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Gardening Carolina

Appalachian Mountains,Piedmont and the Coastal areas.

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Noisette Roses

Even though the name is French, there is no other class of roses more American than the Noisettes. The first of this class, ‘Champneys Pink Cluster’ was either bred or resulted from a natural cross between “Old Blush’ (a China Rose, Rosa chinesis) and the European Musk Rose (Rose moschata). This entirely novel class of roses was born in Charleston, SC in the late 18th century in the gardens of Mr. John Champneys. The importance of this development to rose culture cannot be underestimated. ‘Champneys Pink Cluster’ was the first continually flowering rose in the western world. Its genes have been passed on to hundreds, if not thousands of roses bred in the generations since.

Mr. Champneys lacked either the desire or wherewithal to develop and distribute his new rose. History is a bit murky on this point. He gave several cuttings of the plant to his neighbor, Phillipe Noisette, a French botanist living in Charleston. (Noisette may have provided Champneys with the parent plants from which he bred his new rose. Again, there is some murky history going on.) Mr. Noisette shipped samples of the new rose to France for evaluation and propagation. The roses took Europe by storm during the 19th century. Hundreds of new varieties were bred and later crossed with the classic French Tea Roses.

Ironically, the Noisette roses were much more popular in Europe than America during their heyday. Even today, they are not one of the more popular classes of roses among gardeners. They should be. They are hardy throughout North & South Carolina, long lived, vigorous, healthy, disease resistant and beautiful. Only a few dozen known Noisettes survive today. Quite a few more have been found growing in old cemeteries or around old homesites. Many of these have been reintroduced to commerce and are enjoying a bit of a revival.

Most of the Noisettes feature “old fashioned” blooms in shades of pink, buff, white and cream. They can be grown as medium to large shrubs and some grow quite well as climbers. Once established, they need little care or attention and will thrive for decades. The Tea-Noisette hybrids broaden the color range and bloom forms of the true Noisettes to include yellows, deeper pinks and apricot. However, they are a bit more tender. Nonetheless, they can be grown in almost any Carolina garden without worry.

I grow several Noisettes in my Winston-Salem, NC garden. They are among the toughest, most vigorous roses I grow. They are extremely disease resistant and flower from April to December. If you are interested in learning more about Noisettes, I highly recommend reading “Noisette Roses, 19th Century Charleston’s Gift to the World” edited by Virginia Keen. It can be purchased, along with other fine resources on historic roses through the Heritage

Rose Foundation http://www.heritagerosefoundation.org
The following are but a few selections from the class.

The Noisettes

Cold Hardiness: USDA Zones 6-10
AHS Heat Zones: 6-10
Soil: well drained, sandy loam to clay loam
Sun: at least 4-6 hours daily, preferably more (6-10)
Size: from 4-8 feet wide x 4-10 feet tall (except climbing
varieties which can reach well more than 12 feet)
Propagation: root division, soft wood, semi-hardwood and hardwood cuttings.
Bloom: 1-3 inches wide, blush, pink, deep pink, white and cream, generally occurring in clusters, repeating consistently throughout the growing season, often very fragrant.

Champneys’ Pink Cluster
Champneys
ARS Rating 8.5
light pink, double blossoms borne in clusters on a large, vigorous climber reaching up to 18 feet tall, moderate sweet fragrance.

Nastarana
Rose Natchitoches

ARS Rating 8.6
cream to white with blush pink shading, featuring a prominent boss of center yellow stamens, semi double blooms borne in clusters on a spreading shrub reaching 6 feet tall and 8 feet
wide, very fragrant.

Natchitoches Noisette
Natchitoches

*not yet evaluated by the ARS rose pink, double blooms borne in clusters on a tall shrub measuring 6 feet wide and 6-8 feet tall, moderately fragrant

Aimee Vibert
Rose Aimee
ARS Rating 8.2
porcelain white, very double blooms borne in large clusters on a spreading shrub measuring up to 10 feet wide and 8-14 feet tall, moderate musk rose fragrance.

Fellemberg
Fellemberg
*currently under ARS evaluation deep cherry pink with white petal bases, double blooms borne in large clusters on a vigorous shrub 4 feet wide and 6-10 feet tall, strong fragrance reported to be akin to that of sweetpeas.

Mary Washington
Mary Washington
*currently under ARS evaluation cream white blushed with pink, very double blooms borne in large clusters on stiff canes, spreading habit, 4 feet wide and 6 feet
tall, very fragrant.

The Tea-Noisettes

Cold Hardiness: USDA Zones 6b-10
AHS Heat Zones: 6-10
Soil: well drained, sandy loam to clay loam
Sun: at least 4-6 hours daily, preferably more (6-10)
Size: from 4-8 feet wide x 4-10 feet tall (except climbing
varieties which can reach well more than 12 feet)
Propagation: root division, soft wood, semi-hardwood and hardwood cuttings Bloom Colors: 2-4 inches wide, blush, pink, deep pink, white, cream, yellow, gold and apricot,.generally occurring in well spaced small clusters in flushes during the growing season, often very fragrant.

Lamarque
Lamarque

ARS Rating 8.7
creamy white with yellow undertones aging to white, very full, double blooms borne in clusters on a sprawling shrub measuring 6- 12 feet wide and 8-16 feet tall, strong tea rose fragrance Crepuscule (translates to “Twilight” in English) ARS Rating 8.2
blushed apricot to yellow/gold blooms, fully double borne in small clusters on a climbing shrub 4-10 feet wide and 6-12 feet tall, strong sweet fragrance.

Jaune Desprez
Jaune Desprez

ARS Rating 8.1 blush copper yellow, aging to creamy white, very full blooms occurring repeatedly in clusters, a rampant climber reaching 10- 14 feet wide and 12-20 feet tall, very fragrant.

Deschamps

Deschamps
*not yet rated by the ARS
deep pink blooms, very double, occurring in clusters on a large shrub 4-6 feet wide and 6-10 feet tall, fragrant.

Reve D’Or (“Dream of Gold”)
Reve D' Or

ARS Rating 9.2
deep yellow, copper shaded blooms, very full, occurring inclusters on a sprawling climber reaching 6-8 feet wide and 10-18 feet tall, moderate tea rose fragrance.

Lynn Cochran Master Gardener Volunteer and member of American Rose Society.
Forsyth County North Carolina.Lynn Cochran

 

 



 

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