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.
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.
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.
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.
A really reliable climber which is always healthy and easy to propagate is the well known ‘New Dawn’ . It has lovely soft pink flowers.
‘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.
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.
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.
The last one ‘Paul’s Himalayan Musk’ comes with a health warning, given chance it will take over the whole garden.
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.