Huntington member article on the decline of the rose hobby

aimeekitty(9-10, SW 18)April 11, 2013

There's an interesting article in the Huntington member newsletter with opinions by the new rose garden curator, Carruth.

He talks about how there are less people buying rose than there were 10 years ago and even 5 years ago, and talks about how much less varieties are being bought as well (the proliferation of Knock Out's )

"The number of field-grown roses in the US fell from 50 mill in 1990 to as low as 18 mill in 2011"

Also talked about how the housing market and the economy has perhaps effected how many people had new gardens to put roses in as well.

"my rose society has about 100 members now, in the 1950s we had 2,000"

They also talk about how many rose growers have gone bankrupt recently.

Carruth thinks that rose from the 40s-70s are particularly in danger of being lost. Apparently when he inventoried Huntington's collection he identified 121 roses he thought were "collectible" and is trying to get them into propagation. THey want to make sure the plants at Huntington don't fail and disappear and also eventually want to make them available for sale at Huntington plant sales.

They also plant to do more rose talks at Huntington to hopefully educate people and gain more rose growers.

it's roughly a 7 page article, which is unusual for the newsletter.

pardon my bad typing, I have a grabby handeded 6month old in my lap. :)

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Between spreading RRD and stifling the sales of any other roses, I regard Knockouts as the devil in the garden.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 9:22PM
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Aimeekitty - so glad to hear that the Huntington will be getting pro-active about saving mid 20th century roses. I think that was one of Vintage Gardens' goals too. Anything that promotes saving roses is good, in my opinion. Those roses are not my choice, but I'm sure there are good ones in the group which deserve to be saved, and of course encouraging more people to grow roses is always good. Then we can seduce them into also growing real oldies.....


    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 9:31PM
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catsrose(VA 6)

Thank you so much for this post! I am happy that there are those who track this information.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 11:21PM
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My last Vintage order was mostly 20th century hybrid teas. I know there are many over-hyped HTs that perform poorly in some zones, but there are so many fine ones doomed to extinction *sigh*

    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 11:50PM
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seil zone 6b MI

This is good news to me. I love a lot of those old HTs because those are the roses my Grandmother and Mom grew. I have a lot of memories of them. I have picked up a number myself but good to know others will too. I know a lot of people think of them as disease riddled Divas but a lot of them are classic beauties too.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 12:37AM
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I don't regard any rose as hailing from the devil's workshop, but it's not good for variety in the garden when one small group of roses dominates the garden scene. And for me, variety contributes to complexity which is an important component of beauty. It's important to preserve good varieties of all types and from all periods.
Most important of all, people need to be persuaded back into gardening. I don't know how to talk non-gardeners into getting dirt on their hands, but that seems to be a prime requisite for a renaissance of gardening in general and rose cultivation in particular.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 4:27AM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Too many people spending a lot of time on the internet instead of out in the garden where they belong.

I read that article too, it was pretty interesting. Funny that Tom Carruth's gateway rose (the one that got him hooked) was 'Sterling Silver'.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 5:13AM
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As I said above, mid 20th century hybrid teas are not my choice, but I admit I have a few (I am a collector, and cannot let any rose get away once it is in the garden). Here is a picture of what we think is Duet (Swim, 1960), and Sutter's Gold (1950), taken yesterday - buds just opening. These were planted by my DH's grandfather when they were new, and we rescued them from dark shade under large bushes where they had survived for decades somehow. They were just sticks that didn't bloom - we put them in huge pots on the edge of the patio, and it was fun seeing what they did.


    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 9:13AM
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Years ago, I realized that I was in a good climate for HTs and decided to embrace them at the time when many people were pulling theirs out. It's not more work for me to grow them and I actually get more flowers from my HTs & Fls than my DAs give me over the months of a growing season. Some of the oldies like Perle d' Or have them all beat of course.

I would like to see the Huntington offer some older HTs and Fls at the yearly sale. The last time I went they had what looked like newer variety grafted plants from any local nursery like Armstrong. That's not why I go to the Huntington's sale. I go to get something special. It's coming up later in the month a few weekends from now.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 10:43AM
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ingrid_vc so. CA zone 9

I've developed a weakness for the early hybrid teas such as Lady Alice Stanley, Leonie's Appoline, Souvenir de President Carnot and, of course, La France. All of them are from Vintage, and I wish now I had bought more of them when they were still available. They do need a little more care to grow from bands but it's been a fun challenge and I look forward to seeing them at their best in a few years.


    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 11:04AM
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That sounds like a very interesting article. Do you know if there is any place it can be seen on line?

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 11:31AM
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I think there are a lot of contributing factors:
More people are living in apartments/condos/townhouses and don't have the property or permission to plant what they want, where they want.

Those that are buying homes seem to be going for houses in developments where the available yard space is small, limiting the quantity and size of plantable roses, and the houses so close together, many would have a hard time meeting the sun requirements of many roses. Not to mention that many of them are pre-landscaped and people don't what to bother with removing and replacing. (Not to mention digging up and loosening mechanically compacted fill repute.)

More people are concerned with the impact they have on the environment and are less likely to jump into roses (ouch!) that require scheduled sprayings of pesticides and fungicides.

Many people see HTs, find out the care requirements and say, "No time!" without bothering to find out about all the other choices that are available.

People that grow HTs for exhibition generally go with whatever's been winning. If a rose dropped from the prize lists because something bigger/brighter/shinier became available, up came the older rose and out it went. *cries a little thinking of that*

As more and more people seem to be getting back into gardening, I think there will be a resurgence in roses. Like any other hobby, interest ebbs and flows.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 11:55AM
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I agree with Praties - people are less interested in spraying poisons all over, and spending the time the "experts" tell you you must spend on HTs.

That said, in Spring all roses an be magical. I posted a pic of two mid 20th century HTs (Duet and Sutter's Gold) we rescued in our garden above, buds just starting to open. This morning when I walked out (2 days later) here's what the exact same bushes were doing - the light pink one on the left is La France.


    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 12:34PM
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I 've been growing roses since the mid 70's. Have seen a lot of people come and go over the years. Also a lot of rose's. The past couple of years I have been hunting down and putting back in my garden what I grew way back when. Mostly HT's and a few Florabunda's. They look great with my newer HT's, Austin's and OGR's. Everyone who see's them loves them. It spark's an interest in them. They want to know how they can "do that".

