The Romance of Hybrid Musks

Hybrid Musks were developed in the first quarter of the 20th Century, so well after 1867. Consequently, they are not considered to be Old Roses, but rather Classic Roses with so many advantages that they are still very popular today.

The Hybrid Musk story starts with a German rose hybridizer, Peter Lambert, who bred a Multiflora Rambler, Aglaia, also called Yellow Rambler, in 1896 from a cross between R. multiflora and a Noisette, Rêve d’Or. Aglaia has vigorous, upright growth, 2.5 metres up to 5 metres tall and 1.8 metres wide; almost thornless stems; rich light green foliage with bronze tints when young; and small, semi-double, strongly fragrant, pale primrose yellow blooms, fading white, in Summer. Aglaia was one of the three daughters of Greek God, Zeus, and Eurynome and represented beauty. You can see a photo of this rose at: http://www.davidaustinroses.com/eu/aglaia.

In 1904, Lambert released a self-seedling of Aglaia, Trier, a Hybrid Multiflora and the very first Hybrid Musk rose. Trier is a repeat-flowering, upright shrub or small climber, 2.5 metres tall and 1.8 metres wide, with small foliage and small sprays of small, nearly single, fragrant white flowers, tinged with cream and pink. See: http://www.davidaustinroses.com/eu/trier.

The story then transfers to Reverend Joseph Pemberton (1852-1926) of Essex, England, who was an Anglican clergyman, but also a keen lifelong rosarian. He had an early interest in growing and showing roses, especially the then-popular Hybrid Perpetuals, and was an early member of the National Rose Society, of which he was President in 1911. On his retirement, he started to breed roses, crossing Noisettes, Polyanthas and especially Trier with Hybrid Teas, Teas and Noisettes to produce a new type of rose, the Hybrid Musks.

These new roses were long flowering, highly floriferous shrubs with clusters of fragrant flowers. His first Hybrid Musks were Daphne 1912 and  Danaë and Moonlight, both released in 1913. He established the Pemberton Nursery at Romford, where he grew 35 000 to 40 000 roses for sale annually. He released 25 new roses between 1912 and 1926, with a further ten selected from his seedlings and released by his sister, Florence, after his death.

During the 1930s, his assistants, John (Jack) and Ann Bentall, continued his work, releasing several new Hybrid Musks, including Autumn Delight 1933, Ballerina 1937 and Buff Beauty 1939, released after John’s death by his widow. For more about Reverend Pemberton,  see: http://www.pembertonroses.org.uk/pemberton-family-history and http://www.pembertonroses.org.uk/historical-events.

BlogHybridMusksReszd2016-11-06 13.08.16Description

Graceful spreading shrubs, which can be trained as low climbers, pillars and cascading feature roses. BlogHybridMusksReszd20%IMG_9277They are quite large shrubs, most at least 1.5 metres to 1.8 metres tall and wide, so they require room.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-27 13.15.17Very vigorous and tough, they can withstand a wide range of soil conditions, temperature and sun. They tolerate partial shade better than most roses and can be grown on south-facing walls (Australia). They have excellent disease-resistance. The photo above is Buff Beauty at the Mt Lofty Botanical Garden, Adelaide Hills, South Australia, while the photo below is Autumn Delight.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-19 13.35.00They have long graceful canes, some of which are almost thornless, with large, smooth, shiny, dark green , healthy foliage. Cornelia is the rose in the photo below.BlogHybridMusksReszd2016-10-29 12.06.39Very floriferous, they bloom abundantly and rapidly in Summer and Autumn and are reliable repeat-bloomers, some producing flowers continuously. Because so many flowers are often open at the same time, their pleasing fragrance fills the air for some distance. The scent from Cornelia is superb!BlogHybridMusksReszd2016-11-05 18.47.34They have huge clusters of small to medium, soft pastel flowers in white, yellow, pink, peach and apricot, though there are a few medium reds like Will Scarlet and Robin Hood. The photo below is Kathleen.BlogHybridMusksReszd2016-11-06 13.08.54Requirements

Hybrid Musks need plenty of space and good cultivation and adequate manuring to reach their full potential. Because they repeat-flower, pruning is important to encourage new growth, prevent the shrub from becoming leggy and unkempt, and to extend its life. Prune the strong main shoots back by one third in Winter, as well as old weak wood, especially in the centre of the bush. Deadhead during the Summer to encourage new flowers. The photo below is of Penelope.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-27 13.17.05Varieties

Prosperity Pemberton UK 1919

A cross between a Polyantha, Marie-Jeanne, and a Tea rose, Perle des Jardins, I grew this rose in my old Armidale garden as part of a hedge.

Tall bushy upright growth like its Tea parent and can be grown as a climber.  Up to 2 metres tall and 1.5 metres wide.

Strong arching shoots, which bend due to the weight of the blooms.

Shiny dark green foliage.

Large even clusters of small double fragrant creamy white blooms, flushed with blush pink at first, then fading to an ivory white, with a lemon tinge in the centre with age.BlogHybridMusksReszd50%Image (181)Kathleen Pemberton UK 1922

A cross between Hybrid Musk Daphne and Perle des Jeannes, I tried growing this rose as part of my Hybrid Musk hedge, but it wasn’t a healthy specimen, so I replaced it. It is still alive, but sickly, so I will wait to see if it recovers next Spring before deciding its fate!BlogHybridMusksReszd2016-11-06 13.09.01Very vigorous (2.4 metres tall and 1.2 metres wide) with greyish green stems; Sparse dark green foliage;BlogHybridMusksReszd20%IMG_9318 And small to medium, fragrant, single, pale pink blooms with deeper shadings like apple blossom.BlogHybridMusksReszd2514-11-26 15.25.03Bloomfield Dainty Thomas USA 1924

A cross between Hybrid Musk, Danaë, and Bloomfield Abundance. The photo below was taken at Werribee Park and features Bloomfield Dainty in the foreground.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-19 13.33.19

Spreading arching shrub 2.5 metres tall and 1.2 metres wide.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-19 13.33.24Long pointed orange buds open to single yellow saucers with 5 petals, a large central boss of gold stamens and a sweet musky fragrance. The main Spring flush is followed by a lesser display in Summer and Autumn.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-19 13.33.29Penelope Pemberton UK 1924

One of the most reliable and popular Hybrid Musks, this rose is a cross between Trier and Hybrid Tea, Ophelia.bloghxroses20reszd2016-11-06-13-09-14 This would have to almost be my favourite Hybrid Musk and it thrived both in my old Armidale garden and my new Candelo hedge.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_0813Fully branching and spreading habit, 1.8 metres tall and 1.5 metres across, it can be grown as a climber or a low spreading shrub.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-27 13.16.20 The long canes bear large trusses of highly fragrant, semi-double, medium, frilly edged blush pink to peach blossoms, which open from coppery, salmon tinted buds, then fade to a creamy-white.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-27 13.16.56 The flowers reveal centres of gold stamens as they open.BlogHybridMusksReszd50%Image (192) Continuously blooming, they set coral pink hips, which should be deadheaded to encourage more blooms.BlogHybridMusksReszd2017-05-12 11.54.34Cornelia Pemberton UK 1925 Unknown parentage

Vigorous shrub, 1.5 metres high and 1.8 metres wide, with dark brown shoots;BlogHybridMusksReszd2016-11-03 10.04.21 Small bronze foliage when young;BlogHybridMusksReszd20%IMG_1982 And large clusters of small , highly fragrant, pink and peach, fully double, rosette blooms with 3 to 4 layers of petals and a central boss of gold stamens.BlogHybridMusksReszd2016-11-03 10.03.16 Continuously blooming, the Autumn flush is particularly good, with large sprays of deeper pink flowers produced on strong new stems from the base of the plant.BlogHybridMusksReszd20%IMG_1979 I am growing this rose on one side of the chook arch opposite Tea rose, Sombreuil.BlogHybridMusksReszd2016-11-10 09.19.26

Felicia Pemberton UK 1928

Released by his sister Florence after his death, this rose is another cross between Trier and Hybrid Tea, Ophelia.BlogHybridMusksReszd50%Image (179)A strong reliable broad shapely branching shrub, 1.5 metres tall and 2.7 metres wide, which makes a good hedge. The large, crisp, dark green leaves have crinkled edges and are more like those of Hybrid Teas than many Hybrid Musks.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-19 13.35.46 I am growing this rose under the apple tree, but it has much competition both from the latter, as well as the roots and shade of the White Mulberry and Cottonwood Poplar!BlogHybridMusksReszd50%Image (231)Large sprays of small, informal, muddled, strongly fragrant, rich pink flowers with salmon shadings open from pointed apricot pink buds and fade to blush pink. Very floriferous, it blooms freely from Summer to Autumn.BlogHybridMusksReszd20%IMG_9316

Francesca Pemberton UK 1928

Another seedling released after his death, this rose is a cross between Hybrid Musk, Danaë, and Sunburst.

