Noisettes are one of my favourite types of rose, so I have dedicated a special post to them, all of their own! They originated at a similar time to the Portlands, Bourbons and Teas, in fact some of them are referred to as Tea-Noisettes, due to the crossing of Blush Noisette and Yellow Teas to produce the yellow forms of Noisette roses like my signature rose Desprez à Fleurs Jaunes.Noisettes originated in America, when John Champney, a rice grower from Charleston, South Carolina, crossed a China rose, Parson’s Pink, which he had been given by friend and neighbour, Philippe Noisette, with the Musk Rose, R. moschata, to produce the very first Noisette rose, Champney’s Pink Cluster 1802, which is still with us today (photo below). The Musk rose parent gave the Noisettes their broad shrubby habit and scented large clusters, while the China rose parent contributed the pink colouring, larger flowers and continuous flowering pattern.Champney gave the resultant seedlings as a thank you gift to Philippe, who made further crosses, sending both seeds and plants to his brother Louis in Paris. Louis named the first seedling ‘Rosier de Philippe Noisette’, which was shortened to ‘Noisette’ or ‘Blush Noisette’, also still available commercially. Redouté painted Blush Noisette under the name of R. noisettiana in 1821. Blush Noisette was later crossed with Park’s Yellow China to produce the yellow Noisettes. A cross between the early Noisettes (Musk X China) with Teas produced the Tea-Noisettes. The rose below is Desprez à Fleurs Jaunes at Werribee. Noisettes are vigorous, free growing climbers, with clusters of flowers, which bloom later than the Bourbons, with many of them repeat or continuous flowering for the whole Summer. They provided a new range of colour, especially yellow, to the climbing and rambling roses of the day. The flowers have the true old rose form- a rosette formation with silky petals and good fragrance.
While they have a reputation for tenderness during the cold Winters of Northern Europe, they will still perform well on a sheltered warm wall, but here in Australia, they thrive like the Tea roses. They require little pruning except for the removal of dead or undesired canes and deadheading to encourage more blooms in the Autumn. Here are some of my favourites:
Champney’s Pink Cluster Champney, USA 1802
While I have never grown this particular rose, I am describing it here because it was the first Noisette. It grows to 4.5 metres high and 2.5 metres wide, is disease-free, has light green foliage and large, loosely formed clusters of small, blush-pink double flowers in Summer.
Aimée Vibert (also called Bouquet de la Mariée or Nivea) Vibert, France, 1828
A cross between Champney’s Pink Cluster and the Evergreen Rose R. sempervirens, the latter passing on its plentiful long graceful, rich green foliage. It was named after Vibert’s daughter Aimée and was one of the first perpetual-flowered climbing roses. Climbing vigorously to a height of 4.5 metres, it bears small to medium open sprays of pink buds and small pure white double 5 cm rosette flowers with gold stamens and a musky fragrance. It repeat-flowers like its Noisette parent from early in the season right through into the Autumn. It has healthy dark green semi-evergreen leaves and almost thornless stems. My plant, grown from a cutting from our old garden, is still in a pot awaiting the construction of the chook shed, over which it will grow, so I have included a link: https://www.classicroses.co.uk/roses/aimee-vibert-climbing-rose.html.
Lamarque Maréchal, France, 1830
A Tea-Noisette, bred from a cross between Blush Noisette and Park’s Yellow China, this rose reaches 3 metres in England, but much more in warmer climates. We are growing it up the front wall of our house and already, after being planted as a small bare-rooted specimen in June 2015, and then dug up and rotated 90 degrees, so it would grow correctly against the wall (instead of away!), it has reached 3.6 metres high. It has large flat and quartered rosettes of pale lemon-cream with a superb fresh lemony fragrance. Lamarque also has copious light green foliage and few thorns.Madame Alfred Carrière Schwartz, France, 1879
Grown over our front entrance pergola, both in our old Armidale garden (along with Albertine) and our new garden here in Candelo, this rose is very much a favourite for its toughness, continuous flowering and small clusters of beautiful 10 cm large, globular, double, creamy-white blooms with a touch of pink and a strong Tea rose fragrance. It can be grown on a south-facing wall (coldest aspect in Australia) and still blooms reliably. It will grow up to 6 metres in height and has few thorns.Alister Stella Gray (also known as Golden Rambler) AH Gray, but introduced by George Paul in 1894
I am growing this lovely rose over an arch opposite Reve d’Or next to the cumquat trees. Both are key components of my yellow garden! Alister Stella Gray bears small sprays of small scrolled yolk-yellow buds, which open out flat into double quartered gold flowers, which fade to a creamy-white with age. They have a Tea rose scent. It can be grown as a climber or a large arching shrub, with few thorns and dark green foliage, reaching 4.5 metres on a wall. Rêve d’Or (Golden Chain) Ducher France 1869
A seedling of Tea-Noisette, Madame Schultz, itself a seedling of Lamarque, I fell in love with this rose on our rose trip to Renmark, where I saw it in the garden of Alan and Fleur Carthew.
