulthemia hybrids. The bud form is small, ovoid open melon-pink with a red ring maturing to shell pink with the red turning to a purplish eye. The medium size bloom is cuplike with an average of 8-10 petals, 3 ½ inches in diameter. The plant is prolific and blooms continuously for months with blooms in cluster of five blooms per stem with dark green, very glossy foliage. It is a breakthrough rose, coming from a breeder, Jim Sproul who has been working more than 20 years on Hulthemia hybrids.
Eyeconic Pink Lemonade has an excellent habit and self-cleaning. The plant is compact, bushy, approximately 3 ft. tall by 3 ft. wide. This ultra-vigorous shrub is a carefree addition to any garden. Unhappily, there is no fragrance.
Tip of the day: – Laugh a lot. Laughter is the best medicine.
For rose lovers who want the charm and fragrance of the Old Garden Roses with their large variety of flower forms but longer blooming period, there are large selections now available. First, there was David Austin’s English Roses, then other growers started producing roses with the Old Garden Rose characteristics. One of them is the Meilland Company of France (developer of the famous Meidiland family of Landscape Roses. Alain Meilland of the legendary French rose company, the Meilland Company that boasts six generations of family ownership and hybridizer of the Romantica Roses received the Great Rosarians of the World award for 2012.
After David Austin’s success with the English Roses, the House of Meilland followed suit with a series of garden roses blending the best qualities of Heirlooms with modern Floribundas and Hybrid Teas. They call this group of rose Romantica Roses. Many of these varieties were bred in the South of France by Meilland International. These new French Roses represent an important expansion of the English Rose style, with astonishing new varieties and versatility that take the concept pioneered by David Austin to an entirely new level from romantic antique to modern Hybrid Teas, from climbers to shrubs with extensive color ranges, nostalgic pastels to vivid hues, wide selection of attractive plant forms, excellent disease resistance, outstanding foliage typical of the Meilland breeding line, old-fashioned fragrance and dependable repeat flowering habit for all seasons color. These characteristics appeal to both the novice as well as the advanced gardener. Their improved disease resistance and garden performance make them a wonderful addition to the modern landscape.
Here is a list of Romantica Roses that you can incorporate in your garden:
Bolero – F – White – 2004
Dee-lish -HT – Medium Pink – 2011
Francois Rabelais – F – Medium Red – 1998
Guy de Maupassant – F – Medium Pink – 1996
Jean Giono – HT – Yellow Blend – 1998
Michelangelo – HT – Medium Yellow – 1997
Peter Mayle – HT – Deep Pink – 2003
Polka – LCl – Apricot Blend – 1996
Rouge Royal – HT – Red Blend – 2001
Traviata – HT – Dark Red – 1998
White Eden – LCl – White – 2004
Yves Piaget – HT – Medium Pink – 1985
Note: F (Floribunda), HT (Hybrid Tea), LCl (Large-Flowered Climber)
Tip of the Day – When someone is telling you about an important event that happened to them, don’t try to top them with your own story. Let them have the stage.
‘Gemini’ is always a winner. It won the 2005 Members’ Choice Award from the American Rose Society. It also won the AARS 2000 award. It has all the qualities that exhibitors love – high-centered large blooms, 5”-7” in diameter, double (17-25 petals), and elegantly formed. It has a lighter tint in the spring and gets darker hue as it progresses through the season. The light pink color with a darker hue on the edges is so beautiful. No wonder it always captures a place at the Court of Honor of a Rose Show.
Gemini produces plenty of exhibition type blooms on a tall, bushy plant (4-6 ft high x 3 ft wide). Most often, blooms come singly on a long, thick stems with large, deep green glossy foliage. This rose looks great in the garden and in a vase. It also lasts a long time in a vase. If you have one space in your garden, try to get Gemini. It will capture your heart as it does most judges at the Rose Show.
Tip of the Day: Set short term and long term goals.
Conard Pyle, the introducer of Knock Out Roses also introduced the climbing rose collection of William Radler, the hybridizer of the Knock Out Family of roses. Just like the Knock Out Roses, the climbing roses are also disease resistant. One of these climbing roses is Winner’s Circle™.
