Anyone grow old garden roses in zone 2/3?

weeper_11(2b SK)January 12, 2013

I was thinking of buying a few albas and maybe a gallica or two this spring, but I am unsure as to whether they will survive and bloom. Does anyone grow these, and have them bloom reliably? If their canes suffer dieback will they not bloom that year? I love their look and history, but I don't want to waste time and money on them if they won't do well.

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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

Yes! I have several, they're my favourite romantic ridiculousness. They do very well with very basic protection. Do you want a complete listing?

    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 4:53PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

Don't trouble yourself, but if it is just a copy-and-paste job, I would love to know what you have! What do you consider "basic protection"?

    Bookmark   January 12, 2013 at 5:18PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

Well, I only have a couple that are established - Madame Plantier has very flexible, thornless canes and can be bent to the ground and covered with leaves, burlap and a rock. Zero dieback on it and I trim it for shape at about 5' x 2'. Celestial is a 3' x 3' shrub and I loosely wrap it in burlap and leaves, but it seems to be hardy above the snow line anyway. R. Gallica versicolor is very short (18") and very suckery in my garden. Those 3 are 8 years old and all bloom well every year.
This past spring I also planted Cardinal de Richlieu, Chloris, Koenig Von Danemark, and Fantin Latour. They were looking nicely established by fall and KvD even bloomed one little bloom.
It's getting harder to find Albas and Pickerings was discontinuing one or two so I bought those 4.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 1:21AM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

I was thinking of buying some from Old Rose nursery in BC. I especially like Celestial, Chloris and Koenig Von Danemark(I like pink! I wish alba's came in the colors of Gallica's as well though..) I'll have to remember to ask you how they did this spring. So other than Madame Plantier, you just loosely wrap it in burlap and then fill it up with leaves? Sounds good, I think I'll be making an order! I think the risk is worth having one or two of these beauties survive. Of the old roses, are Albas the most fragrant? I love fragrant plants!

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 8:13AM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

Albas are crazy fragrant. My only complaint is they seem to be largely similar to each other, in looks and smell. But Celestial has beautiful greyish leaves, and Mme Plantier has a very unusual form all over.

I ordered my first ones from Old Rose Nursery, but the original owners let it go badly while they were trying to sell it. It would be great to see the new owners increase their varieties for sale. Until then I'll keep ordering from Pickerings. Poor Pickerings, I know a lot of people don't like them but they are getting screwed over by USDA and can't ship to the US currently.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 12:23PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

Thanks for the insight about ORN. I'll wait to see their 2013 catalog, but I agree that it doesn't look like there is a whole lot for sale, especially for our zone. I've never ordered from Pickerings, but my only complaint was that few of their roses are own root.

I do agree about Alba's all looking quite similar, I wish there was more color variety. Not that I currently have a bunch of space for them anyway...(but I know I'll order now, figure that out later!)

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 2:20PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

The cost of producing and shipping own-root potted roses is huge. I like that I can often find own-root common varieties like Explorers and Mordens at box stores now, but it's not a deal breaker for me. I've grown a lot of roses both ways and I've had good luck with the shrink-wrapped bundles of firewood that arrive from Pickerings springing happily to life and not producing rootstock suckers. I'm certain that a vigorous variety will be growing on its own roots in a few years anyway.

I would totally order from ORN again if they start offering more varieties. The shipping was killer to MB even back then, though.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 4:29PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

What about Corn Hill nursery? Any experience with them? That was another one I was considering.

On the topic of own-root vs. grafted...so if a certain rose is grafted, and it normally produces suckers, will it still produce suckers, or will it not, because it doesn't have it's own roots?

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 5:02PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

Whoa, I'm getting old. I just looked and the ones I bought last year were from Corn Hill. They are shipped bareroot. I thought I'd ordered them from Pickerings. I think Corn Hill's roses are own-root aren't they??

A grafted rose that suckers can definitely produce true to form suckers. It might take longer to start though.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 5:27PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

Corn Hill's are own-root, I believe, yes.

I didn't realise ORN ships in pots! If they do, I certainly can't afford that. Nor do I think it is necessary. I wonder why they would bother?

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 5:43PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

I don't know the official reason, but it definitely reduces stress on the plant. It also lengthens the shipping season because they don't have to stay dormant.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 6:54PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

Yeah, I guess...there are just so many other places that ship bare-root, I would think they would too. Oh well, maybe I'll just go with Corn Hill this year.

A couple of their scotch roses look tempting too.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 7:32PM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

Placed my order with Corn Hill!

I ordered
DOORENBOS (Scotch)
DOUBLE SCOTCH PINK (Scotch)
STANWELL PERPETUAL (Scotch)
MAIDEN'S BLUSH (Alba)
QUEEN OF DENMARK (Alba)
ROSERAIE DE L'HAY (Rugosa)
WASAGAMING (Rugosa)

I decided to just buy 2 Alba's this year and no Gallica's, to test-drive whether they will survive in my cold, fairly exposed garden. Can't wait!

    Bookmark   January 17, 2013 at 2:10PM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

Nice! That photo of Double Scotch Pink is so pretty. Rugosas seem to be cane hardy above the snow in my garden, although it is fairly sheltered. Agnes was 7.5 feet tall a couple of years ago until I pruned it! And Blanc Double de Coubert is too but I'm not sure if it's spent a hard winter above the snow yet.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2013 at 11:01PM
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marciaz3 Tropical 3 Northwestern Ontario

I have Blanc Double de Coubert - didn't know she was an old garden rose! She's done quite well, though her spot has ended up being too shady (and having dug up Hansa, i don't want to dig up Blanche!) I don't think there's ever been any dieback on her in the half a dozen years that i've had her.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2013 at 7:43AM
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weeper_11(2b SK)

Corn Hill says the Blanc rose is from 1892. I don't think Rugosa's are really considered an old garden rose, though. Northspruce would know better. I just included them because that was my complete order!

If everything survives well next winter I'll have to get more!

    Bookmark   January 18, 2013 at 8:58AM
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northspruce(z3a MB CDA)

I consider Rugosas sort of an "alternative" rose rather than modern or historical. A lot of their development was around 1900 so most OGR enthusiasts will give them the time of day.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2013 at 4:00PM
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