Gertrude Stein once famously wrote, “A rose is a rose is a rose…” but if you’re a gardener, you know that’s not true. Fossil evidence suggests that the rose is about 35 million years old, and that today, there are well over 30,000 varieties of rose world wide. You can sort your way through tea, wild, moss, cabbage, Damask, Perpetual, Gallica, Noisette, Virginia, Portland, China, California, odorata, floribunda, centifolia, grandiflora, polyantha — or even a dreaded multiflora — roses, and still not have seen them all. So for simplicity’s sake, let’s look at the roses we carry here at Rolling Green Nursery, and why we’ve chosen them.
These layers of roses let you grow them at foot, waist, and eye level throughout the growing season.
- Shrub roses reach 3-5 feet tall roughly, and stay in a somewhat mounded, upright form.
- Climbing roses can tendril several feet into the air supported by anything tall and sturdy, and they often feature large, showy flowers.
- Rambling roses also climb, but can take on a more briar or thicket style, and often showcase smaller, daintier flowers.
- Drift roses act as ground covers, and only reach about 2 feet tall.
- Beach roses, or Rosa Rugosas, are well adapted to coastal environments, and excel in sandy, sunny conditions.
Popular Rose Collections We Carry
David Austin Roses: For 60 years, Austin has been breeding hybrid roses in Shropshire, England, and has created more than 200 varieties, renown for their beauty, and offering a wide range of colors and perfumes. Every year he introduces a few more new varieties onto the market which are eagerly awaited by English Rose fans. He calls his collection “English roses,” and they have been carefully bred for vigor, fragrance, repeat flowering, disease resistance, and a special charm. We currently have the Charlotte, Lady Gardener, Imogen, Mary Rose, and Teasing Georgia varieties of this collection.
The Double Knockout Family of Roses started in 2000, a second generation of roses first started 20 years ago. They are prized for the most “flower power” and the longest bloom season — starting in early spring and going up until the first frost, pairing nicely with Hydrangeas, also known for long bloom seasons. They are disease resistant, easy to grow, very winter hardy, receiving of various soil types, and better resistance to black spot and other diseases. Plus, the boast big, double blooms.
Proven Winner’s Oso Easy Roses have also been bred for easy care, disease resistance, and bright, fun colors. They are particularly proud of a new hybrid tea rose called ‘At Last,’ that has beautiful pink-orange color, handsome shiny foliage, and a wonderful fragrance. Great in beds or containers.
Easy Elegance and First Editions Collections from Bailey Nurseries are bred to be easy-care. Easy Elegance roses come in 24 colors, and have the eye-catching beauty of hybrid tea roses with the low maintenance of shrub roses, offering the best of both worlds. We currently offer All the Rage, Yellow Brick Road, Miracle on the Hudson, Snowdrift, and Julia Child varieties of this collection. First Editions, like the gorgeous ‘Above and Beyond’ climbing rose or ‘Lotty’s Love’ rosa rugosa, are new varieties coming onto the market.
Drift Roses are a cross between full-size groundcover roses and miniature roses. From the former they kept toughness, disease resistance and winter hardiness, but inherited their well-managed, mounding size and repeat-blooming nature from the miniatures. The low, manageable habit of Drift Roses makes them perfect for small gardens, for planters, or for mass commercial plantings. They brighten up borders, fill in empty spaces, meander around established plants, and can control erosion on hillsides and slopes. We currently carry Apricot, Peach, Red, and Sweet varieties from this collection.
The Pavement Series of Rosa Rugosas are beach roses that are well adapted to sunny, sandy, arid conditions, and salt sprays.
We carry the Pavement Series, first introduced in the 1980s by Bailey Nurseries, which took the Japanese Rosa Rugosa, and bred it to be
smaller, more compact, and with less suckering and spreading, better winter hardiness, and excellent disease resistance. We currently have Lotty’s Love, Frau Dagmar Hartopp, Snow, Dwarf, and Foxy varieties of the Pavement series. Pollinators are huge fans of all roses, but seem to flock to these rugosas in particular.
So as you can see, there is an extensive variety of roses to choose from. And we hope we’ve selected some of the best options for you in color, habit, and vigor. Come on by to shop the collections and see them in person. And remember: A rose is not just a rose is not just a rose.