New to forum and need help selecting suitable antique roses

kater17(9)August 14, 2014

Hi everyone! I'm new to this forum, although I have been gardening in Central Florida for several years....mainly perennials and very much in the English style (that's where I'm from). I really want to add in some antique roses, maybe 5 or 6 different shrub types, to my borders but I would love advice on ones that you all find truly fabulous! (And can't live without). I have a Crepescule which I will post a pic of which I love and some Julia Child's which are doing wonderfully. The David Austin's I chose a few years ago just hated life (or me) and faded away! Any advice on what would be great to try next would be really welcome ...(I am a lazy sprayer so disease resistance is important!). Thank you

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vmr423(Zone 8b, SC)

If you're in Central Florida, you should probably get in touch with Rose Petals Nursery and/or Angel Gardens. These are two well-stocked rose nurseries in Florida with owners who are quite knowledgeable about their roses. You should be able to get some good advice from them:

Generally speaking, you'll probably find that Teas, Chinas, and Noisettes are your best bets for a no-spray garden in the hot'n'humid Southeast states. You might like some of the Bermuda Mystery Roses also...

Hybrid Teas are a mixed bag in terms of disease resistance- some have old-fashioned blooms like the Austin roses and are disease-resistant, and then there are some beautiful older HT's such as 'Madame Caroline Testout' and 'Madame Abel Chatenay' that have enough Tea ancestry to like those same conditions.

Some of the Hybrid Musks might be good options also.

Your Crepuscule is beautiful!

Good luck,

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 3:15PM
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organic_tosca(9/Sunset 14)

I remember a poster on this forum who raved about the performance of 'Le Vesuve' in her Florida garden.

That is a LOVELY photo of a lovely rose.

Welcome to the forum - keep us updated on which roses you plant and how they work out for you. I can guarantee you will love them!


    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 5:40PM
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seil zone 6b MI

Can't give you an relevant advice since I'm in Michigan but welcome to the forum! I do know there are many active rose societies in Florida and you might want to contact one of them as well as the local nurseries. They will have good advice on what does well there.

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 6:11PM
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Thank you so much! Virginia I will definitely check out those two rose growers and those two Madames are absolutely gorgeous and have gone right to the top of the list. Thank you Laura too! I looked up Le Vesuve and that is another lovely rose...yes I think it was Sherry in Ocala, so if she loves it there I will definitely try it. Thank you for the welcome Seil..everyone is so friendly here! I love reading through all the posts.
I love my Crepescule grows over our courtyard wall. Sadly it is the only rose I can have to the front of the property because we are overrun with four legged termites! (Namely deer!). So roses last about 5 mins there. The back is fenced thankfully!

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 6:39PM
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poorbutroserich(Nashville 7a)

I highly recommend Angel Gardens. Pam will work with you to help you make choices. Her garden is all organic.
I visited her last year and saw a beautiful Mrs. B.R. Cant that really struck my fancy. And I know there are some Austins that do well for her there.
Welcome to the forum!

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 7:05PM
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vmr423(Zone 8b, SC)

Something I completely forgot to mention is that you should go to the rose garden at FSC in Lakeland if you are anywhere nearby. (I keep thinking FSC is in South Florida, but Lakeland is my idea of Central Florida?)

Dr Malcolm Manners is a rosarian who drops in at this forum on occasion, and I believe that he was instrumental in the design of the garden... And if I'm not mistaken, a shrub rose he recommends for that area is 'Edith Schurr'. (Link below)

Luckily, I don't have a problem with deer here, so I can still say, "Awww, how cute!" when I do see them. Just don't get me started on squirrels... ;>)

Have fun planning your garden,

Here is a link that might be useful: 'Edith Schurr' at HMF

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 7:10PM
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This is all wonderful information! Thank you all so much for your help. I was already gardening obsessed...I think this is going to add to that obsession!

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 8:17PM
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Welcome! I am glad to find a fellow floridian. I m new to gardening and so far have a mediocre success with growing anything in Orlando. I am trying very hard to grow roses but with the sun, sand and nematodes I kinda put everything on hold. However, last week I discovered Nelson roses. They are about 30 min from where I live and grow roses on fortuniana stock. I just stop by briefly as I was having such a headache (could be from my amazement at seas of roses lined up on the concrete or the 100 degree temp!). They dont have many DA but do carry Abe, Tamora, Heritage and LD Braithwaithe( sorry not sure about the name). The manager has been working there for many years and very friendly and informative. He says that they only carry roses that have been tested to flower all year. It is better to call before visiting.He also has the fertilizer for roses!

    Bookmark   August 14, 2014 at 8:45PM
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Thanks Eden. I will have to check back with Nelson's. I actually went there many years ago but I wasn't impressed at the time. Maybe it was the time of year or perhaps things have improved. I didn't even know they sold any DA's so I will definitely call them and go and take a look again. Ugh I sympathize about the headache and the's been brutal recently...and yep I'm still out there gardening in it!

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 7:05AM
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Yes you'd be very welcome to visit our gardens at Florida Southern College in Lakeland, where you could see over 200 varieties, most of them well-adapted to our hot, humid climate. Let me know when you're coming and I'll try to arrange to lead the tour.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 5:43PM
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That would be wonderful! Thank you...I will definitely take you up on that offer.

    Bookmark   August 15, 2014 at 6:04PM
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buford(7 NE GA)

tosca, I think that is Shericola, she lives in Central Florida. She hasn't been posting that much since she is caring for her husband.