Large graceful shrub, 1.8 metres tall and wide, it has broad arching growth; Smooth dark stems and is well-foliated with long dark green glossy leaves with pointed ends.BlogHybridMusksReszd2514-11-26 15.24.19Well spaced sprays of large semi-double apricot yellow blooms, with a strong Tea scent, open from long, slim, pointed, elegant buds and fade to a pale yellow. The Autumn blooms are a deeper yellow.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-19 13.34.08Autumn Delight Bentall UK 1933 Unknown parentage

Upright bushy shrub, 1.2 metres tall and wide, with almost thornless stems; Dark green leathery foliage;BlogHybridMusksReszd2514-11-26 15.24.34 And large trusses of semi-double, soft buff yellow, continuous blooms, opening from shapely deep yellow buds.BlogHybridMusksReszd20%IMG_9649 This rose graces the far end of the white Hybrid Musk hedge behind the raspberry patch.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-19 13.34.44Buff Beauty Bentall UK 1939

The last of the Pemberton-Bentall Hybrid Musks, this rose is a cross between a Noisette, William Allen Richardson, and an unknown rose.

A vigorous, well-balanced, arching shrub, 1.8 metres tall and 1.5 metres wide, it can be grown as a small climber in warm climates. It was a very large shrub in my Armidale garden.BlogHybridMusksReszd2014-10-27 13.17.27Smooth stems tinted brown and large thick dark green leaves.BlogHybridMusksReszd50%Image (170)A reliable continuous flowerer, it has small to large clusters of medium, semi-double to double, rich apricot-yellow blooms with a strong Tea fragrance. The colour varies with the weather and the soil from apricot to buff yellow and even primrose.BlogHybridMusksReszd50%Image (167)For a full list of Hybrid Musks available commercially today, with photos, see:

http://www.davidaustinroses.com/eu/type/shrub-roses/hybrid-musk-roses.

In my research, I also discovered that the Pemberton Rose Garden at the St. Francis Hospice in Romford, Essex, has the largest collection of Pemberton Roses in the world. See: http://www.pembertonroses.org.uk/the-garden. What a wonderful place for the terminally ill patients and their families!

Next week, there are three posts on travel books in our library, as a lead up to my Bucket-List of Overseas Gardens, which I would love to visit one day, but for this month at least will be exploring digitally!

Oldhouseintheshires

 

Gracious Noisettes

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.BlogNoisettesReszd50%Image (201)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.BlogNoisettesReszd20%IMG_9248Champney 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. BlogNoisettesReszd2014-10-19 13.44.44Noisettes 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.

BlogNoisettesReszd20%IMG_9249

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.BlogNoisettesReszd2017-04-27 18.03.14BlogNoisettesReszd2016-11-04 19.39.04 It has large flat and quartered rosettes of pale lemon-cream with a superb fresh lemony fragrance.BlogNoisettesReszd2016-11-02 13.32.22BlogNoisettesReszd20%IMG_0413 Lamarque also has copious light green foliage and few thorns.BlogNoisettesReszd2016-11-02 16.49.24Madame 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.BlogNoisettesReszd50%Image (241)BlogNoisettesReszd50%Image (246) It can be grown on a south-facing wall (coldest aspect in Australia) and still blooms reliably.BlogNoisettesReszd50%Image (245) It will grow up to 6 metres in height and has few thorns.BlogNoisettesReszd2016-11-17 08.43.01BlogNoisettesReszd2016-11-05 18.37.23Alister 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!BlogNoisettesReszd2016-11-12 10.06.54 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.BlogNoisettesReszd2014-10-25 09.34.13 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.BlogNoisettesReszd2014-10-25 09.34.18 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.

BlogNoisettesReszd20%IMG_9696

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!BlogNoisettesReszd2016-11-10 09.10.26 The fragrant blooms are shapely double buff-yellow with pink shadings, fading with age.BlogNoisettesReszd20%IMG_0183 It has strong growth and dark green foliage.BlogNoisettesReszd2016-11-08 15.21.14Desprez 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. BlogNoisettesReszd50%Image (239) 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.BlogNoisettesReszd50%Image (202)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.BlogNoisettesReszd50%Image (217) Its prolific continuous display, bronze coloured young foliage, few thorns and strong sweet musky fragrance make it a favourite with many people.BlogNoisettesReszd50%Image (249) We grew it on the front verandah railing (below) and the vegetable trellis (above) in our old garden.BlogNoisettesReszd50%Image (182) 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.BlogDuncanReszd20%IMG_9521 It will reach 2.5 metres tall and prefers warmer Mediterranean  type climates.BlogNoisettesReszd20%IMG_9244Céline 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.BlogDuncanReszd20%IMG_9518It 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.BlogNoisettesReszd20%IMG_9520 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.BlogNoisettesReszd2014-10-19 13.43.37Cloth 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.BlogNoisettesReszd2014-10-19 13.43.09Maréchal 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.BlogNoisettesReszd2014-10-19 13.26.31Next 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.

Alister Clark Roses

Having discussed Australian rose breeder Alister Clark and the Alister Clark Memorial garden at Bulla in my two previous post this week, here are some specific notes about some of the roses he bred, for which I have photos, mainly taken at the Alister Clark Memorial Garden at Bulla. It is by no means an exhaustive list, as our visits to Bulla tended to be in early Spring or late Autumn. I have also included a few more prominent roses, which I have not photographed, with a link to other sites.

Lady Medallist 1912, named for one of his most successful race horses and his first rose.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.06.14Jessie Clark 1915 Clear Pink Single Climbing R. gigantea hybrid. Probably R. gigantea X Madame Martignier. Very large single clear pink roses borne abundantly on a vigorous climber in early Spring. It was the 1st R. gigantea seedling and the 3rd Glenara rose to be released, as well as his first great success as a rose breeder. Named after a favourite niece, who used to visit Glenara with her friends, Nora Cuningham and Gwen Nash, daughter of his great friend, Albert Nash, all of whom were also remembered in the names of his roses.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.57.07BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.16.06Sunny South 1918 A Hybrid Tea, which was a popular tall hedging rose between the two world wars. A cross between Gustav Grunerwald and Betty Berkeley. Large, very recurrent, profusely-blooming, semi-single, fragrant pale pink, flushed carmine, blooms on a very tall bush. I do not have my own photo, but have included it because it was one of Alister’s favourite roses, so please see: http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/189015/.

Australia Felix 1919 Low growing Hybrid Tea;  A cross between Jersey Beauty and La France, the first Hybrid Tea rose; Small, semi-double, fragrant, silvery-pink blooms in clusters. Very recurrent. Australia Felix was also the name given by explorer, Thomas Mitchell, to the lush parts of Western Victoria. Another early success and an ideal rose for small gardens or the front of borders, as in the photo below, where it borders the decking on the left of the photo.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.16.33BlogAlisterClarkReszd20%IMG_4786Black Boy 1919 First Climbing Hybrid Tea; A cross between Bardou Job and Etoile de France; Another great success story; Large, semi-double, fragrant, dark red blooms. Again, I have no photo, but as this particular rose has never left the nursery catalogues for its entire life, you can see the rose here: https://www.diggers.com.au/shop/ornamentals-and-flowers/rose-blackboy/rblbo/.

Gwen Nash 1920 Climbing Hybrid Tea, named for a friend of his niece, Jessie Clark, and daughter of his great friend, Albert. Rosy Morn, another Alister Clark rose, is one of the parents. Large, semi-single, cupped, fragrant, soft-pink blooms with golden stamens. See: http://rosephotographer.blogspot.com.au/2015/03/gwen-nash.html. At Bulla, this rose is grown on the side pergola, near the front fence, on either side of her friend, Jessie Clark.

Golden Vision 1922 Gigantea hybrid  climbing rose with semi-double, fragrant blooms; Its parents are Noisette rose, Maréchal Niel, which gives it its soft creamy lemon-yellow colouring, and R. gigantea, which gives it its almost evergreen leaves. Only blooms once early in Spring.BlogAlisterClarkReszd20%IMG_7175BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.07.15Scorcher 1922 named for a hot day or scorcher! Climbing Hybrid Tea, Madame Abel Chatenay is one of the parents, R. moyesii could be the other unnamed parent. Non-recurrent, large, semi-double, open, slightly fragrant, brilliant scarlet-crimson flowers on a vigorous climber. See: https://www.antiqueroseemporium.com/roses/1133/scorcher.

