Mme Berkeley

jacqueline9CAFebruary 9, 2012

I have a question about this rose - I was thinking of getting it, after reading the glowing description in "Tea Roses - Old Roses for Warm Climates", the book from Australia.

However, when I looked it up on HMF it said that it does not do well in warm climates (?). This is confusing - this is a tea rose, right? Does anyone know what the comment on HMF means, or where it came from? I realize that "warm climate" can mean lots of different things. Does this comment really mean "does not do well in really hot desert climates", or "does not do well in the very humid warm US South", or does it also mean "does not do well in zone 9 Mediterranean climates with cool wet (usually - not this year!) Winters and warm, dry summers", which is the climate where I live?

Any thoughts or clues appreciated - this is the first time I have seen this sort of comment about a tea rose. Thanks so much for your help -


Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jerijen(Zone 10)

I bet it means it's not great in desert-like conditions.

In the hot part of a dry summer, the blooms really shrink down in size. I've seen them the size of, say, a Mini-Flora.

It continues to bloom prolifically IF IT HAS WATER, but the blooms will darken in a less-than-pleasing manner. In a desert environment, or anything approaching it, I might want to provide it with afternoon shade.

In my normal conditions -- and I think probably in yours -- it's great. The loveliest blooms are those of Fall, but spring is good too. It does not normally ball for me in wet weather.

Here, where the big disease problems are rust and mildew, it is completely disease-free in all seasons.

Jeri -- Coastal Ventura County, SoCal

    Bookmark   February 9, 2012 at 3:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Mendocino_Rose(z8 N CA.)

In your garden I imagine it will do very well. It certainly does in mine. I've had less trouble with it than many teas. Maybe it doesn't do well in the dessert.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 7:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Mme. Berkeley' is the most disease resistant of all my pink Tea roses.
It blooms continually from march through december.

"Mme. Berkeley' is my absolute favorite Old Garden Tea,
and Tea is my favorite class of rose


    Bookmark   February 14, 2012 at 11:02PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think the comment came from an observation by Cass Bernstein/Berndoodle on the "member's comments" tab. I think it's also made on her rosefog site.

Anyway, I thought maybe that MB is a tea that might do well up here, because of the comments. I planted it last spring and so far, so good. It hasn't bloomed yet and is only a foot tall, but summer's coming!

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 12:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Here, the foliage was good and the blooms were beautiful in the cooler parts of the year. However, during hot weather (which is a long stretch of time out this way), the color of the blooms would turn a muddy, harsh red that, to my eye, was pretty unpleasant and she was in a prominent spot. Replaced by Le Pactole.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 10:09AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks so much for all of the helpful comments! Definitely getting this rose!


    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 1:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Having grown it for probably a decade or so, I liked everything about 'Mme. Berkeley' . . . floriferousness, healthy foliage, vigor, thick foliation, relatively compact habit (for a Tea), scent, color . . . except for the fact that, of the literally hundreds of blossoms it would bear, I don't believe I ever found one sole blossom which was perfect once past the bud stage. Every blossom reached a point in opening in which it was divided. I'm far from being a perfectionist as far as blossom form goes; but this sort of inevitable "fail" bothers me quite a lot (I don't like 'Maman Cochet' and its ilk for the same reason). Eventually my specimen contracted a dieback disease which swept away a lot of my collection, and so I no longer have it. But it was magnificent in its bloomy profusion!

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 1:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jerome(z9 CA)

I love this rose. It's one of my oldest Teas (I started planting them in earnest April of 2005, and Mme. Berkeley went in in November of that year. It's now a 5'10" x 11' shrub. Beautiful foliage, beautiful flowers. Love it.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 2:43PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

odinthor said: Every blossom reached a point in opening in which it was divided.

I'm sure I should know this but I don't. Will you tell me what it means when a bloom "divides?"

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 4:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Glad to help! Others might be able to explain it better; but: Normally a rose unfurls from a central point, the petals with whatever regularity the form entails arranging themselves in a more or less regular pattern (even, though more complexly, in the "muddled" form) radially from that one central point. When a blossom is "divided," more than one central point (usually two) develops in the bud, and the regularity of the flower is ultimately spoiled, largely because the more inward petals run afoul of each other. Often, especially in the first stages of opening, the flower is still beautiful--the many partisans of 'Mme. Berkeley' and 'Maman Cochet' prove that--but it bothers me. I think it was Foster-Melliar who once wrote that he didn't think he had ever seen a perfect blossom of 'Homere'; this is what he was referring to. Ah, yes--here's the quote: "I will not say 'Homere' never comes perfectly shaped, because I have heard of one or two though I have not seen them. Its bad manners in this respect are the more aggravating, because each bloom has the promise of a beautiful shape but marred by a malformation. As often happens, the strongest blooms are the most imperfect [...]."

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 5:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thanks for the explanation, Odinthor.

I looked at the pics of 'Mme. Berkeley' on hmf - are the pictures posted by Shinobu an example of what you mean? Do you think that the division is caused by your climate or the clone you had? I just wondered because it didn't seem as if all of the blooms posted display that particular trait. Mulino's rose doesn't seem to be divided.