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 1:47PM
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Then there are people who think "yardwork" is a lowly activity. I have heard people say they would never think of doing their own yard, cleaning their house or washing their own car. Those are jobs that are done by people low on the status level and are low pay, low skill jobs. I rarely ever see a truly skilled gardener working outside of an arboretum or big private garden except for an arborist or a landscaper directing other people. I know people who won't wash their own clothes and have everything sent out. So I can understand why you see fewer people working in their gardens, given that lawn services are mostly inexpensive and competitive, trying to offer garden maintenance for the lowest price.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 7:31PM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

That sounds like a very interesting article. Do you know if there is any place it can be seen on line?

I looked. No, doesn't appear to be. Perhaps in a few months.

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 7:39PM
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buford(7 NE GA)

There are many health benefits of gardening. You are out in the yard getting sun, which is vitamin D. Most people are deficient in vitamin D and getting it naturally is better than taking supplements.

Exposing yourself to the dirt with it's many microbes is good for your immune system. Too many kids grow up in virtually sterile conditions and this can cause their immune systems to react to benign things (like peanuts and cat dander) because they don't have anything else to do.

Gardening is great exercise. It's can be aerobic (digging holes, mowing, hoeing) or weight bearing (dragging 20 lb bags of mulch or top soil around).

Gardening is calming. Like meditation. Weeding a bed can be very therapeutic. If you have something or someone bothering you, pretend they are the weeds and you can get great satisfaction from 'killing' them.

I'd rather be outside getting all these benefits instead of taking supplements and going to the gym. The best benefit is a beautiful yard that you can sit and relax in and enjoy the fruits of your labor.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 7:52AM
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The original article that was pulled from was reprinted on the Great Rosarians blog at the link below. Kim

Here is a link that might be useful: The Rise and Fall of Our National Floral Emblem

    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 12:32PM
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Oh my ---this makes me so sad---I grew up with New Dawn---we are the same age---I often wonder how my parents were able to aford a rose back in 1930--but she was on the side of our little home all through the depression---when I had my own home in the 50's I had many beautiful HT roses--I still remember them fondly --Pres Herbert Hoover was a beauty and a few years ago I was able to find one----
My gardening is very limited these days or I would surely be buying more roses---I agree with Buford----gardening is the best as long as your body hold up.
Pres Herbert Hoover


    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 1:34PM
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buford(7 NE GA)

roseseek, thanks for posting the link. There is a lot in there that I agree with. There are two types of rose growers, the ones who exhibit and everyone else. I just went to my first show and loved it, but I grow roses because I love them. And I love being out in the yard and seeing my roses in my yard. I think putting more emphasis on how roses look in a yard, rather than in a vase at a show would help people want to grow them more.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 3:43PM
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seil zone 6b MI

All this stuff about HTs REQUIRING special care is hogwash! Yes, if you want to win Queen of Show you're probably going to have to fuss and spray and primp. If you just want some lovely blooms for your garden they do NOT require any more or less care than any other rose! They like sun, water, some fertilizer once in a while and a pruning in the spring. Isn't that all the same stuff you do for all your roses? Even Knock Outs?

I grow a lot of HTs and I do exhibit (and have won Queens) and I do not give my HTs any different care than I do my OGRs, shrubs, polys, floris or my lone Knock Out. I generally avoid spraying at all costs but admit to having done so in dire circumstances. However, when I do so it's on everything, not just the HTs, because what ever I'm spraying for is everywhere and not just on the HTs. When I water, I water it all. When I fertilize, yep, everything. Pruning, same thing. The HTs are just part of the rose garden and get all the same care. I can not think of one thing extra or different that I've ever done or had to do for my HTs that I didn't do for all the rest.

If we ourselves continue to promote the myth that these roses are Divas how can we expect newbies to think of them any differently. And that's a shame. Because unless you want a rose world consisting of nothing but Knock Outs, people are going to have to buy a lot of HTs because, for the most part, other than the KOs those are the only other roses that are readily available out there at the local stores. And if they don't buy them stores will stop carrying them and growers will stop producing them and they'll all disappear. So we need to stop scaring them off with horror stories that just aren't true.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 7:36PM
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It all depends on where you are and how intense the disease pressure is. Here on the west coast, if you don't spray HTs every 10 days, 90% of them spend much of the season leafless. Mind you, the same holds true for 90% of the modern miniatures, and many others. Gallicas, Damasks, and Albas, on the other hand, are bulletproof here.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 7:58PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

Well, there you are.

It's just like Real Estate, really ... "Location, Location, Location." I think the problems crop up when we think that any sort of rose is great EVERYWHERE.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 8:29PM
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seil zone 6b MI

Agreed, Paul, the right rose for the right place but the fewer choices that are available the less chance of finding one that works well.

After being on forums for years now I can't think of any place, probably world wide, that isn't a disease pressure spot of one kind or another. Mine is black spot, yours is rust or mildew, but every place is something. And everyone thinks their's is the worst place. That's normal. What we can't do is let varieties continue to disappear because they didn't work in one place. Sterling Silver is either a dog for one or a masterpiece for another. I can probably think of at least a dozen roses off the top of my head that are either beloved or despised by people on this forum all the time. It all depends on what works for you. But if all you can get is a handful of varieties that have been deemed "suitable for ALL places" by who knows who, what will we do then? And BTW, KOs spot like mad here!

    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 8:43PM
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buford(7 NE GA)

I had a neighbor approach me when I was out in the yard the other day. They moved into a house around the block and they did a lot of improvements on the outside, but their garden is non-existent. They have what appear to be 6 HTs in an island that I pass each time I go to my house. They are very scraggly looking. I did notice that they cut them way down this spring and they are leafing out but are still very small.

Anyway, the guy asked me about my roses and explained where he lived. He wanted to know why his roses didn't look like mine, and he particularly pointed to Mrs BR Cant and some other large teas (he thought they were knockouts, LOL). I told him they weren't the same kind of roses and tried to explain the differences. He wanted to know what Home Depot I got these roses in. I told him that these types of roses are usually only available through mail order (mine came from Vintage and Roses Unlimited). So I think he's going to try Roses Unlimited. I told him that if he got them I would help him with the planting (well, I'll supervise, he's a big young guy, he can do the digging).

I think people just need to be educated and our yards with non big box roses can serve as educational tools. People don't know what to do or what plants to buy. And it doesn't help that most garden centers only sell certain types. It's almost set up for disappointment and the rose culture suffers because of this.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 8:56AM
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lkaye(z5 WV)

I could swear it was less than 5 years ago that they (who I don't know, something on the news) were saying gardening was still the number one hobby.....