Squatter’s Dream 1923  A 2nd generation Gigantea bush rose (a seedling of an R. gigantea seedling), named after a racehorse. The bushy, thornless shrub is 2 metres tall, with soft apricot and saffron yellow, semi-single, open flowers.. It blooms for almost 12 months of the year and still had flowers on 1st June at Forest Hall in Tasmania. It is obviously the bee’s dream too, as can be seen in the bottom photo!!!BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.13.26BlogAlisterClarkReszd20%IMG_7183Harbinger 1923  Very vigorous climber and R. gigantea hybrid with large, single, soft-pink flowers. Named for the coming of Spring.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.08.46Lorraine Lee 1924 Second- generation Gigantea hybrid bush rose, bred from a cross between Jessie Clark and Capitaine Millet, and named for a distant cousin of the Clarks after her visit. It blooms all year round with open, double, rosy-apricot flowers with a beautiful scent and evergreen foliage, inherited from R. gigantea. It is the most popular rose ever grown in Australia. Between 1924 and 1934, nurseryman EW Hackett sold 44 000 plants of Lorraine Lee. Often grown as a hedge. She is a very tough rose, which thrives on neglect! It has both bush and climbing forms. BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.52.32BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.54.06Climbing Lorraine Lee was a sport of Lorraine Lee in 1932.blogcottagegardenrosesreszd20img_9104Baxter Beauty 1924 Gigantea bush rose; Another sport of Lorraine Lee; Not strictly an Alister Clark rose, it was discovered by Russell Grimwade before 1927 at Baxter, Victoria. Varies from light yellow to sulphur and a light salmon pink on outside of petals. It flowers in Winter like Lorraine Lee.

BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.22.06BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-03-30 16.09.10Milkmaid 1925 A huge, recurrent-flowering rambler with dense, shiny green foliage and clusters of medium, open, semi-double, creamy-white flowers in Spring, the scent of milk and honey, hence the name. Very vigorous climber. Crépuscule is one of the parents.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.09.37

Tonner’s Fancy 1928 Gigantea climbing rose; Its parents were an R. gigantea seedling and an unnamed variety. Fragrant, large, globular, white tinged pink blooms, named after Ballarat gardener, George Tonner, who persuaded Alister to release it. Very short flowering period, but roses come so early in Spring, that they are often damaged by frost.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.09.03BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.12.46Countess of Stradbroke 1928 Climbing Hybrid Tea; A cross between Walter Clark and an unnamed variety; Large, dark, glowing, crimson, double, highly scented blooms, which are very recurrent. Named after the the wife of the 3rd Earl of Stradbroke, who was the Governor of Victoria from 1920 to 1926. The Countess raced horses and stayed with the Clarks; One of Alister Clark’s greatest successes, especially in the United States, so here is a link: https://www.helpmefind.com/rose/l.php?l=2.17985.0.

Mrs Albert Nash 1929 Hybrid Tea Very dark red, very recurrent, fragrant blooms.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-03-30 16.02.12Peggy Bell 1929 Hybrid Tea named after a family friend for her 21st birthday. Mid-pink to salmon-pink and free flowering. Rose in the right-hand side of photograph below:BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.06.10Amy Johnson 1931 Soft pink, tall shrub rose; Large, cupped, fragrant, pink blooms; One of the parents is Souvenir de Gustav Prat. Named to commemorate the landing of Amy Johnson (1903-1941), famous English pilot and first woman to fly solo from England to Australia in 1930. She landed at the Moonee Valley Racecourse, where she was presented with a bouquet of Alister Clark roses.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.50.43Margaret Turnbull 1931 Large-flowered, climbing Hybrid Tea rose of unknown breeding; Very recurrent, large, double, slightly fragrant, mid-pink flowers. Named for a friend of the Clarks for over 50 years. Margaret Turnbull was a daughter of a Scots storekeeper, who became a Victorian Member of Parliament. At Bulla, it is growing at the front of the main pergola, facing the Council offices. The paler pink rose in the middle of the pergola behind Margaret Turnbull is Doris Downes (see next entry).BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.18.22BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-10-19 15.52.34Doris Downes 1932 Climbing Hybrid Tea rose of unknown breeding; Named after a fellow rose breeder, who was a stylish Melbourne beauty and who married an Army surgeon. Very large, semi-double, cupped, fragrant, profuse but non-recurrent blooms.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.14.35BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.57.41 Broadway 1933 was found at Mrs Oswin’s garden in Broadway, Camberwell, Victoria and is probably a Clark Hybrid Gigantea climber. Unknown breeding.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.16.46BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.16.46BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.12.11Marjorie Palmer 1936  Polyantha, with Jersey Beauty as one of the parents. Very recurrent, double, very fragrant, rich-pink flowers in clusters on a short bushy plant. A good friend of the Clarks, Marjorie and Claude Palmer, who lived at Dalvui, near Terang, played polo and restored and extended the original Guifoyle-designed garden.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-03-30 15.59.41Sheila Bellair 1937 Large, semi-double, open, salmon-pink flowers with golden stamens. Hybrid Tea shrub rose;  Miss Mocata is one of the parents. Sheila met Alister through her father, who served on the Moonee Valley Committee with his friend. Sheila was an excellent horsewoman, who was a member of the Oaklands Hunt Club with Alister and  became a breeder of thoroughbred horses.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.22.30Cicely Lascelles 1937 Climbing Hybrid Tea. A cross between Frau Oberhofgartner Singer and Scorcher, with abundant, warm-pink, semi-double, open blooms from Spring to Autumn and Autumn; Named after a friend of the Clarks, who was a champion golfer from a landed family. Note these photos below were taken at the Walter Duncan’s Heritage Garden, in Clare, South Australia.BlogAlisterClarkReszd20%IMG_9468BlogAlisterClarkReszd20%IMG_9669 Nancy Hayward 1937 Very vigorous Climbing Hybrid Tea, a cross of Jessie Clark and a 2nd generation Gigantea hybrid,  with huge, single, scentless, vibrant lipstick-pink flowers all year round. It was named for the daughter of a Sir William Irvine, a Federal Minister and later Chief Justice of Victoria, as well as Patron and Vice Patron of the Rose Society from 1928 to 1943. She was also Susan Irvine’s husband’s aunt, so was one of the first ports of call when Susan Irvine started researching Alister Clark roses, although Nancy couldn’t tell Susan much and never liked that particular rose!BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.49.08BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-10-19 16.05.04Sunlit 1937 Hybrid Tea bush rose of unknown breeding; Always in flower with small, double, soft apricot-pink blooms with a good scent on a compact bush. Very acclaimed in Australia at the time.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-03-30 16.09.26Lady Huntingfield 1937  Hybrid Tea; A cross between Busybody and Aspirant Marcel Rouyer.  Large, double, fragrant, rich golden-yellow flowers. Vigorous bushy plant and very recurrent. Named after Margaret Crosby, a New York judge’s daughter, who married Australian-born Baron Huntingfield, who became the Governor of Victoria from 1933 to 1939.

BlogAlisterClarkReszd20%IMG_4775Editor Stewart 1939 Cherry-red semi-double pillar rose, with wavy petals and red young foliage, named for his good friend, TA Stewart, who was editor of the Australian Rose Annual for 30 years.

BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.01.09Mrs Fred Danks 1951 Lilac-pink Hybrid Tea, released after Alister’s death. A highly scented shrub rose, named after a keen gardener, Dorothy (Fred’s wife!), who was a family friend of the Clarks. Unknown parentage. Very large, abundant, semi-double, fragrant, pink-violet flowers on a tall upright bush. She compliments Nancy Hayward (in the corner of the building in the background of the 1st photo) and both contrast well against the dark grey bluestone wall of the old council offices.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.22.57BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.23.09Many of the photos in this post were taken at The Alister Clark Memorial Rose Garden at Bulla, the subject of my next post tomorrow. It is a very special place to visit, a firm favourite of mine and not to be missed in the Springtime, when Broadway (on the left) and Tonner’s Fancy (on the right) are in full bloom! BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.21.13Now that we are in the midst of our Australian Winter, it is an excellent time to sit beside a cosy fire to read and plan future forays! Over the next few weeks, I will be posting book reviews of some of our favourite natural history books in our library. As this is a major passion of ours, we have lots of books on this subject area, so I have divided them up into four specific areas: Plants; Birds and Butterflies; Animals and Marine Life; and General Reference Guides (including books on geology, astronomy and weather). I hope you enjoy them!

 

 

Alister Clark Memorial Rose Garden

This garden is devoted to showcasing the beautiful roses bred by Australian rose breeder, Alister Clark, about whom I wrote in the previous post.

Alister Clark Memorial Rose Garden

96 Bulla Rd. (Corner of Sunbury Rd and Somerton Rd, signposted Green St.)

Bulla, Victoria 3428  10 km NW of Melbourne (35 minutes from Melbourne CBD) and 7 minute drive from Tullamarine Airport.     Melways 177 A8/ B7

Open all year round, every day from 9 am to 5 pm, though other sources state: Daylight Hours. Free.

