Last month was of course Valentine’s Day, the one day of the year that florists are run off their feet with orders and of course many flowers change hands. Red is still the most popular colour for roses but other colours such as white and yellow are also given. But nothing says ‘I love you’ more than a red rose.
Red is also very popular with garden roses and there are many good red garden roses around. However, it is also one of the harder colours to breed and especially to combine fragrance with for a true red rose. You get lots of pink-reds and orange reds with a strong scent.
Here are some good red roses to grow in any garden:
Crimson Bouquet: Super healthy, vibrant red blooms. Little scent but otherwise one of the best red roses to come out in recent times.
Christchurch Remembers: Named to honour the 185 fatalities in the 2011 Christchurch earthquakes, the crimson red blooms darken around the edges as they age. Medium growing with good health.
Lasting Love: If you are after a fragrant red rose, this is it! The cherry red blooms are highly scented. Very healthy with super shiny foliage. Medium growing. Also check out Red Flame which is a climbing form of this variety
L.D. Braithwaite: Still one of the best Austin varieties and a good all-round performer. Not the most fragrant of the Austin varieties but lasts ok as a cut flower and makes a great display in the garden
Love Heart: A good name for this variety, the smallish blooms are good for picking and are a vibrant red in colour. Medium to tall growing with few thorns.
Loving Memory: A popular variety with large double blooms of cherry red. Little scent but has been a consistent performer for the last 30 odd years. Great for picking.
Opulance: The dark red-black blooms cover the low to medium growing spreading plant. Good health but little scent.
Patio Jewel: A Patio rose with well-formed blooms of bright crimson red. Very free flowering on a medium growing plant. Great as a short standard.
Phantom: A shrub rose with arching, spreading grower with semi-double blooms of bright scarlet opening to reveal golden yellow stamens. Great as a weeping standard.
Roma: A newer variety with masses of small well-formed blooms of rich red well-formed blooms. A medium, bushy variety with glossy green foliage.
Trumpeter: A popular older variety with masses of scarlet red blooms on a low growing, compact bush. Great plant en masse.
In the Rose Garden for March
- Water, water water if it is dry.
- Don’t apply any more applications of fertiliser and by the end of the month, cease deheading of your roses.
- Prepare new areas for roses by digging over soil and adding compost
- Order roses for winter. The new and popular varieties often sell out early along with those grown as standards.
By Hayden Foulds
Hayden also serves as Deputy Chairman of the World Federation of Rose Societies Rose Trials Committee amongst other rose endeavours.