I've seen that divided characteristic in 'Enchantress' also but didn't know what it was called. Thank you, I appreciate the information.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 7:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yes, the Shinobu pictures come close, though mine were usually "tighter" than that in the center. I think I see the same phenomenon oncoming in some of the other pictures (in other words, some pix were taken before the flower opened up enough to display the "divided" characteristic). The non-divided blossoms pictured were a delight to look at, and I like to linger on the thought of a bush full of those, as I recall counting in the hundreds open or opening flowers all at once on my specimen during the initial Spring burst. I recall that the blossoms' peduncles were usually an "S-shaped curve." Hard to say why mine consistently had divided flowers. As the weather the flowers would develop in would vary over the course of the year (coastal Southern California), I'd tend to lay the blame on the clone rather than the climate. I'm almost certain that mine came from the old Heritage Rose Garden. The variety gave me much joy! But the joy was always coupled with regret that the darned blossom was inevitably imperfect. While I have had many Teas which don't display a divided flower, I do recall that my first Tea, 'Rosette Delizy', also always was divided. In Foster-Melliar's book, we see an example of a divided blossom, except his example of "dividedness" shows it at a more primary stage in the blossom's development, affecting the whole bud rather than just the inner petals. "Quartering" seems to be a closely-related phenomenon, except that the flower manages to open rather better...and I like quartering! It's maybe worth noting that my R. hemisphaerica 'Multiplex', a rose which has long had the reputation of what amounts to pathologically spoiling its flowers by dividing, almost always gives me beautifully perfect or near-perfect flowers . . . and it's only perhaps fifteen feet from the site where 'Mme. Berkeley' was!

    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 7:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jerijen(Zone 10)

Oh, Brent are you talking about a "bull nose" form?

If that's it, it don't bother me.


    Bookmark   February 15, 2012 at 8:37PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hmmm. Sort of a split bull nose, perhaps. Maybe like if the bull stuck his nose into an airplane propeller. Ouch!

(I'd like to add that no animals were harmed in the composition of this message.)

    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 12:41AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think you've offended Ferdinand. Perhaps you could re-phrase? I don't think he believes you.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 1:24AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jerijen(Zone 10)

Yes. I see what you're saying -- and with all apologies to Ferdinand (I really DO loathe the "Bull Nose" description) I just don't mind it. If I thought about it at all, it just reminds me of strawberry juice being stirred into thick custard.

Here are mid-November blooms, still profuse, tho admittedly rather battered by wind and rain:


    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 1:05PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jerome(z9 CA)

Gorgeous photo!

    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 2:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jerijen(Zone 10)

An easy rose to photograph. :-)


    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 3:50PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
seil zone 6b MI

They do not look battered to me, Jeri, they're beautiful! After looking at the pictures on HMF that's exactly the form I like in Teas, that sort of crushed, muddled, rumpled look. It's a lot less formal than the modern HTs and more old fashioned and romantic I think.

I thought "bull nose" was when they didn't completely open outward forming a very rounded bloom shape with an inward curving center instead of pointed. I don't mean like when a rose balls up and doesn't open at all though. Just like sort of that "blooming onion" shape.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 4:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Really beautiful picture, Jeri. And I think Ferdinand was just kidding, too.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 4:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ha! Tea roses are different, aren't they? Last fall I had a huge Maman Cochet bloom with 5 splits. What would that be - quintupled instead of quartered? Personally, Tea roses can do no wrong in my book. Sometimes they're beautifully odd, but most times they're just beautiful.


Here is a link that might be useful: If only sweat were irrigation...

    Bookmark   February 16, 2012 at 11:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

This rose does grow very well in the hot and humid south. But the blooms I get from it are nothing compared to the picture Jeri posted. I think the humidity puts freckles and discoloration on the bloom. It's a shame, because the foliage and form on this rose bush is one of the best in my garden. But the blooms are not attractive and have very little fragrance, so this is one of the few tea roses that I don't really care for.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2012 at 3:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
jerijen(Zone 10)

Yes. I can understand your problem with that.
In very hot, dry weather, the blooms DO discolor some. But our climate is temperate and humid most of the time (Jackie, too, has such conditions) so it is an EXCELLENT rose here.

By Contrast, Duchesse de Brabant is never without mildew here, and her blooms don't even open well. I would say the same for Mrs. Dudley Cross.

It's all about Location, Location, Location. :-)


    Bookmark   February 24, 2012 at 4:31PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

On Jan. 27 I received a 1 gallon Mme. Berkeley from Chamblees Nursery
On Feb. 2 I transplanted it to a 5 gallon pot

Only 3 weeks later I was shocked to see this last Tues. it has 5 tiny buds on it. I ordered over 20 roses in Jan. and this is the ONLY ONE that now has buds!

Thanks for the advice from the board!


    Bookmark   February 24, 2012 at 10:20PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
David Austin Backlash... Well post your FAV Austin Pic here.
There seems to be some recent backlash on austin roses,...
Has anyone grown Emmanuella de Mouchy?
Hello, fellow OGR lovers! Has anyone out there grown...
Lizzy in the garden
Off topic - sorry, but I know you all like animals....
Water Usage (Again) . . .
Well! I see that, at long last, the Los Angeles Times...
Opinion on planting group of 3 different Austins in triangle
I'd like to plant something interesting as a focal...
view1ny NY 6-7
Sponsored Products
Berkeley Dark Chestnut 80-inch Double Vanity
Sea Ranch Sconce by Coe Studios
$530.00 | Lumens
Berkeley Frameless 28" High Square Wall Mirror
Lamps Plus
Wyndham Collection Bathroom Berkeley 48 in. Vanity in Dark Chestnut with Marble
Home Depot
Sterling Industries DM1995 Berkeley Mirror In Fawnfield Distressed Bronze
Beyond Stores
Capital Lighting Berkeley Traditional Chandelier
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™