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.

 

Sumptuous Centifolias and Mosses

The final group of Old European Roses to be discussed, the heavy, globular, cupped, once-flowering fragrant blooms of the Centifolia Rose make it the quintessential Old Rose! They have been portrayed in art, textiles, wallpaper, postcards, decorative papers, furniture…the list is endless! Please note: The first four photos of this post are courtesy of Pixabay (https://pixabay.com). vintage-1077954_1280R. x centifolia, also known as the 100-petalled Rose or the Cabbage Rose, was once thought to be a species, but DNA studies have revealed that it is a complex hybrid, whose genetic background includes genes of R. gallica; R. phoenicia; R. moschata; R. canina and R. damascena. It first appeared in the late 16th century and over 200 varieties (including the mosses) were bred in the period between 1600 and 1800, only 22 varieties of Centifolias now commonly available. victorian-christmas-1834247_1280 They were much featured in Dutch and Flemish still-life paintings of the time (http://scvrs.homestead.com/roseart2.html), as well as later works by Renoir and Van Gogh, hence two more titles: the Holland Rose and Rose des Peintures. See: http://scvrs.homestead.com/RosesInArt3.html. painting-1654823_1280 It is also the rose featured in Victorian wallpapers, textiles, curtains, chintz sofas and tapestry bags. The first photo is a decorative paper, based on a textile printing pattern from the 1880s to the 1920s. BlogCentifoliasReszd20%IMG_0307fabric-1325745_1280BlogCentifoliasReszd20%IMG_0308 Its commercial production in Morocco and France to produce rose oil for the perfumery industry, especially in the area around Grasse, has given it its final name, the Provence Rose. There is even a special annual Rose Festival for Centifolia roses in Grasse. See: http://www.cntraveler.com/stories/2015-04-05/french-town-has-the-worlds-best-roses-grasse and http://www.villadesparfums.com/grasse-rose-festival-8-10-may-2015/. This year’s festival is from the 12th to the 14th May 2017. See: http://www.frenchriviera-tourism.com/CALENDAR/expo-rose-grasse-N4fiche_FMAPAC0060000119-rub_103.html. It is also possible to visit a Centifolia rose farm at Domaine de Manon, Plascassier, near Grasse. See: https://www.lonelyplanet.com/france/grasse/attractions/domaine-de-manon/a/poi-sig/1025273/359254 and http://www.le-domaine-de-manon.com/index-page=the-centifolia-rose.php.html. The fragrant petals of these beautiful May roses are also used to make potpourri. BlogCentifoliasReszd2014-10-19 13.11.08Centifolias have produced a number of different variants or sports (mutations), including Moss Roses; dwarf Centifolias and striped and spotted varieties of Centifolias. In R. x centifolia muscosa, a mutation of the glands has produced a thick covering of green or reddish-brown , resinous hairs (moss) on the stems, buds and sepals. The moss covering is very sticky and balsam-scented. This unusual feature made them very popular with Victorian gardeners, who loved anything different or exotic. Victorian catalogues listed 30 to 40 varieties of Moss Roses. More later…

Description :

Centifolias are lax, open shrubs, 1.5 metres to 2 metres tall, with long, drooping, very thorny canes, which bow under the weight of the blooms. They need lots of room to spread out, though can benefit from staking or training.

Their large, rounded, drooping, coarse, grey-green pinnate leaves have 5 to 7 leaflets.

The flowers are very distinctive- huge globular deeply-cupped flowers (up to 10.2 cm wide), made up of numerous tissue-thin, overlapping, tightly-packed petals. Usually pink, with some whites, a few dark red-purples and lavender-violets (eg Tour de Malakoff) and a few spotted or striped varieties, the once-flowering blooms are highly fragrant with a distinctive Centifolia fragrance (clean and sweet with a hint of honey) and their abundance makes a wonderful display in Summer.The hips are insignificant.BlogCentifoliasReszd2014-10-19 13.11.30 Centifolias are extremely hardy and require little pruning, except the removal of very old wood after flowering. They can be shortened by 1/3 growth in late Winter. They like full sun and plenty of space and air circulation to prevent mildew and black spot. There are some dwarf hybrids, which are more dense and upright,  with smaller leaves and flowers.

R. x centifolia is a graceful, lax, open shrub, 1.8 metres tall and 1.5 metres wide with large coarse leaves and 7.6 cm wide very double, heavy, highly fragrant, deep pink globular blooms, borne singly or in small clusters on long stems. See the last two photos, as well as the photo of the shrub below.BlogCentifoliasReszd2014-10-19 13.10.59Fantin Latour: Named after the French artist and well known rose painter, Henri Fantin-Latour (1836-1904), this rose has an unknown lineage. It is a well-formed shrub, 1.5 metres tall and 1.2 metres wide, with almost smooth, arching canes and smoother, rounder, dark green leaves. It grows well in a bed or border and has a relatively short blooming period in late Spring. On either side of the entrance arch to our harp-shaped herb garden in Armidale, we grew two specimens, from which we took cuttings for our new Candelo garden, where it is growing on the shed fence next to Bourbon rose, Mme Isaac Pereire.

BlogCentifoliasReszd50%Image (225)BlogCentifoliasReszd50%Image (226) It produces large clusters of very double, cupped, delicately-fragrant, pale blush pink blooms, 5 to 7.6 cm wide, which flatten out with a swirl of petals and a button eye. It is very hardy with moderate disease-resistance.BlogCentifoliasReszd50%Image (185)Sports of the Centifolia roses include :

R. x centifolia bullata is another sport, with fewer thorns and very large crinkly leaves, hence its name the Lettuce-leaved Rose; and

R. x centifolia variegata or Village Maid, a striped variant;

Rose de Meaux, a miniature Centifolia, 60 cm high and wide, with tiny foliage and tiny 3.8 cm multi-petalled, rosy-pink dianthus-like blooms;  There is also a white form.

And  the Moss Roses with a wide range of sizes, habits and colours from white to rose-red, due to their mixed breeding. Hybridization with crimson Chinas over the years has produced some deep crimson mosses, a colour lacking in their Centifolia parents, as well as some slight repeat-blooming. Today, there are 32 types commonly available, though Peter Beales lists 52 different types.

Nuits de Young has dark mossing; very dark maroon-purple, highly fragrant blooms and a tendency to sucker and spread.BlogCentifoliasReszd20%IMG_9722Mme Louis Lévêque is a small upright shrub 1.2 metres tall and 90 cm wide, with long, pointed, bright green leaves and bright pink mossy buds, which open to 10 cm large, soft warm pink, full cupped, silky  flowers, which fade to a lighter pink. There is some repeat flowering later in the season. Unfortunately, the buds ball (do not open) in wet weather.