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 10:03AM
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peachymomo(Ca 8)

I just had to add to Buford's list of gardening's health benefits, according to my psychology teacher gardening is the healthiest thing you can do for your brain. Getting out in the sun, doing some light exercise, connecting with the earth, nurturing and watching plants grow is the best way to fight depression, anxiety, etc.

Working in the garden is my therapy time. Some of my friends/family think I'm crazy for expending so much energy moving rocks or digging out pathways, but what they don't realize is that it's keeping me sane. Whenever life or the news get me down (or riled up) I just work out that negative energy in the garden, and when I'm done I've made a little part of the world more beautiful and I feel much better.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 11:28AM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

I really think the economic crash was a huge, huge factor.

Let's face it, if you think you're about to be a bag lady, you probably are not buying roses.

But it is also true that a huge % of people these days don't spend time gardening. There are "Yard Services" for that.


    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 2:37PM
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Mendocino_Rose(z8 N CA.)

I read somewhere that the number one hobby now is gambling. I'm hoping that the pendulam will swing back for gardens. The joy of growing things is so very important. I can see all the reasons why things are going the way they are but I'm still hoping.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 7:13PM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

Buford -- You GO!

You do Missionary Work where you can. Our neighbor's Daughter was here this weekend. she surprised the Hell out of me by saying she's growing roses -- she's starting cuttings. She's "Got the bug.".

We never know when -- or WHERE -- the need to grow things will spring up again.


    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 11:36PM
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There's a huge revival in gardening...but I think that the majority of the growth is in edible, native, and water-wise gardens...not basing this on anything other than anecdotal evidence through my peer group.

Give these new gardeners a few years...once they've figured out tomatoes they're bound to decide to see if it's as "hard" (or water-wasteful or necessarily-chemical-laden) as they think to grow roses too.


    Bookmark   April 15, 2013 at 10:10AM
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eclecticcottage(6b wny)

I "inherited" some roses which I think are Ispahan Damask with our house (they are a wild and crazy thorny thicket below some Rose Of Sharon that are equally wild and crazy-there wasn't much tending to gardens down around ehre in YEARS). I bought Queen O The Lakes, Peace and species Rugosa. I don't have a "rose garden", I have roses in my garden. I sought out Rugosa because of it's carefree easy care fast growing nature. I've always loved Peace, and Queen o the Lakes had to come home since I live in a cottage on the lake. I don't know many people that grow roses, whether in a specific rose garden or like I do, mixed in with my other plants. I think many people feel like gardening takes too much time (watching TV doesn't however)-just like so many people won't cook from scratch anymore. I also agree that many peole think roses are high maintainace and shy away from all but the ones like KO's, Oso Easys, etc because they tout their low care and long bloom seasons. That might be another reason older roses aren't as popular-people want everything 24/7 and a once bloomer isn't going to cut it. I probably wouldn't want a garden full of once bloomers either, but mixing them in with other longer blooming perennials and annuals helps establish them as "foundation" plants that anchor the rest of the bed.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 10:57AM
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sandandsun(9a FL)

It's interesting that Carruth wrote it in 2010.

The thesis statement is a great one:
"So - where does this misconception come from and why is it perpetuated? From the answers of well-intentioned Rosarians, rose societies, garden columnists and companies that offer rose-care related products."

It's particularly prickly when the culprits are the so called "pros," isn't it?

But I agree entirely.

I've thought for decades that the ARS is stuck in the Victorian Era. (Charles Dickens made it clear that getting out of that era would be a very good thing). Also, the engine of the US economy has lived neither Upstairs nor Downstairs for many decades.

So, I agree it is a combination of factors. There's the pretentiousness of the ARS with its focus on cutting, arranging, etc., and the requisite cultural information tailored for those ends; the Great Recession; sustainability; and hybridizers.

About those last two: sustainability and the hybridizers. There are so many beautiful - extremely beautiful, plants and flowers for every climate that don't require us to poison our environment to enjoy them. When the curator of the NYBG roses was quoted as saying something to the effect that many introduced roses were never meant/expected to succeed, I realized that he was correct in that if a plant were expected to be sprayed, then it couldn't be expected to survive without sprays.

Hybridizers made that choice - a mistake, which has been proven by the revolutionary named Radler with his Knock-Out punch.

BTW, zeffyrose_pa6b7, I LOVE your garden sign!

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 7:03PM
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"Hybridizers made that choice - a mistake, which has been proven by th e revolutionary named Radler with his Knock-Out punch."

Not quite... The "hybridizers" don't bear the guilt of that "choice". Rose growing has 'required' spraying in many climates for many decades. It has been the accepted, established norm. Very few things change without an cause. Independent breeders, such as Mr. Radler, have their own goals to achieve. A few have sought greater disease resistance, but none to the extent of Mr. Radler. He hit upon the scene at the time he was supposed to. Had it not become increasingly unpopular and, in increasing places, illegal to spray, there would not have been as great a push for no-spray to reduced-spray roses. Had chemicals not become as expensive as they have; had incomes not been as extremely impacted as they have; had the costs of simply "living" not risen as greatly as they have; had free time not become as endangered; had there not been as many popular new activities to compete with gardening; and had we not become so painfully aware of how toxic so many of the chemicals have been and still are, very likely the established norm, the status quo, may not have changed.

A breeder working for a corporation has had little wiggle room to explore his or her own goals. Very often, he or she has been told what class and color of rose fits the company's marketing strategy. It's up to them to have those types of plants in the pipeline, ready to be introduced. No matter how important resistance to a disease was to the corporate breeder, the costs of finding that resistance has frequently been denied them by the companies signing their pay checks. Searching for new gene sources, running long-term disease tests to determine what should be used as the next breeding step, all take time, real estate, man hours and money. For those running a cost/profit center of a corporation, those resources have too frequently been unavailable in the amounts really needed to make a real change.

Those who were blessed to have cottage industry type nurseries in which to explore and create have done some very interesting, imaginative work with a few real advancements. The very few, such as Ralph Moore, who had the extreme good fortune to own the business, had the freedom to march to their own drums, explore potential avenues for some real advancement and create some masterpieces.