BlogAlisterClarkBlogImage (572)There is a free brochure at the gate with a garden map.BlogAlisterClarkReszd30%Image (569)

https://www.hume.vic.gov.au/What39s_On_amp_Things_To_Do/Things_to_do_in_and_around_Hume/Hume_Attractions

Situated between an old bluestone church and the Old Bulla Shire Council office, this pretty garden is one of my favourite rose gardens of all!BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.24.07BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-03-30 15.56.33BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.00.15BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-10-19 16.04.48 This pretty garden mixes Alister Clark roses with trees and shrubs like Eucalyptus citriodora (1st photo); a Quince tree (2nd photo); Silky Oaks Grevillea robusta (3rd photo); Echiums and Lilacs (4th and 5th photos);BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-03-30 16.04.32BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.16.33BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.19.08BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.01.40BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.46.11 lavender hedges;BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-03-30 16.06.05 and bulbs and perennials including : Agapanthus, Ajuga, Anchusa, Aquilegia, Bergenia, Bluebells, Catmint, Clematis, Daffodils, Day Lilies, Erigeron, Forget-Me-Nots, Geranium, Grevilleas, Hebe, Heliotrope, Hellebores, Heuchera, Iris (Bearded, Louisiana), Japanese Anemones, Jasmine, Kniphofia (yellow), Lambs’ Ears, Lavender, Lemon Balm, Lilac, Mignonette, Nasturtium, Nigella, Persimmon, Poppies, Queen Fabiola, Salvias, Scabiosa, Scilla peruviana, Snow-in-Summer, Statice, Verbena (Candy Stripe), Vervain, and Viburnum opulus.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.01.36BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.58.05BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.05.33BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.15.46 There are 650 plants and 68 varieties of Alister Clark roses, including climbers, pillar roses, Polyanthas and Hybrid Tea bush roses,BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.14.19BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-10-19 16.04.52 and all these roses are identified, with interpretive boards about the dedicatees.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.57.22

It is the only publicly accessible and complete collection of all the Alister Clark roses, still available today.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.51.05

 

BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.53.42The garden is dedicated to growing, displaying and promoting Alister Clark’s life work and is maintained by the Hume City Council and volunteers from the Friends of the Alister Clark Memorial Rose Garden, who hold regular monthly working bees on Fridays and Saturdays between 10.30 am and 2.30 pm throughout the year. Here are some photos of the back entrance, shed and garden:

BlogAlisterClarkReszd20%IMG_7173BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.24.49BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-10-19 16.05.11 Roses were sourced from all over Australia, including many of the old gardens of the original families, after whom Clark had dedicated his roses. The best time to visit is in Spring, though there are roses in bloom from October to March, and while the garden is open every day, there is an Open Day on the Saturday after the Melbourne Cup each year, when you can chat to the volunteers, who maintain the garden.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-10-19 16.05.33BlogAlisterClarkReszd2514-10-19 16.04.59Tomorrow is my final post about Alister Clark, with a few notes about specific Alister Clark Roses, whose photographs were mainly taken in this beautiful memorial garden!

 

 

 

Alister Clark: Australian Rose Breeder

Alister Clark was one of Australia’s most famous and prolific rose breeders, producing many very well-known and popular roses, well-suited to Australia’s hot dry climate, so I am devoting three posts to him this week: his life (today), Alister Clark Memorial Garden at Bulla (Wednesday), and a few notes about the specific roses he bred (Thursday). Below is a photograph of one of his most famous and popular roses, Lorraine Lee 1924.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 14.56.10Alister Clark was born in 1864 to Walter and Annie Clark of Glenara, Bulla. Walter Clark (1803-1873) was a Scottish immigrant from Argyllshire, who arrived in Australia in 1838, started in the Riverine area of NSW, where he made money out of stock during the gold rush, overlanded stock to Melbourne and then in 1857, he bought 485 acres at Deep Creek, Bulla, where he built a large single storey Italianate house of brick and rendered stone (granite and bluestone), with a hipped slate roof and encircling verandah with open work timber posts and lintels, on an elevated site above Deep Creek Gorge, which he called  ‘Glenara’. See the bottom of this post for more about ‘Glenara’.

The Melbourne architects, Albert Purchas and Charles Swyer, also designed the garden around the house, including a terrace with stone steps, urns and a sundial to the west and an extensive network of paths cut into the rocky outcrops to the south. In 1872, Walter built a rustic wooden bridge across the creek to a romantic stone folly, a bluestone lookout tower, on the opposite hill. He also established a vineyard, being one of the first landowners to grow grapes in the Sunbury region and gradually expanded the property to 4079 acres by his death in 1873 . He was President of the Shire of Bulla, now part of the City of Hume, from 1866 to 1871. Below is Nancy Hayward 1937, an equally famous Alister Clark rose, which is never out of flower.bloghxroses20reszd2014-10-19-13-17-23Alister’s mother, Annie, died when Alister was 1 year old and his father 8 years later, so Alister and his older siblings, brother Walter and 3 sisters, Annie, Jessie and Aggie, were raised by relatives. Alister was educated in Hobart, at Sydney Grammar School (1877-1878) and at the Loretto School in Scotland. He studied Law at Cambridge University (1883-1885), but never practiced, though he was a Justice of Peace. On the boat home to Australia after his graduation, he met Edith (Edie) Rhodes, daughter of wealthy New Zealander, Robert Heaton Rhodes, and married her in Christchurch, New Zealand, on the 7 July 1888. Alister bought the Glenara homestead block (830 acres) from his father’s estate in 1892 and by his death, the property was 1035 acres.

Alsiter and Edie never had any children and lived most of their life at Glenara, where Alister bred roses, daffodils and nerines and pursued his other passions like playing polo, billiards and golf, being a founding member of the Royal Melbourne Golf Club. He frequently visited his good friend, Albert Nash, to play golf on his private golf course in Cranbourne. He added a billiard room to the eastern end of the homestead in 1895. Alister also loved his horses, keeping steeplechasers, draughthorses and ponies at Glenara. He was Master of the local Oaklands Hunt Club and Founding Chairman of the Moonee Pond Racing Club in 1917. The Alister Clark Stakes, named in his honour, are still run at the Autumn race meet at Moonee Ponds every year. Like his father, he was President of the Shire of Bulla in 1896, 1902 and 1908. The rose below is Squatter’s Dream 1923 , named after a racehorse.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.13.21Alister was involved in the breeding of a number of new species of daffodils, his best known being Mabel Taylor, which is still grown and used in breeding today and which Alister believed was the first pink daffodil in Australia.  In 1948, he was awarded the Peter Burr Memorial Cup from the Royal Horticultural Society in England, but it was roses for which he became famous!BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.24.37blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9334Alister Clark was one of Australia’s most famous and prolific rose breeders. He bred over 122 (some sources say 138) varieties from 1912 to 1949, using a huge species rose from Burma and the Himalayas, Rosa gigantea (photos above), to create roses specifically suited to Australia’s hot dry climate, one of the first rose breeders to do so on both counts (ie the use of R. gigantea in breeding, as it does not thrive in the cooler climates of Europe, where many of the rose breeders hailed from at that time; and the breeding of roses ideally suited for Australian conditions). They were the most widely planted roses in Australia in the period between the two world wars. See : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Alister_Clark_roses for a list of Alister Clark roses. Another useful site with photographs is: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alister_Clark_Memorial_Rose_Garden.

He bred his roses with a number of specific aims in mind…

Firstly, he wanted to produce the first rose to flower all year round. His first generation crosses of R. gigantea were Spring blooming only eg Jessie Clark; Courier; Golden Vision and Tonner’s Fancy; However, he  achieved his aim with second- generation crosses, Lorraine Lee and Nancy Hayward, both bred from Jessie Clark. A bunch of Lorraine Lee (photo below) was shown at every meeting of the National Rose Society for 20 consecutive months.BlogAlisterClarkReszd20%IMG_9113

He also aimed for roses, which performed well in ordinary gardens, rather than show roses, so his roses were very popular with the general public in Australia. An Argus poll in 1937 of 230 varieties of garden roses and 99 different climbing rose types resulted in Lorraine Lee being voted the most popular garden rose, while another of his roses, Black Boy, polled as the most popular climbing rose. While Lorraine Lee, Black Boy and Nancy Hayward (photo below at Werribee Park) are considered to be some of his most successful roses, Alister believed that Sunny South and Gwen Nash were some of his best roses.

blogvsrg20reszd2014-10-19-13-55-27

He wanted to breed tough roses, which did not require pampering or coddling and he did not believe in using chemical sprays and fertilisers, preferring to encourage birds for aphid control. Our little Eastern Spinebill is an excellent rose guardian!BlogAprilGarden20%Reszd2016-04-06 14.13.19Alister named his roses after horses, people and places. His first rose, Hybrid Tea, Lady Medallist 1912, was named after a successful racehorse, as was Squatter’s Dream 1923, Tonner’s Fancy 1928, Flying Colours 1922 and Courier 1930, while many of his roses bred the name of family friends, especially women, like climbing rose Gwen Nash 1920 and bush roses Peggy Bell 1929; Mary Guthrie 1929; Marjorie Palmer 1929; Countess of Stradbroke 1928 (the wife of the 3rd Earl of Stradbroke, who was the Governor of Victoria from  1920 to 1926) and Cicely Lascelles 1937 (photo below). He named Amy Johnson 1931 after the famous English pilot, who was the first woman to fly solo from England to Australia, to commemorate her landing and Edith Clark 1928 after his wife, who was also the Patroness of the Victorian Rose Society.

