Coming Up Roses
Every year, new rose varieties hit the garden centres.
You can expect different colours, scents, growth habits, and disease resistance to add to your rose garden this winter, but which one(s) will you choose?
Words: Graham Ross. Images: Gary Matuschka
There’s no denying that we’re pretty lucky in Australia, but especially when it comes to roses. We reap the benefits of international rose breeding, with only the best arriving on our shores, often after significant overseas trials. Once here, they go through extensive local testing at National Rose Trial Garden in Adelaide, before only the best varieties are released into garden centres.
Pick of the bunch
Of the dozen new releases on Treloar’s list, ‘Roald Dahl’, an English Rose creation from David Austin, caught my eye. It was awarded a Silver Medal, Irwin Award for Health, and the Most Pest and Disease Resistant Rose at the 2020 National Rose Trial Garden Australia Awards. Robust, floral tea scented blooms appear profusely on a vigorous, well-rounded, bushy shrub. It grows 1m tall and wide, with few thorns and even tolerates some shade – a lovely bonus in smaller gardens.
For gardeners looking for a vigorous climber, Rosa ‘Bathsheba’ is the perfect candidate. It produces apricot-yellow buds that open to soft yellow, shallow-cupped blooms with a superb floral myrrh fragrance, with hints of honey and Tea. A short but vigorous bush – up to 3m spread – ideal for pillars, arches or obelisks with a 3m spread.
I will never forget walking into the RHS Chelsea Flower Show display of David Austin Roses and being attracted to one single rose scent, cutting through the thousands on display. It was Rosa ‘Olivia Rose Austin’, with David Austin Snr declaring to me privately, “This is my finest release ever.” I guess naming a rose variety after your granddaughter, David Jnr’s daughter, added some pressure. Released in Australia in 2019, it has since won numerous prestigious accolades, including the Gold Medal in October 2020, Australia’s Rose of the Year, Marion de Boehme memorial Award, Best Rose of Trial, and the Gerald Meylan Perpetual Trophy’s Best Shrub or Ground Cover Rose in the Trial. Its soft pink, beautifully cupped rosettes on a strong bush with lustrous, dark-green foliage is a sure winner in any garden. Plus, it only grows to 1.2m.
‘Olivia Rose Austin’.
Rosa ‘Cherry Bomb’, a Floribunda release from Kordes’ Roses in Germany. An unusual bicoloured rose with very double blooms of red with a silver reverse to each petal. Of compact habit, 1x 1m, healthy strong growth, excellent for hedging en masse or pot culture in smaller gardens or balcony.
For a glorious intoxicating fragrance, choose Rosa ‘Delightful Parfuma’, another Kordes’ Roses Floribunda release from Germany. Blooms are big – up to 10cm (4”) across – and are coloured deep mauve-pink with a pale-pink reverse. It is upright to 1m, producing both single and multi-headed bunches of flowers ideal for cutting vase display.
Treloar Roses have listed their latest selections on their new website catalogue. Plants shipped nationwide until late August. Visit www.treloars.com.au or call 1300 044 852.