This new climber from the breeder of ‘Knock Out’ is sure to become a favorite. Winner’s Circle™ is a bright red climber and can reach a height up to 12 ft. with 4 ft. wide spread. Its blooms average 3.75”, fire-engine red but no fragrance. They are non-fading and can take the heat. It is winter hardy to zone 5. Winner’s Circle™ is floriferous, a vigorous climber with semi-glossy, dark green foliage. Disease resistance is excellent. In the fall the foliage turns deep burgundy red and the plants is covered with bright orange hips.
Parentage – (‘Red Planet’ x ‘Pharaoh’), 1982
Hybridizer – Sam McGredy, New Zealand
Introducer – Armstrong Nursery, Ontario, California
Olympiad was the official rose of the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. It was also the winner of the All America Rose Selection Award in 1984 and the Gold Medal Portland Award in 1985. Olympiad is one of the best red hybrid teas as a bedding rose for gardeners and an excellent source for cut flower. The blooms come usually singly on long stems. Olympiad has good repeat throughout the season. The long pointed buds unfurl to double (35 to 40 petals), large (4 – 5 inches across), high-centered brilliant clear red flowers with a mild fragrance. Very thorny stems bear medium green, semi-glossy foliage with medium red new growth.
Olympiad is a tall (4 to 6 ft with a spread of 3 to 4 ft.) upright, compact rose plant. Disease resistance is generally good but if you have a problem with black spot in your area, it is advisable to take preventive measures. If only Olympiad had a strong fragrance, it could be a perfect rose.
Tip of the Day – Maintain a good posture. Enter a room with poise and confidence.
Until next time. Stop and smell the roses.
Jubilee Celebration was named in commemoration of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden Jubilee. It has lovely rich pink blooms with tints of gold on the underside of the petals. The blooms are large, pleasantly cupped above an attractive glossy foliage and blooms continuously. The rose is very healthy, vigorous, 4 ft. x 4 ft. building up into a fine shrub.
The scent of the young flower is almost pure lemon zest, later becoming a delicious, fruity rose fragrance with hints of fresh lemon and raspberry. It is an excellent rose throughout the US including the challenging hot and humid climate of the south east. Winner of the fragrance prize and people’s choice in Glasgow, Scotland.
I planted my one plant in a raised bed. It gets plenty of morning sun and shade in the afternoon and seems to be happy where it is.
Tip of the day – Commit yourself to constant self-improvement.
Eyeconic™ Lemonade is bright sunny yellow rose on the outside with a ring ranging in brilliant deep pink to red eye inside of the petal. Eyeconic™Lemonade has excellent plant habit, very bushy and slightly larger in size than Eyeconic™ Pink Lemonade. It grows about 4 ½ ft. height and 4 ½ ft. wide.
Eyeconic™ Lemonade is ultra-vigorous, blooming heavily over 3 seasons with blooms in clusters of 3 to 5 blooms per stem complemented with dark green, very glossy foliage. The bud is of medium size, pointed and bright yellow developing into a self-cleaning 4-inch cup-shaped bloom with an average of 10-12 petals. It has a great flower power, blooming continuously with non- fading yellow blooms much stronger than most other yellow on the market. It has a very slight fragrance.
Eyeconic™Lemonade is a breakthrough hybrid hulthemia rose, coming from Jim Sproul, a breeder who has been working more than 15 years on Hulthemia hybrids. Eyeconics™ roses are perpetually blooming, self-cleaning, highly disease-resistant roses with “eyes”. The pioneering efforts of Harkness and other rosarians have resulted in the creation of the hybrid hulthemia by breeding the beautiful species Hulthemia persica with garden roses. Closely resembling a wild rose (to which it is almost certainly related), Hulthemia persica has a dark red spot at the base of each petal, and it is this spot that rose breeders wanted to hybridize.
Tip of the Day – Get a good night’s sleep. A lack of good sleep can contribute to obesity, injuries, depression and chronic diseases.
Simplicity with its reflection in a puddle on the street.
Simplicity is a semi-double medium pink floribunda with 18 to 24 petals hybridized by Bill Warriner and introduced by Jackson & Perkins in 1979. Originally Jackson & Perkins sold them in lots of ten as a “living fence”.
