The Most Fragrant Roses

Nell JeanMay 1, 2009

What is your most fragrant rose?

I'm asking, not about a rose that smells good when you bring your nose near the rose.

I want to hear about fragrance noticed from 20 feet away in a slight breeze,

from only a few blooms, that makes you stop and say, "Wow! What is THAT?"

It is a similar effect as from a border of Dianthus Pinks.

Confederate Jasmine is starting to bloom here. It can be overwhelming if you venture close.

So, what's your most fragrant rose?


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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

Well I think I can give you the name of one, I don't know if it gives the same results with only a few flowers open though. I was taken on a Rose tour of Vancouver gardens, when we got to one garden that was chock-a-block full of old roses (you can imagine the fragrance) I caught a whiff of something that delighted MY nose, following said nose it led me around the side of the house and there she was "Felicite Parmentier", one of the alba roses. She's thorny but if I had the room I'd be growing this one.


    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 11:31AM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

Argghhh! hit submit too soon, in my garden the one that comes to mind is Abraham Darby. I don't know about the 20 feet though, will have to test it out when he blooms :o). A

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 11:37AM
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Ddouble de Coubert, a white rugosa. Maybe not 20 feet but close. Add to that garden heliotrope and you can smell it everywhere in the yard.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 11:58AM
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Marie Pavie--polyantha

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 2:23PM
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Undoubtedly, my most fragrant rose is the unknown antique or heirloom (rambler?) rose which is blooming right now. I think it may be an Alba, but haven't identified it yet. I have several clumps of it around the garden. Some is pruned and kept as a large shrub clump and some is trained up onto an arch. No thorns. It has 3-inch cupped, many petaled, blousey, solid medium-pink blooms. I have it planted by every pathway where I can enjoy it no matter where I walk in the garden.

I was just thinking a few minutes ago that I need to get it started out in the front yard. Grows in full sun. No diseases and no insect problems. Drought tolerant, but does best when it gets adequate rain.

It only blooms in Spring, but it is well worth the wait for it to bloom every year. It blooms for about 4-6 weeks. I have a one acre garden around the house and it's fragrance permeates the air. Wish I could share it with you.

It dries well and continues to hold it's fragrance, so makes excellent potpourri and dream pillows.

Here are three photos of it - one taken with a regular camera and scanned into my files and the next two taken with my first digital camera. Not the best quality images. Use your rose imaginations. (WHEN I get me new camera this week, I will TRY to get some good pictures of it).

1. The shrub - first year it bloomed (Abt 2003)

2. On the arch - May 2007

3. Another one on the same arch - May 2007


    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 3:18PM
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girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

I think mine is Cl. American Beauty - the woman who owned our house bought it bare root from a discount store so she isn't sure. It is definately own root since I've propagated it into two and it is identical.

It smells like a mix of lemon and 50's perfume!

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 3:37PM
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alisande(Zone 4b)

Fragrance is a big thing for me, and the hands-down winner is Gertrude Jekyll, an Austin. It's the purest rose perfume, and it's intense and wonderful. I love her form, too.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 8:33PM
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Oh, my, she is beautiful! She has been on 'wish list' for a long time now. I had to quit going to the Rose Forum because my list kept growing!


    Bookmark   May 2, 2009 at 1:38AM
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These two are beautiful roses.

Annie, I forgot my two Albas, one started out as white semi-plena but is now a lovely light pink and does perfume the whole back yard. I hadn't realized it, but it is the most disease free rose I have (both of them), no RRD or blackspot or anything.

I will be looking forward to some pictures with that new camera!

I think I have one in the garden called America, but no fragrance. That one on your house is beaultiful, ggg.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2009 at 5:34AM
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Fragrance of the blooms and number of blooms on a plant are the two factors that determine whether the scent will waft away from a rose bush. Double Delight has enough scent, but there usually aren't enough blooms open at a time for the scent to waft. So what you need is a highly scented rose that makes clusters of blooms at one time. Many of the David Austins fit this bill. I have Abraham Darby and Gertrude Jekyll and they are both excellent in this category. GJ has a little stronger fragrance, but Abe usually puts out more blooms. I've noticed the same effect from Madame Alfred Carriere and Prosperity when they are in full bloom. I've also heard that Darlow's Enigma is good for this.

Here is a link that might be useful: Clusters of roses

    Bookmark   May 2, 2009 at 9:46AM
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BecR(zone 9 CA 19)

Here is Sharifa Asma, she's definitely a winner in the wafting fragrance category!!! :-)

    Bookmark   May 2, 2009 at 4:53PM
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eduarda(Z10 - Portugal)

My two most fragrant roses are Jude, The Obscure (an Austin) and Ispahan, a damask. Ispahan is currently in bloom and its fragrance really travels in the air. See the gallery for pics of it which I have posted under the garden in Spring thread.


    Bookmark   May 2, 2009 at 5:35PM
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little_dani(9, S. Tex Coast)

My favorite in my garden, 'Aimee Vibert'.

Wonderfully wafting- delicious fragrance! Very hardy, no BS.

This is a very easy rose to love, grow, care for!


    Bookmark   May 3, 2009 at 9:07AM
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