Dwarf Polyanthas

This is a group of roses of dwarf habit all of which produce compact clusters of small flowers throughout the season. They are excellent for bedding and make grand edgings for borders. They can be had in a wide range of colouring and the foliage is usually disease-free. The Floribundas are more vigorous and require more room and I have . used some of the stronger types for low hedges. Some of the varieties, for instance, Anne Poulsen, are fragrant.

My favourite Dwarf Polyanthas are Paul Crampel, an I orange scarlet; Gwyneth, a clear yellow; Sheelagh Baird, pink and rich rose; Little Dorrit, a coral salmon; Ideal, a dark scarlet; Ellen Poulsen, a cherry rose; and Lady Reading, a crimson.


These are an attractive form of bedding roses with continuity of flowering. They are on the whole vigorous and should be planted 600 to 600 mm (24 to 24 in).

The following are some of my favourites: Charles Dickens, a semi-double salmon; Dearest, a soft rosy salmon; Elizabeth of Glamis, salmon pink; Franklin Englemann, bright scarlet; Ice White, a scented white; Lilac Chain, pure mauve; Jiminy Cricket, scented orange salmon; Lili Marlene, crimson scarlet; Merlin, yellow, overlayed pink; Red Gold, a bicolour of red and gold; Sea Pearl, pearly pink, upright; Arthur Bell, a chrome yellow; Dicksons Flame, a flame scarlet; and Lively Lady, a vermilion double, fragrant.

Weeping Standards

It was Dean Hole who described weeping standards as a ‘floral mountain’, for the branches must be trained to an umbrella shape and grow with their long branches tumbling downwards. It is usual to have a hoop of wood or wire conveniently supported near the top of the tree, over which the growths are trained. The trees should be 1.5 to 2 m (5 or 6 ft) in height to give plenty of room for the drooping branches.

You cannot expect a weeping standard to flower the first summer after planting, for it is necessary to cut back the growths to five eyes from the base. It is as a result of such pruning that strong weeping growths develop that flower the following year. Plant the weeping standards in October or early November while the soil is still warm. You will need to have them as single specimens on the lawn, or in the front garden. You cannot mix them in a rose bed or plant them in a shrub border.

Though weeping standards are expensive to buy they generally last for about twenty years so that they are good value for money.

My favourite varieties are: Albertine, a coppery pink; Lady Godiva, a flesh pink; Alberic Barbier, a creamy white; Emily Gray, a yellow; and Excelsis, a bright scarlet.

China Roses

These are very free-flowering and many claim that they are in bloom a month throughout the spring until late autumn. They are excellent for massing and for hedges. When pruning they are best thinned and one or two of the strongest shoots cut back to encourage new growths from the base. I usually do the thinning after the main summer flowering but some friends of mine cut theirs down hard late in April.

My favourite China roses are: Laurette Messimy, a rose-shaded yellow; Common China, a fragrant pink; Armoise Superiere, a crimson; Perle D’or, yellow shaded orange.

Moss Roses

These have received their name because on the outside of the buds there grows a moss-like calyx. They thus look particularly attractive. All moss roses are strong growers and must be pruned moderately in consequence. The old wood can be removed and the bush thinned out. Those who love fragrant roses should certainly go in for this type. May favourite moss roses are: Common Moss, a pale rose; Crested Moss, a heavily mossed pink; Golden Moss, a yellow; Blanche Morreau, a white; and Henryi Martin, a deep red.

Musk Roses

The musk roses are the most sweetly scented type of all, The actual aroma comes from the stamens. The musk roses planted today are largely hybrids and look well as isolated bushes or massed in beds. They make quite a good hedge. Prune them as little as possible. Just thin out some of the old wood in March. My favourite musks are: Cornelia, a straw-berry flushed yellow; Penelope, a fine pink; Vanity, a bright pink; Bonn, an orange scarlet; Elmshorn, a reddish pink; Falicia, fragrant pink shaded yellow; Prosperity, a white.


These have rough leaves and thorns. They are hardy and free-flowering and usually produce large blooms the whole summer. They bear brilliant red seed pods in the autumn and so are very ornamental. They require little pruning after the first season except perhaps the cutting away of thin and dead wood. Rugosas are grand hedging plants. My favourite Rugosas: Blanc double de Coubert, a very fragrant white; F. J. Grootendoorst, a bright red; Cecile Brunner, a blush pink; Broomfield Abundance, similar to above; Pink Grootendoorst, a clear pink with frilled rosettes; Rose a Parfum de L’Hay, brilliant red; Scabrosa, deep mauve pink.

Provence Roses

An old hardy fragrant type of rose; a very gross feeder; one that loves plenty of organic manure. There is the old cabbage rose as it is usually called; the Red Provence, a deep rose with a large open flower; and White Provence, a pure white. The Provence roses are pruned in the same way as the Moss Roses. Common Provence is a fragrant pink.

R Bourbons These have smooth thick leaves, large curved thorns and the flowers are produced on laterals growing on the old wood, very little pruning is practised as a rule other than to thin out and cut back some of the laterals by about one-third.

My favourite Bourbons are: Zephyrine Drouhin, a sweet scented silvery pink, very free flowering and grand for a hedge; and Kathleen Harrop, a pale sort of Zephyrine.

, Damasks The roses that are said to have been introduced by the Crusaders; the flowers are fragrant, borne in clusters, and the leaves are apple-green. They are all of them summer flowering. In March the shoots should be thinned out if necessary. The pruner should aim to keep the best one year old and two year old wood, as well as the strongest well-placed laterals.