But, the Zarys, Carruths, Christensens, Warners of the world, have been hamstrung by a business model which demanded adhering to the status quo. Create products which fit the public taste and grow with at least the minimum chemical requirements the accepted norm used. The funds required to strike out and create something entirely new were not theirs for the taking. They had to pay for themselves using the tools they had at their disposal. The real black spot advancement came from the hands of someone outside the corporate restraints. Even then, it's far from perfect. They still spot in many climates and they still mildew and rust. Unfortunately, "perfection" is simply not possible given the gene pool with which there is to work in the Genus Rosa.

The "blame" the breeders could be seen as possessing is, if they wished to earn their livings by breeding roses, most had to become cogs in the corporate machines, towing the corporate party line and being constrained by their employers' profit dictates and cost controls. But, it was by no means their "fault" that roses continued to require spraying. Each decade, the bar for health, vigor, bloom production, bloom quality has been raised. Walk through any garden containing beds of the roses popular by decade and you see it. There are vast improvements in the plant quality from roses of the 20s compared to the 30s and each successive decade thereafter. Plant the popular 1940s rose beside the popular 2013 rose and the former most often pales greatly in comparison. Those improvements have come from the hands of rose breeders and their advances.

Even though Mr. Radler's Knock Out series of roses are selling in greater quantities than the previous market darlings, from what you read here on these forums, they're often regarded as something awful that are 'good for us' and not what we WANT. I believe, were it not for the fact Knock Outs selling as well as they are for shopping centers and other commercial installations, and to the mow/blow/go "gardeners" because they represent an improved way for them to operate, their quantities would be substantially reduced from what they are. It is almost heresy for anyone here to actually admit they deliberately purchased and planted a Knock Out instead of an Austin or "leprous" older HT from decades past. WE know better. We have the advantage of 20-20 hind sight, yet people here still covet the beautiful, fragrant "mistakes"...Angel Farce, Double Distress, Sterling Silver and the rest. I would venture to suggest that had Knock Out arrived on the scene forty years ago, it would have failed as an uninspired, bland red floribunda and now be as impossible to find as the average roses of that vintage. Because they don't have the seduction the "mistakes" frequently have, and forty years ago, very few people cared a rose needed to be sprayed. It was simply "the norm". Kim

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 8:03PM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

my two cents

Was talking with one of my sons friends who is working for a relatives gardening business. He says he has never seen a home owner touch their yard once they have a service. If the services have to bid on lowest price, they have to either hire people with no clue or work faster. Neither works well with more than the basic HD garden shop landscaping.

(The friend is also a victim of the economy-mowing lawns with his teaching credential from a good school...)

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 9:15PM
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eclecticcottage(6b wny)

"Plant the popular 1940s rose beside the popular 2013 rose and the former most often pales greatly in comparison."

Hmm...I think my two favorites might be more mid 40's-50's, but I'll put Peace and Queen O The Lakes up to what I've seen lately at garden centers. I lost my original Peace to a move, but I NEVER sprayed it, trimmed it or fed it. And it was fine, blooming away. Queen O The Lakes is newer to me, but she's quite pretty...

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 9:46PM
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Sandandson----thank you---my daughter gave me the sign several years ago and it has held up well
I also love it.


    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 10:20PM
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sandandsun(9a FL)

"The engine of the US economy" is the middle class in plain language. They drove the market for the "market darlings" and watched them die year after year or worse yet look embarrassingly diseased.
One must know one's market.
It was poor judgment or delusional to think that members of rose societies were buying tens of millions of roses.
But that same market IS buying Knock-Outs. They say things like "I can grow Knock-Outs." They also say "Knock-Outs are beautiful."
I am very happy for them. And I'm very happy that fewer and fewer folks are poisoning our precious planet (and possibly our bees) for the sake of disease ridden roses. They weren't worth it then and they aren't worth it now. I suspect they will be less worth it in the future.
I say good riddance.
The real punch line from the article is that the ARS, which purports to be the biggest reason for roses being grown, is accused of sabotaging rose growing in more than one reference.
And the ARS IS quite complicit in the decline of hybrid teas, of roses in general, and of perpetuating the poisoning of the planet.

zeffyrose_pa6b7, you're welcome. I REALLY DO LOVE it.
If I find one, it will be in my garden too!

This post was edited by sandandsun on Tue, Apr 16, 13 at 22:57

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 10:49PM
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aimeekitty(9-10, SW 18)

La France Cl and Lady Alice Stanley are definitely winners. I love mine.

A lot of people, if they have a garden, they're going to go to the local big box store or their local nursery. Neither of which often carry many older roses… How are they supposed to know about other options?? Again, I really wish there were more ways to get more word out there. I wish there was a way that local nurseries, the good ones, could partner with specialty rose nurseries that sell mostly online. But as we've talked about repeatedly, everyone has different tastes, different requirements and different climate… it would be hard perhaps for nurseries to pick a few "winners". anyway, I can dream I guess.

I'm really not sure how else other than rose talks and example gardens on how to get the word out more about OTHER OPTIONS.

Also I wish more people would talk about how easy certain roses are in certain climates…

I'm not sure that there is ANYONE on my street who gardens their own yard…

I've had similar experiences as Anika in my peer group. People mostly interested in edible gardening, etc. I'm occasionally able to convert someone, but very rarely. I'm honestly surprised that more people on my street don't ask about at least one or two things, like Irises are super easy, you know?

I wish my grandmother who lived back south-east could see how big and lush my roses are now in the southwest. She would have loved them. Her camellias were huge and she had a well loved Cecile Brunner and Peace.

I also agree about the psychological benefits. I have two teething twin babies who drive me crazy sometimes, but if I go outside and water things a bit or weed or whatever, it doesn't have to be very long. I always feel better.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2013 at 11:52PM
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"the Zarys, Carruths, Christensens, Warners of the world, have been hamstrung by a business model which demanded adhering to the status quo. Create products which fit the public taste and grow with at least the minimum chemical requirements the accepted norm used."

Accurately stated by a man who knows what he is talking about.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 12:16AM
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It is "interesting" to read the original article and some of the posts here concerning the history of the rose through what I will call "southern California glasses". I have been exposed to similar thinking since I started serious rose hybridizing and rose society membership activities in the early 70s. However, that view of rose history was not consistent with my interpretation of the reading that I was able to obtain particularly from the Canadian and European rose literature. As examples, please note that no mention has been made of the hybridizing efforts of Grifith Buck (Iowa), Canadian rose hybridizers (government and individuals), Austin, and German and other continental European (mainly shrub type) hybridizers.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 1:30AM
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Henry wrote: "It is 'interesting' to read the original article and some of the posts here concerning the history of the rose through what I will call 'southern California glasses'." And, "As examples, please note that no mention has been made of the hybridizing efforts of Grifith Buck (Iowa), Canadian rose hybridizers (government and individuals), Austin, and German and other continent al European (mainly shrub type) hybridizers."