Alfred de Dalmas, also known as Mousseline, 1855, is another repeat-blooming moss with a short tidy growth (90 cm tall and 60 cm wide) and was bred from the Portland Damasks. It blooms continuously from Summer to late Autumn with creamy-pink, semi-double scented flowers.

Chapeau de Napoléon, the most famous Moss of all! Found on a convent wall in Fribourg, Switzerland in 1820, R. x centifolia cristata, also known as the Crested Moss, was introduced to commerce by Vibert.BlogCentifoliasReszd2014-11-22 14.26.37 Identical to R. centifolia, except for the mossy growth on the sepals, it is a tidy medium shrub 1.5 metres tall and 1.2 metres wide, which blooms only once in Summer, but over an extended period, lasting  several weeks. The heavily mossed, feathery looking buds have extended calyces, giving them the appearance of Napoléon’s cocked tricorn hat, hence its name.BlogCentifoliasReszd50%Image (172) The buds open to fully double deep silvery pink, highly fragrant  cabbage like blooms. It is moderately vigorous and disease-resistant, but may require some support.BlogCentifoliasReszd50%Image (173)With the introduction of China Roses from the East to Europe, rose breeding started in earnest and there was literally an explosion in the number of different rose varieties available to the Victorian gardener. Next month, we will look at China Roses in detail and the reason they caused such excitement and made such an impact in the Western world.

Elegant Albas

Once considered a separate species, Albas are now thought to be very ancient hybrids of unknown origin, though it is suspected that they are the result of natural hybridization between  Rosa canina (similar foliage, fruit and stems) and Rosa damascena. Grown in Ancient Rome, predominantly for its medicinal qualities, Albas were introduced into England by the Romans before 100 AD, where they quickly naturalized. The Alba rose became the symbol for the House of York during the Wars of the Roses in the 15th century, gaining the name ‘The White Rose of York’, as well as bearing other titles : ‘ The Jacobite Rose’, ‘Bonnie Prince Charlie’s Rose’, ‘Cheshire Rose’ and  ‘Great Double White’. Gerard grew R. alba in his garden at Long Acre in 1597. Albas were widely grown during the Middle Ages for their medicinal properties. Botticelli painted Alba maxima in his famous painting ‘Venus’ in 1485 and this fampous old rose was also the subject of Dutch masterpieces in the 18th century. At the time of Dupont (1813), there were only 10 Albas known, but Jean-Paul Vibert grew over 70 different types of Albas in 1824.  Today, there are less than 20 – Peter Beales lists 16 Albas in his book ‘Classic Roses’.

Description

Also known as Tree Roses, due to their vigorous tall upright growth to over 1.8 metres. They have lax, arching stems and distinctive grey-green (sometimes described as blue-green) foliage with grey scentless leaflets (an identifying feature, as other roses have scented leaves). Once blooming in Spring and early Summer, they have few-flowered clusters of highly fragrant, white and blush to soft pastel pink blooms. The scent has been described as refined and even as a mix of spicy apples, white hyacinth and honey! These roses are the toughest and most disease-resistant of all roses. They are Winter hardy, mildew-free and tolerate more shade and root competition than other roses, so are good near trees or on a south-facing wall (Southern Hemisphere). They still require at least 3 to 4 hours of direct sunlight to bloom. The photo below is Celeste.blogelegantalbasreszd50image-191I used to grow both Alba Semi-Plena and Alba Maxima in my garden and I loved their tall growth, attractive leaves and simple pure white flowers. Both can revert to each other, Alba Maxima  basically looking like a fuller version of Semi-Plena.  Maxima is one of the oldest roses and is a healthy upright tall shrub, 1.8 metres high and 1.2 metres wide. With healthy grey green foliage with a blue glow, it bears upright clusters of 6 to 8 pure white to creamy white, very double, fragrant blooms, with the scent of damask and citrus, followed by oval hips in Autumn.blogelegantalbasreszd20%2014-10-27-13-07-44 Semi-Plena, also known as Rosa x alba suaveolens or R. x alba nivea, is taller (2.5 metres high by 1.5 metres wide) with matte grey-green leaves and sweetly scented, semi-double, pure white blooms with pronounced stamens and good Autumn fruit, which look like large orange Dog Rose hips. It can be traced back to the 14th century.blogelegantalbasreszd50image-210blogelegantalbasreszd50image-212Another very old Alba (pre-15th century) with a host of interesting names is Great Maiden’s Blush, also called ‘Cuisse de Nymphe’, ‘Incarnata’, ‘La Virginale’, ‘La Séduisante’ and ‘La Royale’. They are 1.5 metres tall with arching, almost thornless branches and blue-grey foliage. Creamy white or white buds open to loosely-double, pale blush pink flowers, fading white again, with a very refined pefume. Cuisse de Nymphe émue is the name given to more richly coloured clones of this rose. I grew this rose in my old garden, but now grow Maiden’s Blush 1797, also referred to as Small Maiden’s Blush, a slightly smaller sport of Great Maiden’s Blush, both in stature (1.2 metres tall by 0.9 metres wide) and flower size, but otherwise looking much the same. Because I cannot find any old photos of Great Maiden’s Blush, I have included this link to Peter Beales’ site, as it was one of his favourite roses from since he was a young boy: https://www.classicroses.co.uk/roses/maiden-s-blush-great-shrub-rose.html , and maybe next Spring, I will be able to insert a decent photo of my Small Maiden’s Blush blooms!

Another favourite ancient alba is Celeste or Celestial (1.8 metres tall and 1.2 metres wide). I love her semi-double, beautifully scented, light pink flowers and leaden grey foliage.blogelegantalbasreszd20img_9253blogelegantalbasreszd50image-190blogelegantalbasreszd50image-177I have never grown Mme Plantier (1835), a hybrid between an Alba and a Noisette. It has a sprawling mound of compact growth; pale green foliage; and creamy-white, sweetly fragrant, small pompom-like blooms with a pointed green eye in the centre.blogelegantalbasreszd20img_9256Again, because this is not a wonderful photo, though it does give a good idea of its sprawling growth habit (!),  I have included a link to this post: http://hedgerowrose.com/rose-gardening/2012/09/06/growing-madame-plantier-or-the-brides-rose/, which also demonstrates the similarities and differences of this lovely rose to Damask rose, Mme Hardy.

Next month, we will be looking at the Centifolias and Moss roses, the final group of Old European roses, their heavy globular blooms adored by the Dutch still-life painters and the start of a rose breeding in earnest! Next week, I will be posting about the roses in the cottage gardens of Gamble Cottage, South Australia, and Ziebell’s Farmouse and Heide in Victoria.