I will be writing about specific Alister Clark Roses on Thursday, but for more on the naming of his roses, read: ‘The Women Behind the Roses: An Introduction to Alister Clark’s Rose-Namesakes 1915 – 1952’ , written in 2010  by Andrew and Tilly Govanstone. It is also well worth reading ‘Man of Roses: Alister Clark of Glenara and His Family’ 1990  by Tommy R. Garnett and Susan Irvine’s Rose Gardens: Garden of a Thousand Roses with A Hillside of Roses by Susan Irvine 1992  for more information on this amazing rosarian, as well as an illustrated list of his roses.BlogAlisterClarkReszd20%IMG_9470Being a gentleman of private means with a philanthropic nature, Alister never bred or grew roses commercially, preferring to donate them to rose societies and charities for their fundraising efforts, as well as giving them as gifts to the people, after whom he had named his varieties. For example, Jessie Clark (photo below) was donated to the National Rose Society of Victoria to contribute to prize money at rose shows.BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.15.58Alister Clark was the founding President of the National Rose Society of Victoria in 1889. He was highly regarded in the USA and was awarded a Honorary Life Membership of the American Rose Society in 1931 and elected as Vice-President of the Royal Horticultural Society of London from 1944 – 1948. In 1936, he was awarded the Dean Hole Medal from the National Rose Society in London, the highest honour in the rose world. Here is a photo of gold rose: Baxter Beauty 1924, not strictly bred by Alister Clark, but a sport of Lorraine Lee :bloghxroses20reszdimg_4796Alister died in 1949 and after his death, interest in his roses waned with the renewed availability and popularity of roses from Europe and America after the end of the Second World War. Also, they are large roses for large gardens and most bloom only in the Spring, so are unsuitable for gardens with limited space. While Black Boy, Nancy Hayward and Lorraine Lee remained constantly in nurserymans’ catalogues, many Alister Clark roses were lost during this period.

Interest in Alister Clark roses was revived in the 1980s, especially through the efforts of nurseryman, John Nieuwesteeg, and roselover, Susan Irvine, who grew many of them at her various gardens at Bleak House and Erinvale, Victoria and Forest Hall, Tasmania, about which she has written, the former two gardens faeatured in her book photographed below. It is also worth reading the interview with John Nieuwesteeg: http://gpcaa.typepad.com/settings/2011/02/alister-clark-roses.html  for more information about the search for Alister Clark roses and the establishment of the GPCAA’s Alister Clark Collection.blogrosebooks30reszdimage-233

Alister Clark roses are now grown in the Rex Hazlewood Rose Garden at the Old Government House in Canberra (26 Alister Clark roses); at the Alister Clark Memorial Rose Garden in the St. Kilda Botanic Gardens on Blessington St, St. Kilda (5 unlabelled Clark roses including Black Boy and Lorraine Lee. See: http://www.melbourneplaces.com/melbourne/alister-clark-rose-garden-%E2%80%93-botanical-gardens-st-kilda/) ; the Alister Clark Memorial Garden at Moonee Valley Racecourse; the John Nieuwesteeg Heritage Rose Garden at Maddingley Park, Bacchus Marsh; and the Alister Clark Memorial Rose Garden at Bulla.  Ruston’s National Rose Collection contains nearly all Alister Clark’s climbers, while State Rose Garden of Victoria at Werribee Park has a large collection of Alister Clark roses, especially the Gigantea climbers. The Geelong Botanic Garden grows Borderer; Lady Huntingfield; Mrs Fred Danks; Squatter’s Dream and Mrs Maud Alston, and the rose maze at Kodja Place, Kojonup, Western Australia has a hedge of Australian bred roses, including 32 Alister Clark roses.

Private gardens featuring Alister Clark roses include Richmond Hill and Forest Hall, Tasmania; and Carrick Hill, South Australia. They are also grown in some of the world’s greatest rose gardens like Bagatelle in Paris and Sangerhausen in Germany. Here is another photo of Nancy Hayward 1937 at Werribee Park.

BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 13.55.38

And finally, a few notes about Alister’s family home, ‘Glenara’.

Glenara

10 Glenara Drive, Bulla, Hume City

Once the mecca of rose lovers all over Australia and home to famous rose breeder, Alister Clark, the 25 acre garden was started by his father Walter and ran right down to Deep Creek. The garden was designed by Charles Swyer and included fruit trees and a specialised collection of conifers and unusual Australian natives. The property was painted by Eugene von Guerhard in 1867, the painting now held in the National Gallery of Victoria.

When Alister owned Glenara, the garden was an informal garden, with drifts of daffodils carpeting the hillside opposite the house and roses planted informally through the garden. He employed up to 8 gardeners. After Alister’s death, it fell into disrepair with blackberry, smilax, kangaroos, possums and rabbits overtaking the garden.

The old house is now classified by the National Trust and listed on the Historic Buildings Register. See : http://vhd.heritagecouncil.vic.gov.au/places/177.

The verandah is festooned with blue wisteria and the yellow Banksia rose R. banksiae lutea, with China rose, Cramoisi Superieur, in the front bed. At the start of her quest, Susan Irvine visited owner Ruth Rendle at Glenara, where she was entranced with the wild and woolly garden, overgrown with periwinkle, smilax, agapanthus, long grass, wild daffodils and sweet peas and huge mounds of surviving roses including Jessie Clark; Milkmaid; Traverser; and Tonner’s Fancy. She took cuttings from 64 different bushes, but unfortunately, there were no labels, garden plans or records. A good proportion of them struck, though many of the climbers did not, those bred from R. gigantea stock being notoriously difficult propagate. Tonner’s Fancy 1928, photographed below, still flourishes at Glenara.

BlogAlisterClarkReszd2014-10-19 15.12.59

Tomorrow, I will be writing about the Alister Clark Memorial Rose Garden at Bulla, one of my favourite rose gardens in Victoria!

Tantalizing Tea Roses

Last month, we discussed China Roses and their enormous impact on rose breeding in the West. The other oriental rose of note was Rosa gigantea, which when crossed with Rosa chinensis, produced two of the Stud Chinas:

Humes’ Blush Tea-Scented China R. odorata odorata    and

Parks’ Yellow Tea-Scented China R. odorata ochroleuca (photo below), both introduced to the West in 1810 and 1824 respectively. While possessing the positive attributes of prolonged flowering and yellow blooms, they were not robust in the cooler English climate and very susceptible to weather damage.BlogChinasReszd2014-10-19 13.25.27Hybridization of these two roses with Dwarf Chinas, Bourbons and Noisettes produced a new race of Teas, with a wide colour range (red, pink, blush, white, yellow and pale orange) and a bud with a high pointed centre, different to other roses of the day. Crossing Parks’ Yellow Tea-Scented China with Fortune’s Double Yellow (R. odorata pseudoindica),  another old Chinese garden rose with few thorns, dark green glossy foliage and loosely-formed double, buff-yellow fragrant blooms with tints of orange (photos below), produced the early yellow Teas of the 20th Century.blogvsrg20reszd2014-10-19-13-01-46blogvsrg20reszd2014-10-19-13-01-54Originally called Tea-Scented Chinas, the name of these new roses was abbreviated to Tea Roses. There is much conjecture over the fragrance and origin of the name – some say these roses have the faint fragrance of fresh China tea, while others attribute the name to the fact that the roses were stored with the wooden tea containers during their voyage from China to Europe in the tea clippers of the East India Company. Despite their slender weak stalks and tenderness in the cooler climate, they quickly became popular with Victorians, who wore the blooms in their buttonholes. In cooler climates, most Teas were grown in greenhouses or against a warm, sheltered wall, but they thrived in the warmer climates of the Mediterranean areas; South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and warmer parts of America like California. Their heyday was from 1882 to 1910, with over 250 Tea Roses introduced between 1830 and 1840. Many were produced by French breeders like Gilbert Nabonnand (1829-1903), based at Golfe Juan on the Cote d’Azur, who specialized in breeding Chinas and Teas, producing 78 Teas between 1872 and 1903. Tea Roses remained popular through the Edwardian Era, but the outbreak of the First World War meant that there was no longer the time, money or staff to maintain these tender roses in heated glass-houses. The new Hybrid Teas, as well as climbers, ramblers and Polyanthas were gaining in popularity and competed for space in gardens. Sadly, most of the Tea varieties, known to the Victorians, are now extinct, many killed off by severe frosts in Britain.

