‘Of all the flowers methinks a rose is best’. Shakespeare.

And who am I to argue with Shakespeare? My garden has roses everywhere, I have lost count of how many there are. They are my passion. Throughout the month of June their fragrance pervades the whole garden. And of course each year there are new ones. This year I thought I had better acquire ‘Chloris’ as that is what I adopted as my nom de plume in an effort to remain anonymous which has proved to be futile. My cover is blown and now quite a few friends call me Chloris. I don’t mind as Chloris is another name for Flora, the goddess of flowers. I am happy to be a goddess. And the rose is very pretty, it is an alba and so has healthy foliage, it is also relatively thornless which is useful.

Rosa ‘Chloris’

Another rose which is personal to me is the climber, ‘Drinkstone Apricot’, I am pleased to have this as it was born in my previous garden although it predates me. I am grateful to Anne of Suffolk Plant Heritage for propagating it. It is a pretty, single flower. This one isn’t the best, it is a bit damaged, but it is the only one out at the moment.

Rosa ‘Drinkstone Apricot’

But I have roses grown from seed too. You always get surprises. Here are a couple of ramblers which I grew. The first one is a child of ‘Kiftsgate’ and has reached the top of the holly tree.

This next one is a bit more demure and grows quite slowly. I’m not quite sure of its parentage.

This year a seedling of ‘Treasure Trove’ bloomed for the first time and I am delighted with it. It will grow too big for the bamboo canes which support it now so I will have to rethink its position. It has lovely long golden stamens. And it is my favourite of all my rose babies and the only one which gets a name. I shall call her after my daughter because the stamens remind me of her golden hair.

Here is its mother, ‘Treasure Trove’ covering an old apple tree. It is a seedling of ‘Kiftsgate’ so it has its eye on all the surrounding trees.

Rosa ‘Treasure Trove’

Amongst my climbers, I love the blowsy apricot heads of ‘Lady Hillingdon’, although she does seem incapable of holding them up. The colour looks as if they have been dipped in tea, but perhaps as she lolls about so it is something stronger. But I mustn’t malign her namesake, Alice, Lady Hillingdon. The famous words about closing her eyes and thinking of England whilst suffering unwelcome attention from her husband came from her journal of 1912. So I’m sure she was too prim to take anything stronger than tea.

Rosa ‘Lady Hillingdon’

A really reliable climber which is always healthy and easy to propagate is the well known ‘New Dawn’ . It has lovely soft pink flowers.

Rosa ‘New Dawn’

‘Zépherine Drouhin’ is an early flowering Bourbon climber. She is over now but she is worth a mention because she has beautiful, very fragrant flowers and she is thornless which is always a bonus.

Rosa ‘Zépherine Drouhin’

I love single flowers and the large, pure white flowers and healthy green foliage of Rosa laevigata ‘Cooperi’ are wonderful. This rose needs a sunny south facing site and lots of room. The only drawback is, unlike ‘Zépherine Drouhin’ she has vicious thorns.

Rosa laevigata ‘Cooperi’

Climbers are very useful for climbing up walls and over arches but I love ramblers which I can toss into trees for a big impact. It is difficult to pick favourites, but here are a few.

Rosa ‘Albertine’
‘Rosa ‘Veilchenblau’
Rosa ‘Felicité Perpetué’
Rosa ‘Francis E. Lester’
Rosa ‘Bleu Magenta’
Rosa ‘Goldfinch’
Rosa ‘Teasing Georgia’
Rosa ‘Maline de Dentelles’
Rosa ‘Ghislaine de Féligonde’
Rosa ‘Phyllis Bide’

The last one ‘Paul’s Himalayan Musk’ comes with a health warning, given chance it will take over the whole garden.

Rosa ‘Paul’s Himalayan Musk’

I’m sure you are getting rose indigestion and I haven’t even started on my shrub roses. I love old fashioned roses best but like everyone else I have fallen for David Austin’s English rose. My whole front garden is given over to roses.

But I must stop now, I will save some more roses for another day. I will just finish with a few more photos.

Rosa ‘Sally Holmes’
Rosa ‘Mill on The Floss’
Rosa ‘Grace’
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14 Responses to ‘Of all the flowers methinks a rose is best’. Shakespeare.

  1. Jo Shafer says:

    Your pictures recall to my mind my childhood gardens in the South. Mother generally followed Gertrude Jekyll’s design philosophy, and that’s mine, too. Is that how you’ve designed your own gardens? Looks like it.

  2. Amanda Clowe says:

    My knowledge – and love of roses was founded on seeing your beautiful collection. I’m very grateful to you for introducing the single roses to me as well …
    My favourites in your garden are Grace, Phyllis Bide and Cooperei – although I love them all !!

  3. Eliza Waters says:

    Gorgeous rose collection, Liz, I mean, ‘Chloris.’ 😉 Your posts always leave me speechless, I don’t know how you get so many plants/flowers into your plot!

  4. Kris P says:

    I love Rosa ‘Chloris’! In fact, I love roses in general but I’m afraid they don’t much care for my excessively dry garden, or my failure to feed them but once in a blue moon.

  5. Pauline says:

    Love your namesake, very pretty! Wow, you have so many climbing and rambling roses, how do you remember all their names! I’m still waiting for my ramblers up trees to flower, but I don’t have anywhere near the number you have!

  6. susurrus says:

    You have a wonderful collection. Your namesake is new to me and it was interesting to read about your seedlings. White shrub roses are uncommon, so if you get a really good one, you might have a winner on your hands.

  7. A sight for sore eyes and such wonderful names!

  8. Heyjude says:

    You certainly do have a love of roses – what a beautiful collection – my favourites are those open ones and your newly named one is gorgeous.
    PS I actually thought your name was Chloris!

  9. Just wow. What an incredible selection. Of course I love all the single whites best. Now I must ask, can you offer any guidance for transplanting a climbing rose, still a very modest size. Or am I mad to think of such a thing? This is for a wild rose, R. setigera.

  10. Anna says:

    I didn’t know you had your very own rose Chloris 😂 It’s a beauty. I’m most envious of your veritable treasure trove and can only begin to imagine the scent that must float through the air on a summer day. Shakespeare had quite a lot to say on the subject of roses didn’t he?

  11. tonytomeo says:

    Shakespeare is why my name is so difficult to pronounce. Romeo is not pronounced as ‘ROWmeeo’. It is pronounced as ‘rowMAYo’. People actually argue with me about it, as if a deceased English guy knows more about Italian names than I do. I suspect that Shakespeare actually pronounced it properly, but that the pronunciation has been ruined over the years.

  12. Cathy says:

    Your whole garden is a treasure trove, and roses are one of the most valuable gems in it, Chloris. How clever to have so many trees to grow roses up into to extend your boundaries vertically! I ended up writing a list so I could count how many roses I have ((only a fraction of yours) – and now I can fall asleep at night trying to remember them all!

  13. snowbird says:

    Oh my!!! What a feast for the eyes and the soul. I am lost for words, so many beauties, I love the climbers and ramblers, and Chloris, you are indeed the Goddess of flowers and all growing creatures, also love your daughter’s rose, just gorgeous.xxx

  14. Cathy says:

    I am at a loss for words Chloris. Absolutely gorgeous. And having your own rose is quite amazing. 😃

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