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Disease Resistant Roses for the Cutting Garden

Roses are a mainstay in floral designs. We can enjoy cut roses from our gardens throughout the growing season. With so many varieties of roses from which we can choose, it is sometimes difficult to choose. What I generally try to do is select those known to have at least some disease resistance. They will remain healthy and require less spraying than the others.

Aside from that I simply go by flower colors. The pinks tend to be my favorites.

Of the tea roses, give consideration to Paris D’ Yves St. Laurent. It was amed for the designer in honor of the tenth anniversary of his fragrance. The intense carmine pink blooms have a stimulating spicy fragrance. The foliage is deep glossy green. The very vigorous plants are highly disease resistant. Its stems are a wonderful addition to any bouquet.

Severeal other hybrid teas have very good resistance as well. Karen Blixen has appealing, mild, fruity scented white blooms 5 ½ inches across. Especially full, each blossom has lots of petals, 55-75. A very hardy, well-branched plant, Karen Blixen’s foliage is dark, glossy green with a leathery texture.

Of the floribundas, both the George Burns and Gracie Allen have good disease resistance. The moderately fruity-scented blooms of George Burns are striped with rich tones of red, yellow, cream, and pink. The rounded upright plants are compact. Foliage is deep, glossy green.

Gracie Allen’s blossoms are apple-scented, 3 inches wide with outer white pearl petals and pink tinging in the center forming a heart. Foliage is a handsome dark green.

Several of the shrub roses are worth attention, including the Cherry Meidiland, a member of the Meidiland landscape rose series. I’ve been pleased with all the other Meidiland series thus far, and this one should be no exception. Cherry Meidiland grows upright, reaching four feet in height. Its spritely single blossoms are bright cherry red with white centers. Like all the Meidilands, this is an excellent plant. It is resistant to drought, insect, and disease, and is noted for its hardiness.

Also very disease resistant is an old-fashioned shrub rose, Countess Celeste. It has apple-scented blooms, clear coral with cream tinges on the reverse. The old-fashioned blossoms are very double with more than 35 petals.

Among the climbing roses are several disease resistant ones. Cl. Shadow Dancer has ruffled, double blossoms with a light scent. The cherry red blooms, three inches across, are tinged with pink. A repeat bloomer, flowers are in clusters. They have 15-25 petals. The canes can be six to eight feet long with glossy dark green foliage.

Cl. Berries ‘n’ Cream, another repeat bloomer, has a light apple scent. The bicolor, full ruffled blooms are deep-rose with cream tinges. These are three inches wide with 20 or so petals.

Jeepers Creepers is a shrub rose that is sometimes used as a ground cover. It is about two feet tall and twice as wide. The single snow white blossoms have a gold heart or center.

Baby Blanket is an ever-blooming shrub rose that is also used as a ground cover. It is three feet in height with a five foot spread. Plants are covered with light pink blooms.

Ralph’s Creeper has bicolor red and yellow blossoms with an apple fragrance.

Red Ribbons is a repeat bloomer with single. Brilliant red flowers.

Both Ralph’s Creeper and Red Ribbon are about 2 ½ feet in height and twice as wide.


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