For all intents and purposes, Henry, the "American Rose Industry" has been, for many decades, Central and Southern Californian. Week's accomplished their breeding and production in Chino and Wasco California. J&P, for nearly three-quarters of a century, accomplished their R&D and breeding as well as production in Somis and Wasco California. Conard Pyle, Star and Star Meilland did their American work in Wasco California. The lion's share of all of the American production was accomplished in Wasco, with some in Texas and even less in Arizona.

Griffith Buck's work was never fully supported by Iowa State during his lifetime. Yes, they provided him employment and resources necessary to breed his roses, but they never advertised nor promoted them. That was all his effort, writing of them for the ARS, supplying articles about them for ARS publications. The majority of his creations were introduced by Dorothy Stemler and Pat Wiley through Roses of Yesterday and Today, hardly what most of us would call a "major player". For many years, if you sought a Buck rose, ROYAT was your only source. Very many of his roses were not readily commercially available until years after his death. Dr. Buck had his ideals and goals and he accomplished many of long as they are grown in the specific climate types he bred for. I've grown many of his roses (please feel free to check my old garden listing, "A Hidden Sanctuary" on HMF to see a list of what grew there) here in California and I experienced severe rust on many, with Wandrin' Wind being severely afflicted. Mildew was a common malady with many of his roses in my climate. Black spot was not a usual issue there, so I can't comment about how they would perform under that pressure, but with what we now know about the various strains of the disease group, it's safe to say his creations could well suffer as badly as many HTs do in areas supporting the strains he couldn't and didn't test and select for resistance to. His roses are not the type most of the "decline" has been blamed on anyway, and weren't commercially available in any significant quantities over the period being discussed (perhaps hundreds annually, versus hundreds of thousands to millions annually of HTs and floribundas).

Canadian and northern European breeders would necessarily have sought greater black spot resistance as part of their search for greater arctic hardiness. Their companies should have had those goals as part of their business and marketing strategies. However, virtually none of the Canadian efforts could be considered material suitable for this discussion. There were some Canadian offerings, but scant few in comparison to the American, hence Californian products.

At the 2010 GROTW event, the year Austin was awarded the Great Rosarians of the Year, Michael Marriott stated while accepting the award for Mr. Austin, the criteria for selecting seedling roses at Austin's nursery were, "the look; fragrance; beauty of flower;...of course health has to be 'acceptable', but it is not as high on the list as some other criteria". I had delivered my eulogy for Ralph Moore and stated his oft repeated admonition of "create a good plant first, it's easy to hang a pretty flower on it later." Mr. Marriott made his statement about health not being as high a priority at Austin's in response to my presentation.

Northern Europeans, particularly Kordes and Tantau, would necessarily have sought greater spot resistance in their quest to increase arctic hardiness. It is common sense that a healthier plant would stand a greater chance of being more cold hardy than a sickly one, all other things remaining equal. Ironic they are the ones first impacted by chemical sprays being outlawed for ornamentals. How much of their latest pushes for increased health were due to their seeing the "hand writing on the wall"? The "cause" requiring the change in status quo. But, even their offerings would have had less influence on the issues being discussed, simply because there were fewer of their roses involved compared to the American/Californian products. "Shrub-type" roses aren't the ones being blamed for the decline in the rose hobby. It is primarily the Hybrid Tea, with some floribundas. The same ones being written about and searched for in these forums. Kim

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 3:25AM
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Campanula UK Z8

A very interesting discussion has come out of this thread (to which I have little to contribute apart from a vaguely European sensibility regarding both breeding, growing and buying roses.
Firstly, the effects of economic downturn - surprisingly, this has impacted less than might have been expected.....because we, the english, have fled back to a simpler nostalgic time of gardening (especially vegetables). There is no question that, given even a window box, gardening is one of the world's most egalitarian hobbies which can be practiced for virtually nothing - I can surely testify to that, being a manic seed sower, saver and propagator. It looked distinctly rocky during 2008/9 for growers such as Beales....and yet, to date, not one single grower has gone out of business in the UK.
We also do things a little differently in that most hybridisers do not work directly for a corporate firm but are free to sell the licences to any number of growers. Chris Warner, for example, works closely with other breeders, particularly Peter James (Eyes for You) and Frank Cowlishaw (Rhapsody in Blue) - they do still have the outsider renegade edge unlike, say Peter Valin, the main hybridiser for Thompson and Morgan.
Many rose growers will also try a bit of breeding during the course of their growing duties (their 'day job') - Trevor White has recently bred a rather good apricot shrub, Lolabelle, while Beales are catching up with Austin, in putting out a troika or quartet of roses each season.
It is a much smaller industry in the UK with growing fields scattered around the country, as far north as Alex Cocker in Aberdeen, to John Scarman in Hampshire - the markets are smaller, more localised and yep, no-one is making big bucks but.....roses, ya know.......
However, England is a little island and again, the great European breeding houses do it a little differently although they have often remained family businesses, even after many generations and, as you point out, Kim, owning the business always gives you the freedom to experiment and play.
Nonetheless, you are quite correct in theorising why the health of the plant has been of increasing importance - Germany is NOT california, with its long hot summers - for sure the HT and floribunda is always the main rose to buy (we all have such little gardens) but there is still an enormous market for shrub roses and 'Park' roses which are grown by local councils (and MUST have innate health and vigour). I think there is also an increasingly important market for so-called groundcover roses - the smaller version of a shrub rose for all of us with our tiny little bits of real estate - these roses are also healthy and beautiful - the flowercarpet series, the county series, and in the US, Drift roses. I have long praised procumbent roses, even when they were not regarded as fashionable (I challenge anyone to come up with a better rose than Sommerwind for everyday use, anywhere).
In short, I have no reason to think that the 'market' is decreasing but is, in fact, becoming increasingly more open to innovation.
It took a long time to come to terms with our sulphurous industrial fumes no longer offering protection from BS (practically unknown in the 20, 30s and 40s if you were an urban rose grower) - clean air was great for our children's lungs but rubbish for rose growers.....and I am not sure that Bayer, Doff, Scotts et al will be looking nervous just yet.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 6:49AM
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peachymomo(Ca 8)

I wonder if there might be a way to begin a change in direction by using the great resource we have here - a vast accumulation of communal knowledge. If one wants a rose that will do well in their particular area the information is usually out there, but it can be hard to find. How about we start some more focused location specific threads where people in similar growing areas can list their best performers? Living in Nor Cal it's fairly easy for me to scroll through lists and pick out posters that are close, but for the rest of the world I assume it's a bit more challenging. Just an idea...

