Admiring the Old Garden Rose

´╗┐Admiring the Old Garden Rose

To recreate the gardens of your ancestors, include the old garden roses. These date back for centuries, are hardier, and include a large variety. They fare well in poor conditions, are the easiest type of rose to care for, do best in rich soil that drains well, and continue to bloom for years.

Some types of the old garden rose are Mary Queen of Scots, Sweetheart Rose, American Beauty, Awakening, and Belle Amore.
The Butterfly Rose is an ancient hybrid from China, introduced in 1932. The blooms change colors from soft orange to pink to carmine, which makes it a delight to observe.

Old garden roses with the traditional appearance include:

The Duchesse de Brabant (a Gulf Coast rose with a light scent),
Belinda’s Dream (long stems, nice fragrance),
Zepherine Drouhin (unique fragrance),
Red Radiance (strong fragrance).

What classifies a rose as an old garden rose? According to the American Rose Society, these are plants introduced before 1867. They prefer light fertilization, a light feeding schedule, and patience. They bloom only when they are ready to bloom.

Judging seminars are held because it is a challenge to judge the old garden rose; therefore, the judging for it is not set in stone. Fewer judges are familiar with it than with the newer modern roses.
If your goal is to show your old garden roses for prizes, you’ll have to pay a bit more attention to them and prepare them properly for the shows. Things to look for include strong, vibrant blooms, leaves, and stems. They should have good color. Remove damaged petals (trim if necessary). The foliage should be clean. The less side growths you have on your canes, the better. A stem-on-stem condition is considered impairment. This is when new growth starts where old growth had stopped.

A national show was held in Dallas, Texas, in October of 2006. There are district shows and local shows around the country as well. If you are interested in competing in the rose shows, you might consider joining the American Rose Society. Through such a group, you can obtain a wealth of information and contacts.

Plenty of garden groups and clubs exist for rose enthusiasts. A short list of some of these clubs are as follows:
American Horticultural Society, Arlington Rose Foundation, Phoenix Rose Society, Potomac Rose Society, Arizona West Valley Rose Society, and Humboldt Rose Society.

If you would enjoy traveling around the United States in search of gardens to view the various old garden roses, among other types, you could try the following places:

The Pageant of Roses Garden, Whittier, CA, Washington Park International Rose Test Garden, Portland, OR, Inez Parker Memorial Rose Garden, San Diego, CA, The Gardens of the American Rose Society, Shreveport, LA, Tyler Municipal Rose Garden Center, Tyler, TX, and the Zilker Botanical Garden, Austin, TX.

If traveling the United States is not an option, try the local yellow pages in your area or call or visit the Chamber of Commerce in your town to get information on local gardens, clubs, and events that feature old garden roses.

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