Thursday, April 23, 2015

that old stud

This rose was given to my by a friend, who received it herself from her great aunt in Louisiana. I've since identified it as 'Old Blush', one of the original stud roses brought back from China in the late 1700's by the Empress Josephine Bonaparte, who was obsessed with roses. It's a stud rose, because it became one of the parents of modern reblooming roses. Before these roses, the European roses only bloomed in one flush in the late spring.

 The flowers don't have a very elegant form (but certainly no worse than 'Knockout') and although they do have a fragrance, it is very slight to my nose. People describe it as smelling like sweet peas, as good a description as any.

This is the third year in the ground for me, and it has grown rapidly, or at least rapidly for this tough climate. I'm told that in Louisiana, it might be eating the house by now.

Here it is in April 2013, languishing in a pot. 

 By September 2013, it had grown quite a bit.
In May 2014.
 Then in August 2014.

And now.

 Flowers start out a light pink, then darken as they age, with exposure to sunlight.

 The bush as a whole, has varying shades of color. Not a rose without its faults, but overall, very satisfying.

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