Barossa Old Rose Repository and the Twentieth Century and Heritage Rose Gardens of the Waite Institute

South Australia is a wonderful spot to visit if you love Old Roses! In last month’s post, we explored the roses of the Mt Lofty Botanic Garden and the Adelaide Botanic Garden. In this post, we will be visiting the Barossa Old Rose Repository and the Twentieth Century and Heritage Rose Gardens of the Waite Institute, two very different gardens, but united in their love of old roses. We were fortunate enough to visit both rose gardens twice – our first time on our way home from our camping trip around Australia and our second visit as part of a specific rose holiday to South Australia in October 2014. Please note that the photos are interspersed with the text on a general basis and are not necessarily pictures of roses mentioned in the prior text, unless where specifically indicated.

Barossa Old Rose Repository

Hannay Crescent, off Murray St

Angaston, SA 5353

Free and open dawn till dusk.

http://images.shoutwiki.com/roses/2/24/Barossa_Old_Rose_Repository.pdf

This garden is quite special, as it is the only one of its kind in Australia, being a repository of locally-grown, pre-loved and forgotten roses.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-09-53Established in 2003 on a small triangular section of level land behind the village green, the garden is bordered by a creek (with a small wooden footbridge to a former orchard and vegetable garden), a tributary and Hannay Crescent. The first 24 roses were planted on their own roots in October 2003 by the newly-formed Barossa and Beyond regional group of Heritage Roses in Australia Inc.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-13-12 One hundred-year old redgum posts were salvaged from Mader’s Hayshed, Flaxman’s Valley, after it blew down in a storm in 2004.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-24-35blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-24-59 Eleven posts were installed in July 2005, with chain swags between them for climbers and ramblers to scramble over. In 2007, an interpretive sign was installed, a brochure produced, two jacaranda trees were planted in the lawn and funds raised for a wooden table and benches.blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7364The garden was developed and is maintained by the Barossa and Beyond regional group of Heritage Roses in Australia Inc. Their aim was to find and preserve the old roses of the Barossa region, which were at danger of being lost, because of the increased use of herbicides to control roadside and cemetery vegetation, and to educate the public about the importance of old rose conservation for future generations. One of the founding members and current coordinator of the group is Old Rose conservator, Patricia Toolan, who was given a Churchill Fellowship in 2002 to study techniques and strategies for the preservation of old rose and plant varieties in cemeteries overseas (United Kingdom, France, Italy, Germany and the United States of America). She has written an article about the development of the Barossa Old Rose Repository, titled ‘The Scent of Memory’, which was published in Volume 19, Number 2 (September/October 2007; pages 16 – 19) of Australian Garden History (for more information, see: http://www.gardenhistorysociety.org.au/category/detail/132). She also supplied a number of the roses, grown on their own roots, in the repository.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-12-57Many of the roses in the repository have been propagated from cuttings, taken from ‘mother plants’, which were brought to Australia by the early German and English settlers of the region. These mother plants have been found in cemeteries, along roadsides, in vineyards and on farms, and in the gardens of old homesteads and cottages. They include rose bushes, ramblers and climbing roses. All of them are once-flowering only, their peak being from Spring to early Summer, and all have wonderful stories to tell…!!!  Note: The letters ‘ROR’ stand  for’ Renamed Old Rose’. I rather like the RORs– they convey such a sense of history!blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-16-23blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-11-17Mrs. Heggie’s Red Tea ROR, Almerta Orchard Pink ROR and Fortune’s Double Yellow 1845 (see photo below) all came from the Almerta Homestead, a small vineyard owned by the Heggie family in Flaxman’s Valley in the early 1900s.blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7358 Lady Hillingdon 1910; Cardinal de Richelieu 1840 (Miss Hatch’s Gallica ROR) : see photos below; and Miss Hatch’s Cabbage ROR (also known as the Habermann Cemetery HP Mengler Grave ROR and Gomersal Cemetery HP ROR) were propagated from cuttings from an old cottage garden in the main street of neighbouring town, Nurioopta, belonging to a Miss Hatch, who died in 1997.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-13-08blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-11-54The Ebenezer Cemetery Pink ROR came from cuttings taken from a sickly sprayed rose (which has since died) on an old grave and is thought to be the Hybrid Perpetual, Caroline de Sansal, 1849. Anna Olivier 1872 is another rose propagated from a very old rose, growing on the side of the old butchery building at an early Barossa property at Krondorf and which has also since died.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-17-05blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-16-40The ABC Howard Quarry Yellow Tea (possibly the Tea Rose, Souvenir de Pierre Notting 1902) was found intertwined with honeysuckle in an abandoned old garden near Angaston. Here are 3 photos of this lovely yellow rose below (Cardinal de Richelieu: bottom left corner of Photo 1).blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-22-41blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-23-20blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-10-05 The Anlaby Apricot Rambler and Anlaby Station Yellow Hybrid Tea ROR were sourced from Anlaby Station (Kapunda, Barossa), the oldest Merino stud in South Australia.blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-14-17There were 63 roses in the Barossa Old Rose Repository when Patricia Toolan wrote her article in 2007,  including :

Gloire de Rosomanes 1825

General Jacqueminot 1853

Comtesse de Labarthe, also known as Duchesse de Brabant and Countess Bertha 1857 (South Rhine Cemetery Pink Tea ROR)

Mme Alfred Carrière 1875

Mlle. Augustine Guinoisseau 1889

Maman Cochet 1892

Turner’s Crimson Rambler 1893

Climbing Mme Caroline Testout 1901 (Springton Deserted House Back Drive ROR)

William R Smith 1908 (Edna Stapleton’s Cochet Tea ROR)  and

Mrs Herbert Stevens 1910 (Mr Heath’s White Tea ROR).blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7361blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-23-33blogbarossawaitereszd20%2014-10-27-10-16-54For more photos of roses at the Barossa Old Rose Repository, it is worth looking at their Facebook site.

Twentieth Century and Heritage Rose Gardens

Waite Historic Precinct

Fullarton Rd, between Cross Rd and Claremont Avenue

Urrbrae SA 5063

7km south of CBD Adelaide

Open dawn till dusk every day except fire bans. Free entry.

http://www.adelaide.edu.au/waite-historic/gardens/rosegarden/

Another wonderful spot to enjoy Old Roses, this garden traces the development of the rose from 1900 to today and includes over 200 varieties of roses, with roses significant to each decade.blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7453 It is located at Urrbrae House, the original home of Peter Waite, a prominent pastoralist, who bequeathed the property to the University of Adelaide on his death in 1923, to be used for agricultural research and a public park. I have already discussed the Waite Historic Precinct in my post on Education Gardens in May 2016 (see : https://candeloblooms.com/2016/05/10/favourite-gardens-regularly-open-to-the-public-education-gardens/) so for now, I will be focusing solely on the rose garden.BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9223blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7442The original rose garden of Urrbrae House was to the west of the current site and included a long rose arbour, built from timber posts and metal tube work, which extended from the house to Claremont Avenue and was covered with pale yellow, double climbing roses, as well as a rose border on the front lawn of the house. While the gold rose below is not the original climbing rose on the arbour, it is still a beautiful rose, which graces the corner of the house.blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9229 blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7448By 1956, the garden was overgrown with Kikuya grass and had deteriorated badly with many of the roses suffering wilt and dieback. Only two of the original roses  from Peter Waites’ time survived: a hedge of Cécile Brünner and a Mme Alfred Carrière, both near the house.blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9232 In 1959, a new trial rose garden was established to the north-east of Urrbrae House by the SA Rose Society under the instigation of Alex Ross to replace the diseased roses, but this second garden was replaced by a new teaching wing in 1972.BlogEducationgardens25%ReszdIMG_7454