I second that you should grow noisettes and teas. They do well in hot humid weather. I have Crepescule and other favorite is Reve d'Or. Neither requires spray in hot sticky Atlanta, so they should do well for you.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2014 at 11:21AM
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he Central Fla. Heritage Rose Society is based at FSC in Lakeland and meets monthly starting in Sept., Dr. Manners is our resident guru and past Pres. It has a great bunch of 'rosies' who gladly share their knowledge....the meetings are the second Sunday of the month at 2:30 PM...and we also have a 'cookie room'...hope to see you there...LO, sally

    Bookmark   August 16, 2014 at 2:18PM
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Thank you both and I shall definitely try to make one of those meetings! Honestly never knew there were so many resources here in Florida so this is all great!

    Bookmark   August 16, 2014 at 5:18PM
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Hi, kater17, since you mentioned sand and nematodes and you have an abundance of choices in roses to grow (bunches of Teas if you have room), I will only say COMPOST! I had the advantage of free composted horse manure, being in horse country. Check out the Thrifty Nickles and online ads for folks looking to divest themselves of the black gold. My benefactor had a broodmare farm AND a backhoe. Every spring I piled on 3 or 4 inches of the lovely stuff which turned my gray, cement-like sand into beautiful black stuff that gave a good imitation of soil.

Well, I have another word for you...water. I use a micro system with sprayer heads that put out a mist, basically, that water the entire bed not just the immediate root area. I water daily in order to keep water flowing consistently downward. It's not a lot of water (only 30 minutes) but the consistent application prevents drying out. I know others use drippers but in my garden a few inches away was bone dry. The same with soaker hoses, and I know some who use them. I love the misting. It doesn't seem like much, but it works. The compost is amazing for maintaining moisture. I have stuck my finger a few inches down in the naked compost at 5PM in the summer sun and found moisture. Amazing stuff. You will have microbes and organic matter to ward off the nematodes (I don't grow Fortuniana rooted roses) and the roses will love you.

Have fun with your roses!


Here is a link that might be useful: My old abandoned blog

    Bookmark   August 29, 2014 at 12:13AM
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Welcome. Yes to Teas, Chinas, Noisettes and Belinda's Dream. Elina is a great HT for Florida on Fortuniana. Yes to manure in all your flower beds. Amazing what it does to Florida sand after a few years of applying. Yes to lots of water.

Your Crespuscule is lovely. It's one of my favorite roses.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2014 at 10:24AM
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Thank you both! I'm so glad I joined this forum because I have garnered so much information in just a couple of weeks! Elina is one that I have not heard of and I see it is a David Austin so I might give it a whirl as I have not had much luck with the DA's. Sherry, thank you so much for the info on the irrigation system. I currently have mainly soaker hoses, although every few days I seem to have the Niagara Falls as I keep cutting through them! So you have had a lot of success with the micro mist? Excuse my ignorance but does the lower part of the rose get misted and is that a problem in terms of leaves staying moist? I know...stupid question really as we are talking Central Florida in summer! Also...and I'm probably opening up another can of worms here too, but I am trying to educate myself on benefits of own root/Fortuniana for Florida. Some people seem very adamant about own root and others not and I'm getting confused!

    Bookmark   August 29, 2014 at 2:08PM
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Kater, I mostly have OGRs and just a few HTs on Dr Huey bought at Lowe's (cheap). My Mrs BR Cant is on fort from the Apopka nursery (forget the name). Personally, (and I think I must be outnumbered) I don't like the growth habit and I don't think it's necessary re nematodes when the garden is well composted. (The most important reason I water the whole bed is to create a moist and healthy environment for the microbes which feed the plants and repel the nematodes.) OGRs typically come only on their own roots, although Dr Manners buds them and puts them up for sale at the Lakeland meetings. If you google nematodes/roses/Florida, you'll find articles by the FL IFAS on the subject. Apparently, the acids put out by the decomposing organics repel the nematodes. Organics create a hostile environment for them, countering the effect of hot, dry sand. That's what I've read, and I hesitate to contradict anything that Dr Manners does. His USF garden is all fort-budded roses. Another consideration for me was the expense which is about double if you can find them. Roses on fort get very large. HTs get to 6 to 8 feet tall.

I installed my micro system from parts bought at Lowe's. A semi-strenuous process and only sort of like rocket science. Do it in the winter when it's cool. With the 180-degree heads you can cover the whole garden by spacing them accordingly with little or no wasted water. My beds are generally 6 feet wide which is the spread of the sprinklers.

Spacing of roses when planting is crucial. Roses start out tiny and grow quite large at maturity here, so the temptation will be to space them close, but be strong and resist the temptation or you'll be digging them up and moving them. No fun. Six foot centers are minimum, and your tea roses can get to a width of 8' in 3 or 4 years plus you need access room for pruning, etc. It may look funny for a while to have so much space between your roses, but you can fill in with annuals or perennials until the roses get bigger. That will give you a cottage-y look anyway.

Pine bark mulch is good. It will decompose and add to the organics. Roses like alfalfa. I get the 50-lb bags of pellets from the feed store for horses. Rose Tone is good, and there are recipes for making your own organic fertilizer. Just google it. A soil test from your county extension service would be good.

This is a great forum full of great, lovely people. Welcome!


Here is a link that might be useful: Good info at Marion County Rose Society

    Bookmark   August 29, 2014 at 10:42PM
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I really appreciate your wonderful advice! I think then my $$ will definitely go towards a really thorough bed preparation before I get too out of control buying roses! Your roses look incredible so I can see how important all of this is. :-)

    Bookmark   August 30, 2014 at 9:26AM
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