It is an excellent landscape rose and is widely considered the first-ever hedge rose. Rosarians love them because they are very healthy and generous on blooms. However, there is very light or no fragrance at all. Its growth is 3-5 ft tall and 2-3 ft wide, vigorous, disease-resistant and winter hardy plant with medium green, semi-glossy foliage. Bloom size is 3”-4” and it blooms well in all climates.
Here are the various Simplicity roses in the market today. They are excellent plants for hedges.
Introduced in 1979 – Pink Simplicity (pictured above)
Introduced in 1991 – White Simplicity (Photo courtesy of J&P)
Introduced in 1998 – Yellow Simplicity (Photo courtesy of J&P)
Introduced in 2007 – Fragrant Lavender Simplicity (Photo courtesy of J&P)
Introduced in 2011 – Double Red Simplicity (Photo courtesy of J&P)
Tip of the Day – Maintain a healthy weight to help you prevent or control medical conditions such as hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, gall stones and breathing problems.
Constance Spry, introduced in 1961, is one of the first English Roses hybridized by David Austin and its success contributed to the founding of the English Roses. David Austin Roses is a flower arranger’s dream. They can be used to make wonderful floral arrangements either on their own or with other plant materials. With its voluptuous blossoms and dainty habit, you can duplicate the beauty and charm of an Old Dutch floral painting.
Photo Credit – David Austin Roses
Constance Spry can grow to a height of 6-12 ft. with a width of 6-8 ft. or 10 to 18 ft. as a climber. Bloom size is 3” with a petal count of 80+. It has a lovely pink color and very fragrant. The only drawback is it only flowers once in the spring but it blooms profusely.
Who is Constance Spry?
Constance Spry is the mother of modern floral design. She would have loved to use David Austin Roses for her floral arrangements. After World War 1, she changed the formal, rigid composition of floral design with unconventional pastoral compositions; flowers arranged asymmetrically with assorted shapes of foliage in various types of containers. She used all kinds of wildflowers, grasses, pods or practically anything the Victorian ladies shunned. Her style was full of drama and a refreshing reprieve from the more staid, stiff floral design of her contemporaries.
Photo Credit – Pinterest
Connie, as she was known to her friends, was born in Derby, England, in 1886 and raised in Ireland. She found refuge from her domineering mother in the gardens of her childhood, where she began to take note of what would become her favorites: old garden roses, lilac, mock orange, laurel, buddleia, and evening primrose, as well as grasses, weeds, and other typically overlooked plants and materials.
Though flowers and gardening would be her lifelong passions, under her father’s direction she began her early professional life as an educator and social reformer. Traveling by horse-drawn wagon through the Irish countryside, she became a proponent of healthy living, educating housewives on the benefits of fresh air and nutritious food as part of a “War on Consumption” campaign. After a disappointing marriage to a coal mine manager, she took her only son back to England to begin life anew. It was there she met and fell in love with Shav Spry, a colonial civil servant who would be her lifelong companion.
It wasn’t until the age of 41, that Spry’s amateur talents as a floral designer were noticed by an influential lunch companion, leading her to Norman Wilkinson, a theater designer whose encouragement would launch her meteoric design career. With a commission to do flowers for cinemas and a perfume shop, Spry took her unorthodox visions of gathered materials and artful references out of the homes of friends and into the public eye, where she was praised for displays that in an incredibly modern twist included leaves, berries, seed pods, wild clematis, and golden hops mixed with exotic orchids. Her fate was sealed.
Suddenly this middle-aged woman found herself thrust into the social scene, befriending legendary decorator and fellow entrepreneur Syrie Maugham and an exuberant crowd of theatrical personalities and social luminaries. She became the florist of choice to London high society organizing the flowers for royal weddings. She designed the flowers for the Queen’s wedding and Coronation. Her books on flower arranging made her a household name.
Besides being an influential floral artist, Constance Spry is the founder of the Cordon Bleu cooking school and an author of a bestselling cookbook bearing her name.
Tip of the Day – Turn your passions and interests into a career.