In 1991, to celebrate the centenary of Urrbrae House (1891), a new rose garden was designed by Deane Ross and was developed in collaboration with Ross Roses and the Heritage Roses in Australia Society Inc.blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9225 Located on its present site south of Urrbrae House, and incorporating the original rose arbour, this first stage of the Twentieth Century  and Heritage Rose Garden, opened in 1993, has a formal layout and features earlier varieties of heritage roses. Roses were donated from Ross Roses and those that were no longer commercially available were sourced from England, America and New Zealand.blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9233

I love the circular  garden, which inspired our own Soho Bed.BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9255BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9261The long rose arbour and other arches are equally impressive, especially during peak flowering season in October/ November, although there are roses between September and May. The 4th photo is Cornelia (UK, 1925) and the 5th photo Mermaid (UK, 1917).BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9268BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9289BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9280BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9238blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9270The second stage of the garden (northern end), opened in 1996, was developed by Vieturs Cielens and Susan Phillips. It has a more informal, contemporary design with low mounds, ponds and an early 18th century cast-iron fountain called ‘Temperance’. Another structure in the rose garden is an armillary sphere sundial, made by Margaret Folkard and John Ward, of Sundials Australia.BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9281BlogEducationgardens20%ReszdIMG_9282Here are a few more photos of specific roses in the garden in order: Constance Spry (Shrub Rose, UK, 1961); Hiawatha (Rambler, USA, 1904); Sunlit (Hybrid Tea, Australia, 1937); Peace, also known as Mme A. Meilland (Hybrid Tea, France, 1935); General MacArthur (Hybrid Tea, USA, 1905); and Papa Meilland (Hybrid Tea, France, 1963).blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9236blogbarossawaitereszd20img_9288blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7445blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7455blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7443blogbarossawaitereszd25img_7452

Divine Damasks

Rosa × damascena, more commonly known as the Damask Rose, or sometimes as the Rose of Castile, is a rose hybrid, whose parents include Rosa gallica, Rosa moschata and Rosa fedtschenkoana. While thought to have originated in the Middle East, it is now thought that it developed in the foothills of Central Asia. It has been cultivated since Ancient Egyptian times and the Autumn Damask is thought to have been the Four Seasons Rose of Paestum, described by ancient Roman writers. Crusader, Robert de Brie, is credited with introducing the rose to Europe from Syria in 1254, hence its naming after the capital of Syria, Damascus. Others suggest that the Romans brought the rose with them to Britain. The rose below is a very famous old Damask called York and Lancaster.blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-39-08 There were two types originally. The Summer Damask, a light pink rose, which only flowered in Summer; and the Autumn Damask, R. damascena bifera, also known as Quatre Saisons, which is a rather prickly shrub, with spreading growth and leaves running right up to and enclosing medium pink, loosely-double flowers, borne singly or in small clusters, with a moderate fragrance and some repeat-flowering into Autumn. In fact, the Autumn Damask is the only Old European rose to flower more than once and is used for making potpourri.blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9496 There is also a white sport, Quatre Saisons Blanc Mousseux, which is very similar to Quatre Saisons, except for the white colour and the fine brownish-green moss on both stems and buds, as is very obvious in these photos below. The stems are very prickly like its parent.blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-07-38blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-07-43blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-09-08blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-19-13-09-19 A symbol of love and beauty, the Damask Rose is highly fragrant with a distinctive Damask fragrance and is grown commercially for rose oil (both rose otto and rose absolute), rose water and other culinary products. Bulgaria (especially the area around Kazanlak in the Valley of the Roses) and Turkey are the largest producers of rose oil, which is used in the perfume industry. Bulgaria produces Bulgarian rose oil or Bulgarian rose otto, while in Turkey, it is sold as rose oil, Turkish rose otto and R. damascena attar. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbDrwg-HWzw.  Rose oil is also produced in Afghanistan (near Kabul), India and France. This is a photo of Kazanlik, the rose grown extensively in Bulgaria since 1420.blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-178 The Iranian physician, Avicenna, is credited with the discovery of the process for extracting rose water from the petals back in the early 11th century. Rose water is used extensively in Indian, Persian and Middle Eastern cuisine for flavouring meat and chicken dishes, jam, yoghurt, icecream, rice pudding, and even Turkish delight and Turrón, a Valencian nougat. It is also used as a skin toner and in the treatment of depression. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEA0HzeQ-vo.

The fresh petals can be used as a garnish  or can be preserved in sugar (gulkand, which is used in Ayurvedic medicine). Rose powder is an ingredient in the Moroccan spice mixture, Ras el Hanout, (http://www.anediblemosaic.com/ras-el-hanout-moroccan-spice-mix/) and there is even a herbal tea made from the petals called zhourat. See: https://mountoftabbouleh.wordpress.com/2016/09/10/i-found-a-perfect-tea-recipe-in-lebanon/.

Damask roses are also important, because of their major role in the breeding of a host of new rose families, including Centifolias, Bourbons, Portlands and Hybrid Perpetual roses.

Description:

Deciduous tall shrub, up to 1.5 m height, with a sprawling, lax growth habit and informal shape.

Stems are covered in stout, curved prickles and stiff bristles.

Leaves are pinnate, usually with 5 leaflets only; are elongated and pointy; have a grey-green colour; and are downy underneath.

The buds have elongated sepals, a distinguishing feature of this rose family, as can be seen in the photo of Kazanlik below.

Flowers are relatively small; vary in colour from light to moderate pink and light red; grow in small to medium clusters; and are highly fragrant with a distinctive Damask fragrance. All are once-flowering, except for the Autumn Damask, which has some repeat-blooming into Autumn.