On a separate note, I have always had a passion for gardening but never paid any attention to roses because I was focused on edibles. Until one year in the spring Lady Lutea Banks caught my eye, and then all of a sudden everywhere I looked there were gorgeous roses and I had to have them in my own garden. It is my opinion that many current 'edible only' gardeners are probably ripe for Rose Addiction to set in, think of carrots as a gateway plant ;o)

This post was edited by peachymomo on Wed, Apr 17, 13 at 11:34

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 11:31AM
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Kim stated: 'For all intents and purposes, Henry, the 'American Rose Industry' has been, for many decades, Central and Southern Californian.'

The large American nurseries were then named.

H.Kuska comment: Yes, the growing fields are/were there. However, what was omitted was where they obtained their roses. Many European hybrid tea and florabunda roses were introduced in the U.S. (often with different names) by large American nurseries.
Lets start with 'Madame A. Meilland' (1945), Peace, probably the most famous hybrid tea. Another example, one of the most popular florabundas - Schneewittchen (Iceberg) 1958.

Since the Buck roses were discussed in some detail, the Buck rose Carefree Beauty was first introduced by one of the large American nurseries (1977?).

For those of you that collect J and P catalogues, please verify that they carried some of the Canadian Government roses.

Even roses that were 'stated as bred' by the nurseries are suspect. It is my understanding that nurseries would sometimes buy outright (without giving credit when introduced) (or even steal?) the roses hybridized by 'others'. Uncle Joe and Toro is probably the best known example.


I belonged to 2 local northern Ohio rose societies starting in the early 70s to about 10 years ago. For much of that time, both would organize trips to Canadian nurseries for the purpose of buying Canadian and European roses.

Here is a link that might be useful: Uncle Joe Toro

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 1:33PM
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No matter how carefully you examine and dissect the history and actions of the big entities in the rose industry, the fact remains: the Californians controlled the industry and made the decisions that directed the path the industry took. It matters little whether they originated all of the selections they produced, or chose imported selections from Europe (or wherever), they made the decisions.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 1:53PM
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The following statement was made:

"the fact remains: the Californians controlled the industry and made the decisions that directed the path the industry took."

Earlier the statement was made:
"For all intents and purposes, Henry, the "American Rose Industry" has been, for many decades, Central and Southern Californian. Week's accomplished their breeding and production in Chino and Wasco California. J&P, for nearly three-quarters of a century, accomplished their R&D and breeding as well as production in Somis and Wasco California. Conard Pyle, Star and Star Meilland did their American work in Wasco California. "

H.Kuska comment. Lets see, "many decades" unfortunately "a large number of decades" statement is very vague. Later for J and P "nearly three-quarters of a century". That would be around 70 years? That would be 1943. Perhaps starting with the 50s would be best.

Let's use the order mentioned:

First mentioned: Weeks (or should one say Weeks and Swim, in the early days this company was not on my radar). Yes, it was a California company (apparently it started in 1938). Tom Carruth (a Texan, not a Californian) was in charge of the rose hybridizing effort as Director of Research & Marketing at Weeks Roses from 1988 to 2012. Apparently, the broad goal of Tom’s breeding was to "make the rose a contender with all plants, rather than a fussy queen of the garden. His introductions stress disease resistance, fragrance, floriferousness, novelty & attractive habit."
H.Kuska comment: Sounds like he was one of the "good guys".

Second mentioned: Jackson and Perkins which was originally located in Newark, NY.
"Jackson & Perkins remained a family affair when, in 1928, Charles "Charlie" Perkins, nephew of the founder, succeeded his uncle as President. He furthered the company's involvement in rose hybridization by hiring Dr. Jean Henri Nicolas, an internationally known French hybridizer, to head the new, expanded rose hybridization department. The family home at Newark, known as the Jackson-Perkins House, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2006.[1]

After Dr. Nicolas's death in 1937, Eugene Boerner, his understudy, became J&P's head hybridizer. Boerner made great strides in the floribunda class of rose, a classification name coined by C.H. Perkins, a cousin of Charles. In 1939, Boerner increased J&P's stock of roses by collecting 10,000 cuttings from growers in Europe. These cuttings were instrumental in the successful propagation of new varieties."
"Charlie Perkins died in 1963, followed by Gene Boerner four years later. In 1966, Jackson & Perkins Company was purchased by Harry and David, the world's largest mail order fruit business. Bear Creek Corporation, an umbrella organization, was formed over Harry and David and Jackson & Perkins companies in 1972. Jackson & Perkins focused their business on mail order sales while Bear Creek Gardens oversaw garden center, mass market, and greenhouse sales.

Harry and David moved the rose hybridizing facility to Tustin, California and hired William Warriner to continue the hybridizing work of Boerner. He introduced three hybrids, developed by Gene Boerner, which won AARS awards: Gay Princess in 1967, Gene Boerner in 1969, and "First Prize" in 1970. He went on to win nineteen All-America awards for his rose introductions while working on J&P hybrids.

In 1984, the corporation was sold to R.J. Reynolds Development Corporation. Dr. Keith Zary succeeded Bill Warriner as Director of Research for J&P roses in 1985. He and his team continued the AARS award winning tradition with nine more AARS awards including Mardi Gras, the 2008 AARS award winner."
Third mentioned.Conard Pyle, Star and Star Meilland.

Conard-Pyle Company was/is located in West Grove, Pennsylvania.

You can get an idea of who produced their most famous roses by looking at Help-Me-Find and selecting the years from 1950 through 2009.

Jacques Ferare of Conrad Pyle is active in the rose hybridizers web page.

Perhaps the following 3 quotes may be of interest:

"Betsy van der Hoek [ PM ]
Corrections to Conard-Pyle article in Summer Newsletter
August 25, 2010 10:00PM
My apologies for these slip-ups:

Knock Out was officially released in 2000, not 1999.

Jacques Ferare said that Hybrid Teas were most popular in the West, not the South and West. (I think I might have written Southwest and West, and misread my note.)

