PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

Garden

April 21, 2011

Micah Meyer: Roses

PORT ARTHUR — Roses are a plant that I was never really interested in until I started working for the Extension Service and received exposure to them.  I had always thought of them as a high maintenance plant that required too much dedication to look good.  However, that’s not the case with many roses and if you select the right rose and plant it in a good location then you can experience one of the most beautiful landscape plants around.

Here are a few of my favorite roses that I have either grown or have observed over the past few years.  Perhaps the most popular rose today is the ‘Knockout’rose.  The original Knockout was a single petal red rose that blooms from spring until frost.  It has superior disease resistance and makes a great accent plant or itcan be used in a hedge.  The Knockout series of roses come in many colors and some of them are double petals.  This is one of the easies roses to care for.

‘Belinda’s Dream’is a fairly popular rose in Texas.  It was one of the first roses to receive Texas Super Star designation and Earth Kind status.  It makes a gorgeouspink bloom with a terrific fragrance.  It blooms heavily in the spring and then in flushes during the summer.  It has high tolerance to black spotand is a fantastic rose for the landscape.  This rose is also suitable for cutting and using in flower arrangements.

‘Carefree Beauty’is another Earth Kind rose.  It is sometimes known as Katy Road Pink.  This is a large rose that has a tremendous spring and fall bloom cycle with smaller flushes of bloom during the summer.  This plant will set a lot of rose hips that are ornamental or you could make rose hip jelly with them if you were so inclined.

The  ‘Peggy Martin’ rose is a climber that is nearly thornlessand a vigorous grower.  Give it plenty of room to grow and in a few years it will be one of the highlights of your rose garden.  Its main bloom is in the spring, but it will give sporadic blooming in the fall after it gets established.  Use it on a trellis or a large fence for a great show.

‘Duchesse de Brabant’might be my favorite rose.  It is an old rose with very fragrant pink, cupped blooms.  This rose blooms nearly all season and the fragrance is fantastic.  This rose is also an Earth Kind rose and is said to have been Teddy Roosevelt’s favorite rose.

‘Grandma’s Yellow’ rose is steadilygaining in popularity across the state.  The blooms open a dark yellow and gradually fade to a pale yellow. The long pointed buds and freshly opening flowers work great in flower arrangements. This rose is disease tolerant, but can be attacked by black spot during wet periods mainly in the spring and fall.  There has been talk of this rose being named the official yellow rose of Texas.

Some of these roses are available locally and others you might have to mail order.  I’ve used Chamblee’s Nursery in Tyler Texas and the Antique Rose Emporium in Independence Texas for mail order roses in the past and had good luck.

Micah Meyer is county extension agent-horticulture of the Texas AgriLife Extension Service in Jefferson County. He can be reached at 409-835-8461 or cmmeyer@ag.tamu.edu.

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