The hips are bright red, long, thin and bristly.blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-189Types of Damasks

There are 19 different Damasks listed in Peter Beales’ book, of which four are very famous. Two are named after the place where they are extensively grown. Kazanlik, also known as Trigintipetala, is an ancient rose, which has been cultivated for many years in the rose fields of Kazanlak in Bulgaria and is used to make attar of roses and potpourri. See: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3lJAXtccPLs and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdEeEp9kgUo. The lax growth does better with support; the foliage is dark green; and the double, shaggy flowers are a warm pink and very fragrant.blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-27-12-50-29blogdivinedamasksreszd20%2014-10-27-12-49-46

Ispahan, or the Rose d’Isfahan, grows wild on the hillsides of Iran and is named after the city of Isfahan, 340 km south of Tehran, Iran, an area once renowned for its gardens and roses, where this particular rose was apparently discovered in a garden. Garden designer, Norah Lindsay (1873–1948), is credited with introducing it to the United Kingdom.  Ispahan is also extensively cultivated in Turkey. It has a very long flowering season, being one of the first old roses to bloom and the last to continue. Its large, semi-double flowers are a rich warm pink, hold their shape and colour well and are very fragrant. They last well as a cut flower too.blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-203blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-184blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9259 York and Lancaster, R. damascena versicolour, a sport of Kazanlik, is another old Damask from before 1551, with semi-double, scented flowers of variable colour from blush-pink, white, sometimes a mottled mixture of the two colours on the one flower or two different colours on different flowers on the same head. It has grey-green downy foliage and numerous thorns.

blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9458blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9643 Madame Hardy was bred in 1832 by Alexander Hardy, the chief horticulturalist at Luxembourg Gardens in Paris, and is possibly a Damask-Alba hybrid. It is a lovely rose and has tall upright canes, 2.1 metres in height, with fresh bright green foliage; buds with unusually leafy sepals and a faint blush and distinctive white cupped, fragrant flowers, which open out flat, then reflexed; and have a green eye in the centre. Vigorous and healthy, it only occasionally gets blackspot with stressful weather. I love Madame Hardy, having grown it in our old Armidale garden, and plan to order one for here next year, as it is such a famous and quintessential old rose.blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-183blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-182 Botzaris 1856 is another favourite with a divine perfume. It also has an affinity with the albas and has thorny wood, rich light green foliage and flattish, fully double creamy-white, often quartered, blooms according to Peter Beales, though the specimen I grew in my old garden was a very soft blush pink, which turned white with age, as can be seen in these photos:blogdivinedamasksreszd20img_9454blogdivinedamasksreszd50image-195I will be exploring the Elegant Albas – one of my favourite type of roses – next month, but in the meantime, we will be continuing our exploration of the South Australian old rose gardens, with a visit to the Barossa Old Rose Repository and the Twentieth Century and Heritage Rose Gardens of the Waite Institute next week!

Gorgeous Gallicas

This week, I am discussing one of the oldest cultivated Old European Roses, the Gallica Rose.

The original species and parent of all Gallica roses, Rosa gallica is a small, upright, deciduous bush (1.2 m high by 0.9 m wide), which suckers freely to form large shrubberies and is native to Southern and Central Europe, as far east as Turkey and the Caucasus mountains. The slender stems have fine prickles and glandular bristles and the pinnate leaves have 3 to 7 dull bluish-green leaflets. Borne in clusters of 1 to 4 blooms in Summer, the single, medium to large, deep pink, fragrant flowers have 5 petals and pronounced gold stamens and are followed by 10 to 13 mm, orange-brown, globose to ovoid hips in Autumn.  It was known to the Ancient Greeks and Romans and only flowers once.

Rosa gallica officinalis is the oldest cultivated Western rose and was grown in vast amounts by the Romans for rose oil, medicine and potpourri, as its petals retain their fragrance when dried. It is an erect, low, bushy shrub  (1.2 m high and wide; 1 to 1.5 m in Australia) with dull, dark grey-green foliage; highly fragrant, profuse, 8 cm wide, semi-double, deep pink blooms with gold stamens in Spring and Summer (the colour varying with the climate and season, being much paler in the heat); and small oval hips in Autumn. It declined in popularity after the fall of Rome, surviving in hedgerows, cemeteries, roadsides and abandoned gardens. It also persisted in 13th century monastery gardens, where its medicinal use earned it the title of the ‘Apothecary’s Rose’. Other names are the ‘Red Rose of Lancaster’, being a symbol of the House of Lancaster in the War of the Roses in the 13th century ; the ‘Red Rose of Miletus’ (Miletus was an Ancient Greek city), described by Pliny; and the ‘Rose of Provins’ or the ‘French Rose’, because many Gallicas were grown in Provins, just south-east of Paris. The word ‘Gallica’ is the female form of the Latin word ‘Gallicus’, meaning ‘Gallic’ or ‘French’, even though they are not French at all, but originated in the Caucasus Mountains! It was thought to have been brought back to Provins by Thibault Le Chansonnier on his return home from the Crusades. Thibault IV, King of Navarre, wrote a poem called ‘Le Roman de la Rose’ in 1260, in which he refers to this rose as having come from ‘the Land of the Saracens’.

In 1629, English botanist, John Parkinson, listed 12 types of Gallica roses. The Dutch then started raising seedlings to produce new varieties, after which the French started breeding them on a large scale. By the 1800s, there were over 2000 Gallica cultivars, accounting for more than half of the roses sold in Europe at that time. Empress Josephine grew 150 different Gallicas at her chateau at Malmaison. With their penchant for the unusual, Victorian gardeners loved collecting striped and spotted Gallicas in the early 19th century. With the introduction of the repeat blooming Hybrid Perpetuals, and then the Hybrid Teas, with their high centres and yellow and orange hues, Gallicas declined in popularity and there are only about 30 cultivars available today, though Peter Beales describes 52 varieties in his book ‘Classic Roses’. New Gallicas are still being produced in France and these particular cultivars tend to do better in dry and warm climates. There are no climbers, no repeat bloomers and no whites.

Description:

Dense, bushy, compact, stocky, upright small shrubs, generally 1.2m tall and 1.2 m wide, and suitable for small gardens and large containers.

Stems are slender and have fine prickles.

Foliage: Heavily veined, rough-textured, pointed, dull green oval leaves, which turn a deep red in Autumn.

Once-flowering: Blooms profusely for a period of  3 to 6 weeks in mid Summer. Open blooms, showing their stamens, are borne upright. Flowers are very variable in form, colour and fragrance.

Flower Form: Near-singles to fully-double, densely-packed rosettes 6.4 to 8.9 cm in diameter.