Meilland sends Conard-Pyle 400 to 500 new varieties each year for evaluation, not 40-50. That's a big difference and just goes to prove what a big job Mr. Ferare and his company have in evaluating new varieties for marketing.",30214,30214#msg-30214



My mentor Dick Hutton, who was the chairman of CP for many years told me when I started : A good rose is a rose that sells.

The way we select roses has changed significantly over the years but we are still directed by that statement.

There is no question that exhibition type roses have lost a lot of market share, and the trend for them is not good. The consumer demands "easy care" for all plants these days and as a commercial enterprise that's what we try to provide. But what will make a rose sell on the market place can be a lot of different factors, not just disease resistance.

We are woring primarily with 2 "rose hells" with climates that are very condusive to diesases as our primary screening sites, and then work with trials that are strategically located all over the United States with the selections that we think have the best potential.

Hope this helps.


AND (regarding profit from Carefree Beauty)

"Very interesting comments from all.

Bvanderhoek summarized it the best, I could not have said it better. Same with Philip LA about having better odds getting rich with playing Lotto than hybridizing roses. Bill Radler's story is fairly unique, however in our history at Conard-Pyle this has happened before, back in the 1940's and 50's when Francis Meilland got the royalties we sent him for the Peace rose.

Carefree Beauty (another CP introduction) has been off patent for at least 20 years but to this day it is still the most popular and widely planted of all Dr Griffith Buck roses in commerce. And at the time we did send significant checks every year to The University of Iowa where he did all his work.

We should be able to send a significant check to Jim for the Eyeconics and Thrive this summer, and hopefully it will cover the expenses of running his greenhouse.

I can only say this again to all of you, this is first and foremost a labor of love, and it's great to see the enthousiasm on this Forum. Break through in roses, like in any plant breeding, are not coming very often, and the next one has a good statistical chance come from one of you.",42086,42086#msg-42086

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 5:39PM
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sandandsun(9a FL)

I called Mr. Radler a revolutionary. I want to be clear that I meant that as a compliment.
Mr. Radler is a hero. And I very much support the Radler revolution. Without his work and the alternative he provided, change could not have occurred. And from this change, I foresee better roses to come of all sorts.
We humans are notorious for our resistance to change because we fear the worst from it, but sometimes change can be very good. I think this instance is WONDERFUL!

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 5:46PM
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"Without his work and the alternative he provided, change could not have occurred."

Nonsense. The entire industry/consumer paradigm was primed for this to happen, so if Bill hadn't done it, someone (or likely many someone's) would have. If not fifteen years ago, it would be well under way, with or without Radler's contribution. I'm not suggesting Bill's work isn't exceptional and forward-thinking, I am merely stating that he isn't the only person who could have started this revolution. I know many talented people working with the genus who have done similarly exceptional work, but differ only in that they are not as motivated by the urge to blanket the planet with their roses, or to make outrageous sums doing it.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 7:07PM
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seil zone 6b MI

The fact that the industry is mainly located in CA is a no brainer. Roses grow better there. They have a longer season and the plants mature faster so they can get them to the market sooner and make more money. Duh! None of these companies are non-profits folks. If they were we wouldn't be having this conversation because there probably wouldn't BE a rose industry.

Hindsight is always Monday morning quarter backing...but not always accurate. That the industry was led in one direction is a matter of what was popular and wanted at that time. During those decades, for the most part, people wanted those beautiful spiraling HT blooms they saw in magazines. They weren't looking for disease resistance because ecological concerns weren't around yet. So breeders and growers weren't concerned about such things either. They were looking for sales. And all those lovely, if not resistant, HTs sold. A LOT! You can not condemn them for doing what was the best thing to do at that time. It wasn't until much later that the ecology movement brought disease resistance to the attention of both the industry and the public. And since that time breeders and the industry have begun to move more in that direction. Kudos to them!

It always annoys me that people so quickly condemn the actions of previous generations without considering what the previous times were like and what was and/or wasn't around or popular in those times. Just remember, we will be judged by future generations in this manner too. And even though we think we are doing our best they'll probably condemn us as well. And perhaps just as wrongly because they will not have any true sense or idea of what our times were really like and what concerns we faced. It's all part of the evolution of the human species. Thankfully we often do learn from our mistakes but that shouldn't and doesn't give us the right to condemn our predecessors.

I wish some of those people would push a little harder, Paul. I'm mightily tired of Knock Outs being the only rose being touted as disease resistant, which, as I've stated, it isn't here. I'm sure some of these other hybridizers have come up with some roses that are as resistant and maybe a little prettier? Please!

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 7:53PM
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seil, have you grown recent rose introductions from Pickering and Palatine? Before my health problems, there appeared to be more good new rose introductions each year than I could keep up with.

When I cut back from 1000 to about 60, a number of Paul Barden's roses made the cut. Maybe he can recommend some to you for Michigan.


Here is a link that might be useful: list of roses that made the cut from around 1000 to around 60.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 8:14PM
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seil zone 6b MI

Thank you, Henry! I do know they're out there. I just wish more people did and that they got a lot more hype so that the KOs didn't seem like the only game in town for most landscapers and homeowners. That's my beef.

You're very brave. I can't imagine cutting back from 1000 to just 60. I'm having a hard time cutting down my mere 150! Who to keep and who to lose is so hard to decide.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 10:15PM
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sandandsun(9a FL)

Neither before nor since Mr. Radler's introductions has any other "line" of US roses been introduced as disease resistant. The question or even the idea of who might have or could have also done so is entirely moot.

Mr. Radler did it.
One might call him the father of American disease resistant roses.

Disease resistant roses are obviously a very popular idea. Any hybridizer with disease resistant roses not bred from Radler's line would also be known to us all like the Knock-Outs and the ADR roses coming from Germany and France.

And hybridizers who are doing so are being recognized when they allow their roses to be tested. (As an example, see the link below about the 2012 AOE for a very blackspot tolerant mini).

I seem to remember that the subject of this thread is Mr. Carruth's article and its commentary and criticisms. Maybe you all should attack Mr. Carruth for not understanding the rose industry, or roses, or rose organizations. Maybe attack him for being so insensitive of the feelings of those responsible. Or attack him for even daring to write such things. You could assert, I suppose, that he doesn't have the experience, the insider knowledge, or credentials of any sort that would allow him to write with authority on the subject.
I, of course, would not participate.