The Climbing Teas were much hardier with large, vigorous, thick stems and healthy glossy foliage.  We are very lucky in Australia to have a large collection of Tea Roses at Rustons’ Nursery, Renmark, South Australia. The warm climate is very suitable for Tea Roses. In fact, there is a whole book written about them by 5 Western Australian authors:

‘Tea Roses: Old Roses for Warm Gardens’  by Lynne Chapman, Jenny M Jones, Billy West, Noelene Drage, Di Durston and Hillary Merrifield  2008 (http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3225298-tea-roses).BlogTeaRosesReszd25%Image (616)

The famous Australian rose breeder, Alister Clark, crossed Tea Roses back with R. gigantea to produce some very vigorous famous old Climbing Teas like Lorraine Lee 1924 (photo below) and Nancy Hayward 1937, perfect for the hot dry Australian climate, but I am devoting a separate post to him at the end of this month!blogcottagegardenrosesreszd20img_9113While we are lucky to still be able to appreciate their nodding slightly fragrant blooms here in Australia, their big claim to fame in Europe is their major role in the development of the modern rose, being one of the parents (the other being Hybrid Perpetuals) of Hybrid Teas.

Description

In warm climates, Teas form large, vigorous, densely-foliated bushes with a branching habit and often a twiggy growth pattern. The new leaves are greeny-bronze to copper-brown, dark red or purple, while the elongated shiny mature leaves are often evergreen.

Recurrent-flowering with subtle colours and a unique Tea fragrance, the blooms are generally cup-shaped, opening out flat, with a wide range of petal arrangements from cupped, globular, imbricated, quartered or muddled. The petals are silky and translucent.

Tea Roses display cymose inflorescences : each shoot ends in a bud, which is the largest and opens first. Many Tea Roses have nodding heads.

The hips are medium to large in size, yellow or orange, deepening to red with cold weather, and usually globular in shape with a flattened top.

Cultivation

Needs a warm frost-free climate or environment (glasshouse or warm sheltered wall) and well-drained fertile soil. Like China roses, they also resent hard pruning, so only prune lightly to maintain the shape of the bush, thin out old growth  or remove dead wood.

NOTE: The height and size of Tea Roses is very dependent on the climate. Most Tea roses in the United Kingdom are less than 3 feet tall, while their counterparts in warmer climates are much taller.

Varieties of Tea Roses

Tea-Scented Rose: Rosa gigantea :

Tall climber, over 2 metres high, with evergreen foliage and the largest flowers and hips of any rose.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.24.37Large single primrose blooms 7 – 14 cm across, fading to white, in Summer.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-27 12.59.58

Originally found in the Shan Hills, North Burma in 1882, but later also in North-Western China. Performs poorly in cooler Northern climates, but very well in California, Australia and Mediterranean regions.blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9334Adam

Also known as The President and bred by Adam, United Kingdom, 1833    Unknown parentage.

Credited as being the first Tea Rose and named after its breeder, its pioneer status is erroneous, according to the ‘Tea Roses’ book mentioned above, as it was actually bred in 1838, and in fact, there were many other extinct Teas bred before 1833. It is best used as a climber, which reaches up to 2 metres in height.blogsummer-gardenreszd20img_1065Plentiful large dark green leaves and large, fully double, often quartered when fully open, blooms of buff, amber and apricot with pink tints deep in the centre.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_1115 I love the warm colours of this beautiful rose and am growing it on the northern end of the main pergola, where it flowers well throughout the season.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_1162Safrano (Aimé Plantier)

Bred by Beauregard in France 1839 of unknown parentage (according to Peter Beales, though Roger Phillips and Martyn Rix suggest it is possibly a cross between Parks’ Yellow Tea-Scented Rose and Mme Deprez, the Bourbon  of 1831), Safrano is one of the oldest Teas still in existence and was considered as one of the best cut roses in France until 1900, being sent in vast quantities from the Mediterranean area to Paris. It was very popular as a buttonhole rose.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.24.18Its high-centred buds open out flat to  large, semi-double, fragrant,  apricot-yellow to saffron blooms. Very floriferous, it has plentiful mid-green foliage and will grow to 2 metres tall in a warm climate.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-25 09.39.01Triomphe de Luxembourg

Bred by Hardy, France, 1839, it also is of unknown parentage.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9307Less than 1 metre tall, with dark green foliage and clusters of fully double salmon-pink blooms, fading to pinkish-buff with age.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9306BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9308Devoniensis  (the Magnolia Rose)

Bred by Foster, United Kingdom 1841 of unknown parentage, it also has a climbing sport from 1858. A very hardy Tea, it will climb to 3 metres in height, especially if grown in warm climates, though it does better in British conservatories. The stems have few thorns and ample light green foliage and it repeat-flowers well with large, fragrant, creamy, occasionally blush-pink, flowers.bloghxroses20reszdimg_0731 One of my favourite Teas, I am growing it opposite Adam on the northern end of our main pergola. I first saw it over an arched pergola at Walter Duncan’s Heritage Garden, where its beautiful nodding heads were shown off to perfection.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9628BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9415Souvenir d’Un Ami

Bred by Bélot-Defougère, France, 1846,  of unknown parentage.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.47.02BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.46.57A vigorous bush with a branching habit, rich green foliage and fully double, cupped, very fragrant rose-pink and salmon blooms.

Sombreuil

A very hardy Climbing Tea, bred by Robert in France in 1850, it grows to 4 metres tall, has ample lush green foliage and repeat-flowers well with fully double, sweetly scented, flattish pure white flowers with a hint of cream in the base. In my garden, it forms one side of the arch opposite Cornelia, at the gate into the chook yard.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_0877blognovgarden20reszdimg_0189BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_1039Duchesse de Brabant (also known as Comtesse de Labarthe; Comtesse Ouwaroff; and in Australia, Countess Bertha)

Bred by Bernède, France, 1857 of unknown parentage.

A vigorous, spreading, well-foliated, free-flowering bush, up to 1.5 metres tall, with large, shapely cupped and very double, clear-pink  to rose-pink blooms with a strong Tea fragrance. There is also a climbing form, up to 4 metres tall. BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.22.57Very hardy and disease-resistant, it is one of the Earth-Kind Roses (see: http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/earthkindroses/cultivars/duchesse-de-brabant/).BlogTeasReszd50%Image (220)Said to be a favourite of Teddy Roosevelt’s, it is certainly one of mine. I first grew it as a cutting, taken from an old garden belonging to Ross’s uncle, which has since formed part of the Gold Coast Botanical Gardens. I grew the climbing form in my old Armidale garden and now have the bush form here in Candelo, though it is still a bit of a weedy specimen and needs to pull it socks up!BlogTeasReszd2017-04-06 12.13.51Catherine Mermet

Bred by Guillot Fils, France, 1869, of unknown parentage.

Once widely grown for the cut flower trade, this rose is best grown in glasshouses in the United Kingdom. It has plentiful healthy mid-green foliage with copper tinges and longish stems, bearing shapely, high-centred buds, which open out to semi-double lilac-pink flowers with blush-pink centres.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9299Marie Van Houtte

Bred by Ducher, France, 1871, a cross between Mme Falcot, a medium yellow Tea, similar to Safrano, and Mme de Tartas, a light pink Tea used extensively in Victorian times for breeding.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.49.50A vigorous plant with a sprawling habit, this rose has rich green foliage and is very free-flowering. Large pointed buds open out to very fragrant, cream nodding flowers, tinged with carmine pink, with a buff colour at the base of the petals. Will reach 2 metres on a warm wall.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.49.45Anna Oliver

Also bred by Ducher, France, in 1872, of unknown parentage.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-25 09.31.12A vigorous branching bush with good, mid-green foliage and shapely, high-centred, fragrant, flesh- pink blooms.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.47.31BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9305Mme Lombard

Introduced by Lacharme, France, 1878, this rose is a seedling of Mme de Tartas and looks very similar, apart from the colour.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.48.45A vigorous bush with dark green foliage and very double, full, fragrant, salmon blooms.

Général Schablikine

Bred by Nabonnand, France, 1878, of unknown parentage and one of his most famous roses.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.15.16A very useful rose, with compact well-foliated growth and very double copper-red and cherry-red blooms, which open out flat.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.16.42Mlle Franziska Krüger

Another Nabonnand rose, launched in 1879, and thought to be a cross between Tea Roses, Catherine Mermet and Général Schablikine.