Flower Colour: From blush pink to a variety of pinks, lavenders and mauves and deep purple to crimson shades. Colours vary clear to cloudy, striped and even spotted. Most cultivars are the deeper, more intense colours : deep pinks; near-crimsons; and rich mixtures of purple, violet and mauve. This photo is Rosa Mundi.bloggallicasreszd50image-174Cultivation:

Gallicas are extremely hardy, tough, undemanding shrubs, which tolerate poor dry soils and gravel, drought and shade, though their colours will be less intense when grown in shade. Cold hardy, they survive Northern  European Winters without harm. They can be grown in Zone 4 to 8 and can survive temperatures down to minus 25 degrees Celsius. In fact, they actually require Winter chilling to provide a dormant period and perform poorly in the warmer areas of Southern Europe. They propagate easily from runners and suckers and will sucker freely if grown on their own roots to form thickets. Generally, disease and pest resistant (though their leaves can get mildew in cold, damp climates), they are very easy-care roses. Only prune out dead wood and the occasional old cane to increase air flow and encourage new basal shoots. Their size makes them ideal for small gardens. This photo is also Rosa Mundi. Note the variation in the amount of deep pink.bloggallicasreszd50image-240Cultivars:

Rosa Mundi :  Rosa gallica versicolour    Prior to 1581

A sport of Rosa gallica officinalis and one of the oldest and best known striped roses, this rose was named after Fair Rosamund, the mistress of King Henry II (1133 – 1189), as it was found growing near her grave. An upright bushy rose, 0.5 m to 1 m in height and width, with smooth stems, dull matte green foliage and highly fragrant, semi-double, 7 cm wide, striped flowers (though sometimes the odd branch reverts to its parent’s deep pink blooms). Flowers have crimson, pink and deep pink stripes on a blush white background and are followed by small oval red hips in late Summer and Autumn. A very hardy rose, tolerant of Summer heat and humidity (though is prone to mildew), it makes an excellent low hedge! Here is a final photo of Rosa Mundi !bloggallicasreszd50image-208Two more striped Gallicas are Camaieux (Camayeux), bred by Vibert in 1830, and Georges Vibert, bred by Robert in 1853 (according to Peter Beales, though David Austin attributes this rose to Bizard in 1828). Camaieux is a neat compact shrub (0.9 m high and wide) with twiggy growth and arching stems; grey-green leaves; and sweetly fragrant, loosely double, blush white flowers with even deep pink and magenta stripes, fading to mauve purple stripes on white with age. Dependable and disease free, it does not ball in wet weather. Georges Vibert has a small compact habit (1 m tall and wide); many thorns; and crimson buds, which open to small, flat, finely quilled and quartered, fragrant Summer blooms, which are blush white, striped with light crimson, though the colour may vary from carmine to purple depending on the climate. See the photo below:bloggallicasreszd50image-175

Cardinal de Richelieu Before 1847

One of the most commonly grown Gallicas, this tough medium sized shrub (1.5 m to 1.8 m high and 1.5 m wide) has a lovely branching habit, shapely orderly growth, few thorns, dark green leaves and ‘one of the darkest blooms of all roses’, according to David Austin.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-49-07

While its breeding has been ascribed to either Van Sian ( Holland) and Louis Parmentier (Belgium), it was introduced by Laffay in France in 1840 and its smooth, shiny, dark green foliage and growth habits are due to the fact that one quarter of its genes are from China roses. This Gallica has also been described by Graham Thomas as having ‘sumptuous blooms of dark grape’, due to its intense deep colouring. Dark crimson-purple buds open to a dustier, deep purple plum, small, cupped Gallica-like blooms, 6 cm wide, which reflex back to almost a ball and fade to a deep grey purple. It has 3 blooms per cluster and the fragrance has been described as a mild peppery scent. It benefits from the periodic removal of older growth. This rose was genetically altered in 2004 to produce the world’s first blue rose.bloggallicasreszd20%2014-10-27-12-49-12Other Gallicas with intense deep colouring are Tuscany (pre 1598) and its sport Tuscany Superb (Rivers, UK, 1837). Tuscany is one of the oldest surviving Gallicas, described as the Old Velvet Rose in ‘Gerard’s Herbal‘ in 1596. A vigorous, tidy, rounded shrub, 1.2 m tall and wide, it has stems, which are covered with fine prickles, and small dark green leaves. Like all Gallicas, it only flowers once in Spring with slightly fragrant, large, semi-double, dark crimson to deep purple flowers with flat velvety petals, arranged around prominent yellow stamens. A very tough survivor, it is both Winter-hardy and tolerant of Summer heat and humidity. It is not susceptible to black spot and only rarely gets mildew. It suckers readily on its own roots.bloggallicasreszd50image-198 Tuscany Superb, a sport of Tuscany, is a very fine Gallica, 1.5 m high and 0.9 m wide, with almost thornless stems; larger and more rounded, dark green foliage; and highly fragrant, semi-double, deep rich maroon velvety 6 cm wide blooms, ageing to a purple black, with gold stamens (often partially obscured by the larger number of petals), followed by bright orange red hips. The seed germinates easily, but needs stratification by chilling in the fridge for 12 weeks prior to sowing in Spring. It also spreads by suckering. Tuscany Superb requires a cold Winter for proper dormancy and Spring blooming. It is resistant to black spot, though can get slight mildew after blooming. See photos above and below.bloggallicasreszd50image-205I grew Rosa Mundi, Georges Vibert and Tuscany Superb in my old rose garden and would love to room to grow these once-flowering roses again! Two other Gallicas, which I would love to grow for their historical associations are Sissinghurst Castle and Empress Josephine. Sissinghurst Castle, also known as Rose des Maures, is another deep red Gallica, which was discovered by old rose lover, Vita Sackville-West, in the early 1900s, when clearing the gardens of Sissinghurst Castle. It bears rich plum blooms, edged and flecked with light magenta-crimson, with gold stamens in the centre. See its photo below. It was commercially produced from 1947 on and its blooms are very similar to Tuscany Superb, but the growth of the latter is is taller and more arching. It suckers freely to produce thickets of thick upright stems and is an incredibly tough survivor.  Empress Josephine, also known as Rosa francofurtana, but renamed after her death, is a large, sturdy, shapely shrub, with thornless stems; clean, trouble-free, coarsely-textured grey-green foliage; profuse, mildly fragrant, large, semi-double, rich pink, heavily textured blooms, veined with deeper shades, which last for 4 to 6 weeks; and a fine crop of large turbinate hips. Like all Gallicas, it is very tough and tolerant of poor soils.bloggallicasreszd20img_9712Please note, because I tend to only use my own photographs, I have only described roses that I have grown or photographed in gardens, which I have visited. Please consult ‘Classic Roses’ by Peter Beales or ‘The Rose’ by David Austin for a more extensive list. Next month, I am describing the Divine Damasks, another very ancient rose group.

Roses of the Adelaide Botanic Gardens

Since I examined Species Roses last week , I thought I would start the month with a feature post on the ACTO Heritage Rose Garden, which is based at Mt Lofty Botanic Garden in the Adelaide Hills and is devoted to Species Roses. I am also discussing the Adelaide Botanic Garden later on.

Mt Lofty Botanic Garden : ACTO Heritage Rose Gardenblogadelaidebgreszd80image-33625 minutes from Adelaide CBD; Free entrance; Map above from the official brochure.