Here is a link that might be useful: David Zlesak

    Bookmark   April 17, 2013 at 10:27PM
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sandandsun(9a FL)


    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 10:58AM
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Rose growing is on the decline in Sweden as well. Not many of the reasons for the decline in the US are applicable here. We have seen little of the European economic crisis so far, Swedish gardeners do not spray against diseases and if they were so inclined it would not be easy to find a spray available to home consumers. We have to rely on soap, sodium benzoate, vegetable oil or milk. HT's are not the most common type of rose here and rose shows are unknown.

Still, roses are getting rarer in ordinary gardens. Swedish gardens are increasingly being paved over or covered in enormous wooden decks for al fresco dining with huge sets of so-called lounge furniture. So silly in this climate. I was asked by Bill Grant in January 2011 to fill in a questionnaire on rose growing in Sweden and that is what I had to tell him.

But there is a countermovement called Rosens Dag (Rose Day). It is a collaboration between the Swedish Rose Society, the country's largest chain of garden centers and POM, The Programme for Cultivated Diversity. It's funded partly by the Department of Agriculture and a foundation for promoting farming.

The name for July 2 is Rosa (Sweden still has a remnant of the old catholic saint's calendar but the names are now modern) and this day is Rose Day. There are arrangements all over the country on this day, privately and publicly.

I spent Rose Day three years ago in a local rose nursery, sitting by a desk covered with rose books, pamphlets on rose growing locally and lists of roses suitable in my climate, advising anyone who asked me. There is a list for each growing zone in Sweden with enticing rose pictures. It is a meagre list for the far north near the Arctic circle but it is reliable and roses are grown in the north as in the rest of the country.

I've spent nice Rose Days in great rose gardens, more like a rose fair with talks by prominent rosarians, tasting of rose food and rose drinks, sale of roses, inventorying the visitors' heritage roses, etc.

One part of this campaign is to educate the industry and there are classes for nurserymen, landscape contractors and garden designers.

I am sorry the link is to a Swedish-only page. But you may enjoy the pictures, all taken in Sweden by the administrator of Rosens Dag, a friend of mine. She distributed 1400 roses from rose firms in the US, UK, France, Germany and Denmark to 123 Swedish rose growers from every zone. I had 12 plants of 6 varieties for trial over three years.

Here is a link that might be useful: Rosens Dag

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 1:22PM
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nanadollZ7 SWIdaho(Zone 7 Boise SW Idaho)

Thank you for the link to the Rose Day photos, Marianne. The scenes were so lush and beckoning, I wanted to somehow walk into those settings and enjoy the beauty and scent. The birdsong accompanying the photos really added to the charm of the scenes. What roses did you trial and how did they work out? Diane

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 2:51PM
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ingrid_vc so. CA zone 9

Thank you, Marianne, I really enjoyed the photos. My dog thought the bird song was very interesting; he just couldn't figure out why we suddenly had birds inside.

What a pity that the lack of interest in roses seems to be prevalent in many countries. People just don't know what they're missing.


    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 2:51PM
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I have trialled one Kordes floribunda, Rotkäppchen, and five Tantau roses, the floribundas Pastella, Mariatheresia, Baronesse and Alabaster and one climber, Uetersener Klosterrose. All have been doing well but Rotkäppchen is the best so far. All have oldfashioned form and are healthy. Our summer was very dry which I suppose is the reason why the climber did not flower as well this year as last year when it was glorious. It has grown well though. I put up a photo of it in the rose gallery last year. This photo is of the Tantau floribundas.

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 3:24PM
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nanadollZ7 SWIdaho(Zone 7 Boise SW Idaho)

That is lovely, Marianne, a very charming arrangement. Do you have anymore closeup photos of the Tantau roses? I want them all! Forum member sandandsun just posted a link to a new red Tantau called Gospel. Have you heard of it? It won a European fragrance award and looks beautiful, of course. Diane

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 3:35PM
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I had not heard of Gospel but I looked it up in the Tantau catalogue. They send the new catalogue to us trialling their roses and Gospel is on this year's cover so they must be proud of it. It looks lovely.

I can put up only one picture at a time so here is Baronesse:

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 4:49PM
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Marianesse, if you first upload your photos to Flickr or probably even Photobucket, you can copy and past the code from those sites to GW and insert as many photos in each post as you desire. I use Flickr because it was the preferred site for the old Rose Hybridizers Association forum format. It works as easily and efficiently here as it did there. These sites are free unless you intend to use tremendous storage, so though it adds a step or two, it permits you to include pretty much what you desire in each post. Simply mentioned in case it makes it easier for you. Kim

    Bookmark   November 2, 2013 at 6:28PM
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nanadollZ7 SWIdaho(Zone 7 Boise SW Idaho)

Thanks, Marianne. Baronesse is a beauty. Diane

    Bookmark   November 3, 2013 at 1:09AM
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I don't find it difficult to understand why American gardeners have largely abandoned the rose as the ultimate gardening subject; too much work and too little reward, in many cases. The act of applying fungicides alone is a hurdle most won't jump anymore, myself included.

You may be shocked by this, but honestly - I found that I got far more enjoyment from a half dozen hanging baskets filled with Calibrachoa this summer than I got from any of the roses I still have. Calibrachoa is an easy plant, inexpensive and needs nothing more than water and an occasional bit of nitrogen to give a non-stop explosion of color till frost. The same cannot be said of most of the 3000 roses I once grew.

    Bookmark   November 3, 2013 at 10:30AM
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Paul, how about writing a book on how to make rose growing easy? You could kill 2 birds with one stone as you could use your photography interest to illustrate the book.

Another possible rose book would be about about Ralph Moore's rose life.

    Bookmark   November 3, 2013 at 2:23PM
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ingrid_vc so. CA zone 9

It took me a long time to find out which roses worked for me, in an admittedly difficult environment, and then a rose that worked well for some years, like Burgundy Iceberg, suddenly decided to have blackspot and pass it on.

I wish I could start over again with a clean slate and with the knowledge I have now. With roses being taken out or moved, I've often been left with spots to put new roses that are too close to other roses or not right for that particular rose, and glaringly empty spots. The whole thing strikes me as a hodgebodge which is further removed from my dream garden than ever. I hope that with six new roses to plant soon I can try to alleviate some of these defects. The bottom line is - roses are indispensable to me but they're not easy.


    Bookmark   November 3, 2013 at 3:12PM
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Wood Molding & Trim: Home Legend Flooring Teak Huntington 3/4 in. Thick x 3/4
$15.98 | Home Depot
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