A repeat-flowering heat-tolerant Tea with a susceptibility to mildew, it reaches 1 metre in height and has large, fragrant, very double, cupped, orange-pink blooms with pink undertones and yellow centres.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-25 09.33.13Monsieur Tillier

Bred by Bernaix, France, 1891 of unknown parentage.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-25 09.35.39Tall, lax, vigorous growth with large, loosely-double, blood-red flowers with violet smudges and very little scent. Repeat-flowers well.blogcottagegardenrosesreszd20img_9168

This rose is often confused with the next rose:

Archiduc Joseph   also goes under the spelling: Archduke Joseph)

Bred by Nabonnand, France, 1892, and a seedling of Tea Rose, Mme Lombard, this outstanding rose is a hardy shrub or small climber, few thorns and plentiful dark-green glossy foliage.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9273 It repeat-flowers well, the colour of the blooms varying with temperature, the petals a mixture of pink, purple, orange and russet, with tints of yellow and gold in the centre.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_1116My rose (above and below) was sold to me as Archiduc Joseph, but could well be Monsieur Tillier!blogvsrg20reszd2014-10-19-13-18-21  Here is a site exploring the differences: http://www.annchapman.net.nz/content/archduc-joseph-and-mons-tillier-rose-any-name-looks-just-good-and-smells-sweet. There is also a discussion of the difference in the ‘Tea Rose’ book mentioned: See https://books.google.com.au/books?id=a2_g1faKWdYC&pg=PA147&lpg=PA147&dq=Archiduc+Joseph+and+Monsieur+Tillier&source=bl&ots=AlFw23cloU&sig=o-1HAKDpgVIY6nTOhXiaarhYQzM&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiuhPafl57TAhVLkpQKHdjEBKYQ6AEIUzAM#v=onepage&q=Archiduc%20Joseph%20and%20Monsieur%20Tillier&f=false.

Either way, it has been a wonderful rose- very tough and hardy, it still thrives near the Pepperina tree and is very generous with her beautiful orange-pink blooms!blognovgarden20reszd2016-11-10-18-30-56

Maman Cochet

Bred by Scipion Cochet, France, 1893, this rose is a cross between Tea Roses, Marie Van Houtte and Mme Lombard, and was once a famous exhibition rose.

It has vigorous growth, few thorns, leathery dark green foliage and is very free-flowering with large, globular pale-pink blooms, which open out blowsy and are deeper in colour towards the centre, with  lemon-yellow at the base of the petals.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-25 09.40.23White Maman Cochet is a sport, bred by Cook, USA, 1896 (photo above). It has both bush and climbing forms and repeat-flowers well with creamy-white, fragrant, shapely, high-centred blooms, with a lemon centre and cherry-pink outer petals.

Francis Dubreuil

Bred by Dubreuil, France, 1894, of unknown parentage

With moderately thorny stems and sparse glossy dark-green foliage, this rose repeat-flowers well. Its large pointed buds open to high-centred fragrant, dark-red velvety blooms, which open out blowsy and pale slightly with age.BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9662Mrs Dudley Cross

Bred by William Paul, UK, 1907

Thornless upright shrub to 3 metres, which repeat-flowers with medium, double, moderately fragrant, muddled yellow blooms, which blush to pink and then crimson as they age.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.19.30 Very resistant to blackspot, it is also an Earth-Kind rose. See: http://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/newsletters/hortupdate/2011/apr/ek-roses-2011.html.

Lady Hillingdon

Bred by Lowe and Shawyer, UK, 1910 from a cross between two Tea Roses, Papa Gontier and Mme Hoste. It has a climbing form, bred by Hicks, USA 1917.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.25.04

A very famous and hardy old rose, with thornless plum-coloured stems, plentiful dark-green foliage, with copper mahogany tinges and long slender buds, which open to highly fragrant, large, blowsy, semi-double rich yolky-yellow blooms. I grew the climbing form on our tennis court fence in our old garden in Armidale (photo below).BlogTeasReszd50%Image (218)Rosette Delizy

Bred by Gilbert’s son, Paul Nabonnand, France, 1922 from a cross between Général Galliéni, one of his father’s Tea Roses, as well as being  one of the most popular roses of its day, and another Tea Rose, Comtesse Bardi (a cross between Noisette Rose, Rêve d’Or, and Tea Rose, Mme Lombard).BlogTeasReszd20%IMG_9679A branching bush, which has good foliage and repeat-flowers well with large full blooms of a lovely combination of rose-pink, buff and apricot and a fruity scent.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.26.07 Will reach 1.8 metres on a wall.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-19 13.26.03

Susan Louise

Bred by Charles E Adams, US, 1929, this vigorous disease-resistant climber is a seedling of the Gigantea Hybrid, Belle Portugaise.

Almost 5 metres tall, with spreading thornless stems and large semi-glossy medium-green foliage, it blooms prolifically with flushes throughout the season. Large long pointed buds, borne in  small clusters, open to slightly fragrant, medium to large (up to 9 cm across), semi-double, light pink blooms.BlogTeasReszd2014-10-25 09.45.39Please note: While all the photographs of the Tea Roses mentioned above are mine, not all the roses are! I have specified the Tea Roses growing in my garden in the text. Next week, we will be discussing Rustons Roses and the Renmark Rose Festival, but first, I have an extra post on Thursday, my response to a surprise Blue Sky Tag!

Captivating Chinas

The late 18th century was a time of great excitement: the discovery and introduction of new plant species from plant hunting expeditions to the Orient and the opening up of trade with the East, with the giant clippers of the British East India Company plying their way across the seas back home with cases of tea imports; fancy furniture, cane and lacquer ware from China and Japan and exotic plants and roses like Rosa chinensis (though it used to be called Rosa indica, meaning ‘of China’) in the newly-developed Wardian cases. Native to the Guizhou, Hubei and Sichuan Provinces of China, Rosa chinensis has been cultivated in China since 3000 BC, its blooms depicted in early Chinese paintings of the 10th century. Chinese garden roses display considerable hybridity from this long period of cultivation.

The introduction of China roses in the 1790s changed the Western rose world forever, as they were so different to the Old European roses. Not only were they a different shape with a lighter airy growth and sparser foliage, but their blooms had a different scent and colour and flowered continuously, and their introduction opened up a whole new set of genes to be used in rose breeding, resulting in an explosion in the number of different rose varieties: Portands, Bourbons, Noisettes, Hybrid Perpetuals, Tea Roses and eventually the modern Hybrid Tea roses. Little wonder that European gardeners were so entranced and captivated by these new roses! The photo below is Cécile Brünner, one of my favourite China roses!BlogChinasReszd20%IMG_0207 The early Chinas or the four Stud Chinas, as they became known, were:

Old Blush China , also known as the Monthly Rose or Parsons’ Pink and Pallida (after its parents). It was brought to Europe in 1751, but introduced to Britain by Sir Joseph Banks in 1789, after bringing it back from Canton, China (photo below);

Slater’s Crimson China, also known as the Bengal Rose, introduced in 1792;

Hume’s Blush Teascented  China 1809;   and

Park’s Yellow Teascented China 1824

See : http://www.vicstaterosegarden.com.au/about-our-roses/rose-stories for more on their arrival.

Unfortunately, these roses are not cold-hardy, so while they thrived in the warmer parts of Europe, like France and Italy, they remained small (60 to 90 cm in height, compared to over 1.8 metres in warmer areas) or had to be grown in greenhouses and conservatories in colder areas. BlogChinasReszd2014-10-25 09.36.08

Description :

Twiggy irregular bushes, 1 to 2 metres tall with a light branching habit, purple-brown stems and few thorns;

Glossy, smooth, pointed, pinnate foliage, which has red tints when young; The leaves have 3 to 5 leaflets, 2.5 to 6 cm long and 1 to 3 cm wide.

Continuous flowering of dainty blooms with distinct bright colours: deep reds; maroon; pink; white, as well as warm yellow; saffron; salmon and orange. The colour intensifies with age, rather than fading to pale like the Old European roses. The hips are red and 1 to 2 cm long. The rose photographed below is Perle d’Or.BlogChinasReszd2014-10-27 14.04.10

Cultivation :

China roses will do best with fertile, well-manured soil and a sheltered warm north-facing (Southern Hemisphere) position, protected from the wind. They dislike hard pruning, so only remove dead and dying growth. The rose below is Old Blush.BlogChinasReszd2014-10-19 13.45.46Species:

Rosa chinensis var. spontanea

The wild form of the rose, it was first seen by Dr Augustine Henry in 1884 and described by him in The Gardener’s Chronicle in 1902. It was found again in 1983 by Mr Mikinori Ogisu, of Tokyo, in the Chinese Province of Sichuan and was photographed in the Royal National Rose Society’s Journal, The Rose, accompanied by an article by Graham Thomas in September 1986.