Upper Entrance: Summit Rd, Crafers

Lower Entrance: Lampert Rd, Piccadilly

8.30 am to 4 pm Monday to Friday; 10 am to 5 pm Weekends and Public Holidays (6 pm Daylight Savings)

http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/botanicgardens/visit/mount-lofty-botanic-garden/gardens-gullies/atco-heritage-rose-garden

Mt Lofty Botanic Garden covers an area of 97 hectares in the Adelaide Hills and specializes in cool climate plants. It is one of three gardens managed by the Botanic Gardens of Adelaide and was opened to the public in 1977. The ACTO Heritage Rose Garden is set right up the top of the hill on the northern corner of the gardens above the nursery, and even though it is quite a long walk and not the easiest to find, it is well worth persevering! It is also a lovely walk up through the gardens!blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-09-33blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-34-57 It started as the National Species Rose Collection in 1977. The cooler climate of the Adelaide Hills is more favourable for the Species and Heritage Roses, while Hybrid Teas predominate in the much warmer Adelaide Botanic Garden in the city. During the late 1980s, the collection morphed into the ACTO Heritage Rose Garden and is dedicated to Clive Armour, the former Chairman of the Board of the Adelaide Botanic Garden and CEO of ACTO Power. The collection continues to expand with new acquisitions, grown by seed from known wild origin. Here are two maps from the official brochure:blogadelaidebgreszd30image-335blogadelaidebgreszd30%2014-10-27-11-59-12This garden is dedicated to Species Roses and the History and Development of the Rose. They are the forerunners of all modern roses and have huge variety in their shape, origin and scent. Usually they are all single (double or multiple petalled forms are usually hybrids) with 5 petals (though R. sericea pteracantha usually has only 4 petals). They provide all-year round interest and display from their Spring flowers to Autumn foliage and ripening hips in a wide variety of colour, shape and size. Roses are grouped in sections according to their characteristics (flowers; foliage; prickles; hips; and chromosome number). They are displayed in a linear taxonomic arrangement, with each group labelled with information, specific to that group, as well as each rose species being individually labelled. Rose-shaped information boards have titles from : The Story of the Rose and Old European Roses to Botanic Buccaneers; Out of China and The Power to Perpetually Flower; Rugged Roses (Rugosas and American roses) and finally Hip Hip Hooray, describing some of the roses renowned for their beautiful hips.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-48-30blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-48-46Attached to the online site is an excellent audio tour about the cultural and botanical history of the rose by Alexandra de Blas, who interviews Walter Duncan, a prominent rose breeder and rose grower of international renown (we visited his Heritage Garden in Clare in Peak Old Rose blooming season in late October 2014!) and Dr Brian Morley, a former Director of the Adelaide Botanic Gardens. It is well worth listening to it, both before and after visiting Mt Lofty Botanic Garden. Ideally, you would listen it as you walk round each bed! Unfortunately, I discovered the audio tour after my visit, so I cannot verify the mobile reception coverage in the garden! All in all, it is an excellent précis of the History of the Rose, even if you never get to visit this wonderful garden!! See: www.environment.sa.gov.au/files/sharedassets/botanic_gardens/audio/atco.zip.

I will now show you some photos of the different rose beds in the order discussed on the audio tour.

  1. Old European Species: In the early days of settlement in Australia, roses were transported by ship in Wardian cases to Hobart and Sydney, then overland to Adelaide. Gallica roses grew well in the early colonial gardens. An example from this bed is Cardinal de Richelieu, a deep purple Gallica.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-49-07bloggallicasreszd20%2014-10-27-12-49-12 Albas and Damasks are both complex hybrids. Trigintipetala or Kazanlik is grown in vast paddocks in Bulgaria, its petals distilled to produce attar of roses, used in the perfumery industry.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-50-29blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-49-46 Maxima is a very old, very tall Alba from the 15th century.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-06-33blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-07-44
  2. Wild Roses : Hebe’s Lip (1st photo) is a cross between a Damask and R. eglanteria, while Lord Penzance, a cross between R. eglanteria and ‘Harison’s Yellow’ (3rd photo below), is one of the Penzance Briars (2nd photo). Also see the photo of the shrub at  end of this section on Mt. Lofty Botanic Garden.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-09-12blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-13-09-47blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-12-52-41 Scotch Briars or Burnet Roses, R. pimpinellifolia or R. spinosissima, are also tough Species Roses, which grow in the wild in cold mountainous regions from the Alps to the Rockies and even the Arctic Circle.
  3. Chinese Species : The introduction of the continuous-flowering China roses to Europe by businessmen, returning from China in the days when China was opening up to the West, had an enormous impact on rose breeding. The four Stud Chinas : Old Blush (Parson’s Pink China) 1789; Slater’s Crimson China 1792; Hume’s Blush Tea-Scented China 1810; and Parks Yellow Tea-Scented China 1824, arrived in England in the late 18th century. Their petals had a translucent glow and a delicate scent, reminiscent of the tea chests, in which they arrived on the ships of the East India Company. Old Blush is an excellent picking rose and makes a good hedge.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-51-05blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-51-10 Mutabilis is one of my favourite China roses, its multi-coloured single flowers, reminding me of butterflies!blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-51-20Hermosa is a classic China hybrid rose.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-53-24 Two yellow species from China are Father Hugo’s Rose, R. hugonis (1st photo) and Canary Bird, a hybrid of R. xanthina (2nd and 3rd photos).blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-55-53blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-12-56-44bloghxroses20reszd2014-10-27-12-56-56 R. sweginzowii is found in NW China.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-57-32The plant hunters, or Botanic Bucaneers as they are labelled, also brought in Chinese species.blogadelaidebgreszd50%2014-10-27-12-58-25 Robert Fortune is remembered in the name of R. fortuneana.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-58-47 It is closely related to the Banksia roses, R. banksiae, with which it is closely intertwined in the photos below.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-59-07blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-59-18 There is also a single form: R. banksiae lutescens.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-03-48 Ernest Wilson brought back R. wilmottiae, R. moyesii and R. roxburghii. Wilmot’s Rose, R. wilmottiae, comes from Western China.blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-12-52-17 Moyes Rose, Rosa moyesii, has arching canes, red flowers (though there is a pink variation) and bright sealing wax red, bottle-shaped hips.blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-12-57-55 The Chestnut Rose (or Burr Rose), R. roxburghii, from China and Japan has vicious prickles, evergreen foliage, repeat-blooming flowers and prickly yellow hips, reminiscent of a chestnut or small pineapple.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-00-20blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-13-04-46blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-04-20 R. sericea pteracantha uses its blood-red, translucent winged thorns to gain purchase and climb up other vegetation. It is 3 m tall with wrist-thick canes and four-petalled flowers, but it is really grown for its attractive young shoots, thorns and leaves.blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-19-13-06-24blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-19-13-06-30The Himalayan Musk Rose, R. brunonii, is a huge shrub, 4 to 5 m high, with a five-petalled delicate white flower, with a sweet delicate fragrance, and 1 cm long, bright red hips in late Summer through Autumn to Winter, providing bird food. It is partially evergreen in warm climates.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-54-01blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-54-29 R. webbiana (1st two photos) also comes from the Himalayas, while R. rubus hails from Central and Western China (3rd photo).blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-13-10-29blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-13-10-57blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-54-53 Rosa dupontii is another favourite tall species with single white flowers and gold stamens.blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-12-55-11Largest of all, Rosa gigantea, climbs up to 20 m high into trees in NE India, SW China and the foothills of the Himalayas.blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-12-59-58
  4. Rugosa Roses: Very tough roses from Japan with deciduous, rugose, deeply-veined foliage; attractive continuous scented single flowers; and plump red hips, which look terrific in dried flower arrangements in Autumn and Winter. Best grown en masse as a hedge or bank, they are also used in land reclamation projects in Europe. They grow well on sandy soils and have no diseases or pruning or spraying requirements. The photos below show in order: Scabrosa, Mme Georges Bruant, Frau Dagmar Hastrup and Pink Grootendorst, one of the Rugosa cultivars.blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-13-11-35blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-14-01blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-13-12-34blogspeciesrosesreszd20%2014-10-27-13-14-46
  5. Hybrid Musks: Two of my fravourites are Buff Beauty (1st 2 photos)and Penelope (photos 3 to 5.) blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-15-17blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-17-27blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-16-41blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-16-20blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-16-56 The ACTO Heritage Garden is certainly a wonderful collection of the original Species Roses and an excellent reference point if you are considering growing Species Roses in your garden. All of them are tough, drought-resistant and disease-free and require no pruning, but they do need space and a temperate climate. This shrub of Lord Penzance definitely needs room!blogadelaidebgreszd20%2014-10-27-13-11-59