It’s a very generous rose and has flowered continuously at the base of our front steps, where it will grace an entrance arch, once we have built it! The fragrant blooms are shapely double buff-yellow with pink shadings, fading with age. It has strong growth and dark green foliage.Desprez à Fleurs Jaunes (Jaune Desprez) Desprez France 1835
Another cross between Blush Noisette and Park’s Yellow (like Lamarque) and one of my favourite Tea-Noisettes, which I grew next to the front trellis entrance on the verandah of our old home in Armidale and whose blooms are featured in my header display to this blog. It is a very vigorous and hardy rose, which will reach 6 metres on a warm wall, and is never without a flower. Its medium-sized warm yellow-peach double blooms open flat and quartered with a strong fruity fragrance, many silky petals and a button eye. The colours are more intense in Autumn with the cooler weather.Crépuscule Dubreuil France 1904
A beautiful rose with rich apricot-gold loose blooms, whose colour varies from apricot to butterscotch and buff with the soil and the season (colours being more intense in cooler weather), fading to a soft yellow with age. Its prolific continuous display, bronze coloured young foliage, few thorns and strong sweet musky fragrance make it a favourite with many people. We grew it on the front verandah railing (below) and the vegetable trellis (above) in our old garden. Walter Duncan grows it on the back of his guest cottage at Heritage Garden (photo below) and it forms an impressive display in full bloom over 100 metres of fencing at the Flemington Racecourse. It will reach 2.5 metres tall and prefers warmer Mediterranean type climates.Céline Forestier Trouillard France 1842
I first saw this lovely rose growing on the rough sandstone wall of Walter Duncan’s Heritage Garden cottage during our 2014 Spring rose holiday.It grows to a height of 2.5 to 3 metres and has fully double, 6 to 8 cm large, rounded, silky, pale blooms of a pale yellow-buff with touches of pink, opening quartered with a button eye and having a moderate Tea rose fragrance. They are borne singly or in small clusters. It has profuse light green foliage and darkish stems.
Here are some more Noisettes- would I had room to grow them all! However, you can get to appreciate them on a visit to the Victoria State Rose Garden at Werribee Park.
Bouquet d’Or Ducher France 1872
A seedling of Gloire de Dijon (itself a cross between a Tea rose and the Bourbon rose, Souvenir de la Malmaison, from which it inherited its tendency to ball in wet weather) and one of the Dijon Teas, it has large, full-petalled, double, quartered or muddled coppery-salmon blooms, which are yellow at the centre and have a slight scent. Hardy and vigorous, it grows to a height of 3 metres.Cloth of Gold (Chromatella) Coquereau France 1843
A seedling of Lamarque and slightly tender in colder climates like its parent. Reaching 3.5 metres high, it has double soft sulphur-yellow fragrant blooms, which deepen towards the centre and copious light green foliage.Maréchal Niel Pradel France 1864
A seedling of Cloth of Gold, it was highly prized in the late 19th century for its large pointed buds of deep yellow, a colour rarely seen until Pernet-Ducher introduced the genes of R. foetida into the Hybrid Teas at the turn of the 20th century. It was however very cold-sensitive, so was grown predominantly in glasshouses, where it could reach 4.5 metres. It has dark coppery-green foliage and the blooms are very fragrant. The photo below taken at Werribee mainly shows older blooms, though there are a few younger golden flowers towards the right of the bush.Next week, my post is devoted to Walter Duncan and his wonderful rose garden, the Heritage Garden, at Clare, which we were fortunate enough to have visited in 2014.