Rose Species

There are a large number of botanical species which are usually planted in shrub borders. Some have brightly coloured fruits; others have attractive crimson foliage; some have red thorns; others are intensely scented. Some nurserymen specialize in these species and those who are interested in planting them should study the catalogues.

My favourite species are: Hugonis, a brilliant single yellow; Joseph’s Coat, a yellow orange and carmine; Rosa moyesii Geranium, a dwarf crimson lake; R. pomifera, because of its red apple-like fruits; R. willmottiae, because of its orange red fruits and fragrant foliage; R. moyesii, because of its ruby red flowers and sealing wax red pitcher-shaped fruits; and R. alba because it is the Jacobite Rose.


The bulk of the rose bushes planted today fall into this group, for the normal bush rose is undoubtedly the most popular of all.

The H.T.’s certainly furnish the finest most constant ‘ flowerers and best varieties both for exhibition and garden decoration. They dominate all others because of their exquisite colouring and graceful pleasing formation of the flowers. They are easy to prune.

There are such large numbers of varieties to choose from (and every year new introductions are made) that it is very difficult to do more than mention a few that have given good results in my garden, or that I have seen do particu- -larly well in the gardens of friends, and clients.

Here then is a short list of good bedding sorts: Betty’, Uprichard, a salmon pink with carmine reverse; Blue* Moon, a soft lilac; Fragrant Cloud, a coral red; Grand- ‘- mere Jenny, yellow flushed pink; Josephine Bruce, a velvety crimson, scented; McGredy’s Yellow, a primrose yellow; Mrs Sam McGredy, a coppery orange scented; Papa Meilland, scented rich velvety crimson; Peace, a large yellow with a flush of pink; Speks Yellow, robust yellow; Super Star, bright vermilion; Wendy Cussons, deep cerise; Isabel Orty, deep pink with silvery reverse, fragrant; Paxali, a full white, long stems. 1

The following rambler roses may be considered as easy to grow under most conditions: American Pillar, single rose pink, white eye; Albertine, reddish salmon beds, scented; Alberic Barbier, creamy white, shaded yellow; Crimson Shower, semi-double crimson; Emily Greig, yellow blooms with coppery foliage; Etain, sweet scented salmon pink; Minnehaha, a shell pink; Excelsa, a bright scarlet.

Recurrent Flowering Climbers

A newish type of climbing rose producing an abundance of colour. Altissimo, deep red flushed crimson, dark green foliage; Casino, a soft yellow; Coral Dawn, coral pink; Danse de Feu, orange red; Handel, deep carmine pink, ivory base; Pink Perpetue, double rich carmine pink; School Girl, a soft salmon; Swan Lake, a lovely white; and Mermaid, a sulphur yellow with glossy foliage (dislikes hard pruning).

Climbing Sports

These climbing roses are suitable for walls or pergola posts. They only require moderate pruning. They like overhead spraying with clean water on hot summer days. Climbing Allgold, a yellow; Climbing Ena Harkness, a scented crimson scarlet; Climbing Iceberg, a pure white; Climbing Orangeade, a lovely orange; Climbing The Doctor, a bright pink; Climbing Crimson Glory, a scented crimson; and Climbing Masquerade, a yellow, pink and scarlet.


Those who live in towns and cities will be well advised not to grow T.’s, for they are useless in smokey areas. Even the more moderate growing Hybrid T.’s suffer badly as do the Pernetianas. As smokiness usually brings about soil acidity the rose bed should certainly be given dressings of hydrated lime, say at 140 to 175 g/m2 (4 to 5 oz per sq yd) each year.

These roses should never be grown too close to walls or fences or even near to dense hedges. It is always important in a town garden to have the rose beds in a spot where there is (1) good circulation of air, and (2) plenty of sunshine.

Don’t grow varieties that are very susceptible to Mildew. Don’t grow the delicate shades, cream, lemon or ivory. Do syringe the bushes over at least once a week in the evening, using clean water, preferably rain water. This keeps the leaves free from smuts.

The following varieties do well under town and city con-ditions both in the north and south: Hybrid Musks – Penelope, Bonn.

Dwarf Polyanthas – all.

Rugosas – Grootendoorst, Scabrosa.

Hybrid Wichurianas (Climbers) – Excelsa, Chaplain’s Pink, Easlea’s Golden Rambler, Emily Gray.

Climbing Sports – Crimson Glory; The Doctor.

Hybrid Bourbons – Zephyrine Drouhin, Kathleen Har-rop.

H.T.’s – Fragrant Cloud, Mrs Sam McGredy, Peace, Super Star, Josephine Bruce, Ernest H. Morse, Colour Wonder, Mischief, and Wendy Cursons.


Ramblers are not really suited for training against walls because (1) they cannot stand the great heat given off by walls in the summer, and (2) they have to be cut down each year, and so it means a tremendous amount of cutting out of old wood and tying in of new – which is a nuisance.

Plant any of the following climbers which will give little trouble and which will spread themselves over the wall con-cerned quite quickly.

Climbing Allgold, a yellow Climbing Madame Butterfly, a pink, apricot and gold; Climbing Edouard Heriot, a coral red; Climbing Etoile d’ Hollande, a dark crimson; Climbing Ena Harkness, a crimson; and Climbing Iceberg, a white.

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.