Adelaide Botanic Garden

North Terrace, Adelaide, SA 5000

Open 7.15 am Monday to Friday; 9 am Weekends and Public Holidays. Closes between 5 pm (Winter) and 7 pm (High Summer). For times, consult the website. Free entrance.

http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/botanicgardens/visit/adelaide-botanic-garden

I love visiting the Adelaide Botanic Garden, whenever I visit Adelaide. It is such a well-planned city with all the major institutions: the Art Gallery of South Australia, the Stae Library of South Australia, the South Australian Museum, the University of Adelaide, the Royal Adelaide Hospital and the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, all side by side the length of North Terrace and backing onto the landscaped gardens and lawns edging the Torrens River (Karrawirra Parri). There are two sections of the Adelaide Botanic Garden of particular note for the rose lover: the International Rose Garden and the National Rose Trial Garden, both designated by the reference E23 on the map from the official brochure below:blogadelaidebgreszd25image-334International Rose Garden

Hackney Rd, Adelaide, SA

This 1.5 hectare garden holds 2500 roses, with special areas devoted to Australian-bred roses; Single roses; Heritage Roses; Pillar Roses; and Charity Roses (the proceeds of their sale going back into specified charities) like Olympic Gold and The Childrens’ Rose. It includes a sunken garden; a circular rose garden; several pergolas and a series of huge arches, covered in climbing roses. Here are some photos from our visits in 2008 and 2014.

blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7113blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7104blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7105blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7106blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9309blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7112blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9324blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7114blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9342There are Teas; Hybrid Teas; Cluster-Flowered Roses; Shrub Roses; and Miniature Roses, Standards, Weepers and Climbers. The climbers on the huge arches include: Mermaid, a hybrid of R. bracteata, bred in UK in 1917;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9325blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9326

Adelaide d’Orléans, a hybrid of R. sempervirens, bred in France in 1826;blogspeciesrosesreszd20img_9330 R. brunonii, a Species rose, discovered in the Himalayas in 1922;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9332 R. gigantea, another Species Rose from the Himalayas 1889;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9334 Lamarque, a Noisette rose bred in France in 1830; Note the variation in colour according to the different light.blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9338blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9339

and Climbing Lorraine Lea, a Climbing Tea, bred by Alister Clark in Australia in 1932.blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9341Here are photos of some of the Tea Roses: Devoniensis 1838 UK;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9302 Triomphe du Luxembourg 1840 France;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9306blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9308 Catherine Mermet 1869 France;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9299 Anna Olivier 1872 France;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9305 and Jean Ducher 1873 France.blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7108blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7107 Hybrid Teas include: Mrs. Oakley Fisher 1921 UK;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9310 and Sally Holmes, a Shrub Rose, bred in UK in 1976.blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9319blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9320 R. X dupontii is a Species Rose from before 1817.blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9312Hybrid Musks include: Kathleen 1922;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9321blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9318 Cornelia 1925;blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9313 and Felicia 1928, all bred in the United Kingdom.blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9315blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9316 For more information, see: http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/botanicgardens/visit/adelaide-botanic-garden/gardens/international-rose-garden

National Rose Trial Garden

http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/botanicgardens/visit/adelaide-botanic-garden/gardens/national-rose-trial-garden

Started in 1996 to determine which roses, imported from the Northern Hemisphere and not yet for sale, are best suited for the Australian climate. It is the first of its kind in Australia (and the 3rd of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere) and is a joint venture between the Botanic Gardens of South Australia, the National Rose Society of Australia Inc. and the rose industry. Roses are trialled over two growing seasons (2 years), receiving equal treatment. Depending on the rose type, 3, 4 0r 6 plants are trialled. They are identified only by a code number, all other details only known by the trial coordinator and the agent, who entered the rose in the trial. A panel of 10 experienced rosarians allocate points every month of the 2 years, according to health; vigour; hardiness; pest and disease tolerance; growth habit; impact of display; beauty of blooms; abundance of flowering; fragrance and novelty. The best roses receive an award and are then sold in nurseries to the general public. Some of the winners can be seen on the following website: http://www.nationalrosetrialgarden.net.au/.

While in the city, it is worth consulting the following website, which details other rose venues:  http://www.adelaidecitycouncil.com/assets/rose-garden-walking-trail.pdf.

I always love visiting the Heritage Rose Garden on the Northern bank of the Torrens River between Frome Rd and the University footbridge. blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7096blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7098blogadelaidebgreszd25img_7099Established between 1996 and 1999 by the Adelaide City Council and the South Australian chapter of Heritage Roses Australia Incorporated, its terraced rose beds showcase 1200 Heritage Roses, including Teas, Chinas and Polyanthas, while Climbing Teas and Noisettes festoon pillars and arches. It is a very picturesque spot! Here are some more photos including Mutabilis (photos 4 and 6) :blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9372blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9368blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9363blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9369blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9370blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9373blogadelaidebgreszd20img_9374Next week, I am describing the Gorgeous Gallicas!