Growing into trees up to 3 metres tall, it bears blooms 5 to 6 cm wide, which vary in colour from pink to crimson (the colour being darker in areas of higher altitude).

Old Blush or Parson’s Pink 1781    Parsons’ Pink China x R. odorata ‘Pallida’

Still quite common, Old Blush is a dainty, upright, robust, almost thornless shrub or short climber with dainty, small, loosely informal, pale silvery-pink (deepening with age), continuous flowers in small clusters. The strong scent has been described as being similar to a sweet pea. It was brought to Sweden in 1752 by Peter Osbeck, was growing in Holland in 1781 and introduced in England in 1789. It was found growing in a garden at Rickmansworth, in the garden of Mr Parsons in 1793.  Often the first rose to start flowering in Spring and the last to finish in Winter, it produces flowers continuously through the Summer, hence its other name: the Monthly Rose. While usually growing to 1.2 metres, it can be considerably taller (up to 3 metres against a warm wall) in favourable conditions.BlogChinasReszd2014-10-27 12.51.10

Slater’s Crimson China, also called  the Bengal Rose, Semperflorens and  Old Crimson China

Also known as the Bengal Rose, because it arrived in tea clippers from Calcutta, India, in 1792. Seldom seen today, this rose was important , as it introduced rich pure reds into a gene pool, where the crimsons invariably turned to purples and mauves. Its flowers are truly single, 9 cm across, blood red, fading to crimson, and have a slight tea fragrance. A small rounded bush 1 to 1.2 metres tall in Britain, it will grow to twice the height in hotter climates. It needs a warm sheltered position to do well and prefers warmer climates, where it will flower 12 months of the year.BlogChinasReszd2014-10-19 13.14.31Hume’s Blush Teascented China     R. indica odorata

Discovered by John Reeves in 1808, but named after rosarian, Abraham Hume, this rose was sent from the Fa Tee Nursery in Canton in 1810. The fully double blooms are a creamy flesh pink, fading to creamy white,  with a pink reverse and a strong tea fragrance and are borne continuously from Spring to Autumn. The original hybrid introduced to the West may very well be extinct, as it disappeared from commerce in the 19th century.

Park’s Yellow Teascented China  R. indica ochroleuca, now assigned Rosa odorata var. pseudindica

Named after plant collector, John Damper Parks, who discovered this cloudy sulphur-yellow, scented rose in 1824 on a Royal Horticultural Society expedition to China, it is thought to be the result of a cross between R. chinensis and R. gigantea, from which it inherited its larger, thicker and more waxy petals. The yellow tea roses of the early 20th century were the result of crossing this rose with Fortune’s Double Yellow, a Tea Rose with yellow, buff and red blooms, found by Robert Fortune on the wall of Chinese mandarin’s garden in Ningpo, Northern China, 1845, while a cross of Parks Yellow Tea-scented China with Noisettes produced the Tea- Noisettes. It is likely that the original was lost over 100 years ago. According to Mr. George Gordon (1806-1879), Superintendent of the Gardens of the Horticultural Society at Chiswick near London, ‘Rosa indica ochroleuca‘ was extinct before 1842. The Tea-scented Yellow China, which was widely distributed, was ‘Rosa indica flavescens‘, a seedling of Hume’s Blush. The pale sulfur yellow original was a small shrub, that rebloomed, set hips, and had only a moderate Tea scent. The rose presently in commerce under this name is creamy white, once-blooming, strongly Tea-scented and does not set hips. Here is a photo from the Victorian State Rose Garden at Werribee Park, Victoria:BlogChinasReszd2014-10-19 13.25.27Now for a discussion of the modern day China roses available.

Cécile Brünner   Sweetheart Rose/ Mignon and the Maltese Rose

A delightful little rose, bred by Pernet-Ducher, France, 1881, it is a cross between a Polyantha rose and Tea rose, Mme de Tartas.  It is often confused with the taller Bloomfield Abundance, but the buds on the latter have long sepals, an identifying feature.BlogChinasReszd20%IMG_1822 Cécile Brünner is only short (120 cm tall and 60 cm wide) with spindly, thornless, compact growth; sparse, semi-glossy, dark-green foliage; and perfectly scrolled, delicate soft pink blooms in clusters in Summer. The blooms are popular with florists for use in corsages and buttonholes.BlogChinasReszd20%IMG_1944 There is a white form, as well as a climbing sport, Climbing Cécile Brünner, which is much more vigorous, reaching 7.5 metres tall and 6 metres wide, growing into trees and scrambling over arches. It is tolerant of most soils and is well-endowed with dense, dark-green foliage, which often hides the tiny shell-pink flowers. The photo below is our Climbing Cécile Brünner over the arch leading to our old guest cottage in Armidale. We have planted another specimen in our new garden at Candelo over the entrance arch on the lane, leading to our front door, and already it has covered one side of the arch totally.BlogChinasReszd50%Image (228)

Bloomfield Abundance  (Spray Cécile Brünner in the USA)

A cross between Sylvia and Dorothy Page Roberts, bred by Thomas, USA in 1920 and one of the largest bush Chinas at 1.8 metres tall and 1.2 metres wide. Smooth purplish-brown, often spindly wood; dark-green smooth foliage and large well-spaced clusters of tiny compact shell-pink flowers on long stems. Long sepals extending beyond the petals, while those of Cécile Brünner are shorter and fold back to the receptacle.BlogChinasReszd50%Image (166)Perle d’Or (Yellow Cécile Brünner ) Dubreuil, France, 1884

A cross between a Multiflora seedling and Mme Falcot, it can grow over 1.8 metres, but is usually more like 1.2 metres tall. Very similar to Cécile Brünner, it has dense growth, twiggy, almost thornless stems, ample rich dark green foliage and clusters of spaced small orange-buff yellow, turning a softer peachy pink, flowers with a slight fruity fragrance.BlogChinasReszd2014-10-27 14.04.06Hermosa (Armosa)

A hybrid between a China Rose and another unknown parent, bred by Marcheseau, France in 1840. The growth is branching and more sturdy than most Chinas with numerous, small, grey-green leaves and it bears small, mid-pink, slightly fragrant globular cupped flowers continuously through Summer.BlogChinasReszd2014-10-19 13.45.46 The blooms have a Bourbon-like appearance, though are smaller and more delicate.BlogChinasReszd2014-10-19 13.45.51BlogChinasReszd2014-10-27 12.53.24Mutabilis (Tipo Ideale)

I love this rose, whose beautiful light single papery, loose blooms of variable colours remind me of a host of butterflies.BlogChinasReszd50%april 029 Copper-yellow pointed buds open to single copper-yellow flowers, which turn to pink then crimson with age.BlogChinasReszd20%IMG_1983 A dense twiggy plant, with plum-red shoots and glossy dark green leaves (juvenile leaves are bronze), British descriptions of this rose claim its measurements as 90 cm tall by 60 cm wide, though David Austin has seen 2.5 metre high shrubs against a warm sheltered wall. It performs very well in the warmer climate of Australia, reaching over 3 metres in Walter Duncan’s Heritage Garden in Clare, South Australia. La Landriana, a garden created by Marchesa Lavinia Taverna at Ardea, near Rome, has over 300 specimens of this beautiful rose, covering two acres. See: https://www.romecentral.com/en/luoghi-segreti-vicino-roma-giardini-della-landriana/. What a sight to behold this valley  in full bloom!!! Given to Henri Correvon of Geneva by Prince Ghilberto Borromeo of Isola Bella, Italy, in 1896, there is little known about the origins of this rose.blogvsrg50reszdnov-2010-253

Viridiflora    R. viridiflora

Introduced in 1855, this small rose is a sport from Old Blush China, to which it is very similar in growth. A very unusual rose, the petals have been replaced by numerous green sepals, hence its other name, the Green Rose. The bracts also have rust-red tinges, which turn purplish-brown with age, and it’s a very interesting rose to use in floral arrangements.BlogChinasReszd2014-10-19 13.44.18

Use of China Roses

In Chinese medicine, all parts of the rose are used. The leaves and roots are used to treat arthritis, boils and coughs, while the hips are applied to sprains, ulcers and wounds. The flower buds are used to treat dysmenorrhoea, poor circulation, swelling and stomach pains. The other interesting fact, which I discovered in my research, is that China roses can be used as a natural acid-base indicator. The rose petals are soaked in hot water for half an hour until the water turns pink. When added to acids, the colour turns a magenta red, while mixing it with a base will turn the colour to a yellowish-green or green. See:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SggBRVQ0gtg and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fDiU5-CKbY4.

Next month, we will discuss some of the different types of new roses available to the Victorians after the introduction of the Chinas: the Boursaults, Portlands, Bourbons and Hybrid Perpetuals.