Je vous present...

This rose was listed in my notes as 2008-27, an open-pollinated seedling of 'La Belle Sultane.' I've always loved LBS because along with a very few other decidedly magenta roses, it has a very powerful blue component that I can see but not satisfactorily describe or photograph. Well, this seedling has it in spades!

Altogether this is an absolutely wonderful little rose. Good fragrance (so far as I can tell, I can barely smell anything anymore), deep, rich color, nice size and all this on a compact, round bush just covered with flowers. It will be interesting to see how this plant matures.

One oddity I have noticed about this flower: unlike its parent (and just about all the other gallicas I know), it closes its petals at dusk, like a wild rose.

And So It Begins...

The first rose of summer has finally bloomed! Good old R. w. ultramontana!

No postings over the winter as my day job and Real Life kept getting the way. It wasn't a great year for new seedlings, though I did get the two crosses I'd been meaning to get, and in abundance: "Fa's Marbled Moss" x 'Song of the Stars' and "Fa's Marbled Moss" x "Marbree." I'm trying to find out if, as I suspect, the two forms of spotting are indeed quite different, and if so, how a rose with both types would look. Keep your fingers crossed.

The new seedlings sprouted in November and as is my usual practice, at five months old they were planted in the garden. Then there is a two-month sulk in which they lose all their leaves and grumble a lot, but now they are all growing back strongly.

The 2008 seedlings, of which I have about 30 surviving and are almost all open pollinated, are growing with a vengeance. I hope to devote a day each to them once they are in bloom. I've noticed that anything with "Fa's Marbled Moss" or one of the old gallicas as a parent have buds, but those with an Alba as a parent, while growing very well, have no sign of buds.

This winter was unusually wet--in fact, I heard we got at least two normal winters worth of snow. It was also quite mild, so I though the roses might be early this year. Instead, they began leafing out quite late; and for the first time ever, I have found slugs in the garden, both the usual ground slug and rose slugs!! Where have these things been for the last 16 years? Well, they're here now.

And my multifloras all died down to the ground. 'Veilchenblau' and 'Bleu Magenta' as well as the two species plants I have all just turned black, and I can see no immediate reason for it. We had no exceptional cold this year and in years like this they normally do fine.

Well, here's waiting on the babies to bloom! Something to look forward to at last!

More Roselings

So far I have ten seedlings of the "Fa's Marbled Moss" x 'Song of the Stars' cross, all from one hip which contained 24 seeds. Today the first seedling of any of the other crosses I've made has come up. This is a cross of a local wild rose, R. woodsii ultramontana, and the found rose "Fort Pella Purple."

The latter, FPP in my records, is a very interesting rose. When left on its own it is a large shrub or small climber, and when cared for well it climbs with abandon. It roots if you blink at it. Flowers are small, very strongly magenta with a definite blue glow to my eyes, with about 20 petals. There are almost no thorns, and no sign of multiflora in its background. Unfortunately, all attempts to get it to set hips have failed. I've never gotten any in the garden, and the wild plant from which my plant came has never had a hip on it.

I made several crosses this year, using it as a pollen parent. No matter what I crossed it with, I only got two or three seeds per hip. This particular hip had only two seeds in it, so I was really happy to see this seedling pop up.

The rest of the seedlings are all happy and growing on well. Two of them are already in gallon pots, having grown roots out the bottoms of 5 inch deep cups before making their first five-leaflet leaves. I have very high hopes for this cross.

First 2009 Seedling sprouts!

The first of the 800+ seeds in the greenhouse sprouted today. This one is Fa's Marbled Moss x Song of the Stars. I was particularly eager to get this cross, as these two roses appear to display two different types of spotting. FMM has splotchy spots, irregularly placed, ovoid and with dark centers that are part of the structure of the petal itself. 'Song of the Stars' shows circular, smaller, evenly spaced dots which look as if they are dots in the purple top-layer of the petals only. I hope a great many of the seeds from these hips will sprout, I can't wait to see what I get!

And So It Begins...

It's November, the greenhouse is set up, and after two months in the fridge, the seeds are coming out.  They've spent the last eight weeks in vermiculite in plastic egg cartons.  Now they're being transferred to vermiculite/potting oil filled yogurt cups.  As seeds germinate, the seedlings will be put in individual yogurt cups to grow on.  I don't expect to see any seedlings for at least three weeks, but one never knows.

Seeds in the Fridge!

Fall seems to be coming earlier and earlier here.  Sometime around mid August, the rose hips began to ripen, and immediately fell prey to beetles and rabbits.  Fortunately, the foxes have started coming back so the rabbit population has imploded, but beetles and cold nights convinced me to take the hips in.  So, after a couple of weeks (for most of them) in warm stratification, they are now all in the fridge.

The long list of crosses in my previous updates has narrowed itself down to a rather smaller list of seeds, to wit:

R.w.ultramontana x L83 - 20 seeds.
" x Fort Pella Purple - 2 seeds
" x Dots Enough, 12 seeds
R.w.fendleri x R.foetida persica - 11 seeds
Leda x Dots Enough -- 7 seeds
Fort Pella Mystery Alba x L83 -- one huge seed
" x R. canina -- 10 seeds
" x Camieux  -- 3 huge seeds
Song of the Stars x Dots Enough -- 15 seeds
" x Fa's Marbled Moss -- 64 seeds
Nuits de Young x Dots Enough -- 1 huge seed
" x Fa's Marbled Moss -- 5 seeds
StarryDay x Song of the Stars -- 10 seeds
" x Golden Celebration -- 6 seeds
Fa's Marbled Moss x Song of the Stars -- 60 + seeds
" x Dragon's Blood -- 30 seeds
" x Smoky -- 17 seeds
" x Camieux -- 5 seeds
" x Fort Pella Purple -- 19 seeds
" x Honorine de Brabant -- 26 seeds
" x Sterling Silver -- 37 seeds
" x Gingersnap -- 11 seeds
" x Nuits de Young -- 42 seeds  (42!  Hmmmm....)
" x Purple Tiger -- 39 seeds
" x Rose Gilardi -- 29 large seeds
" x Burgundy Iceberg -- 9 seeds
" x Veilchenblau -- 4 huge seeds
" x Cinco de Mayo -- 42 seeds
" x Morden Fireglow -- 18 seeds
" x R. canina -- 6 seeds
" x Oranges n Lemons -- 5 seeds
" x Baron Giraud de L'Ain -- 21 seeds
Coffee Bean x Song of the Stars -- 13 seeds
Daphne x Fa's Marbled Moss  -- 60 seeds
Distant Drums x Dots Enough -- 18 seeds
Dragon's Blood x Dots Enough -- 27 seeds
" x Fa's Marbled Moss -- 9 seeds
Marbree x Persian Yellow -- 3 huge seeds
Ranuncle x Alain Blanchard -- 7 seeds
Halo Glory x Dragon's Blood -- 8 seeds
Cardinal de Richelieu x Fa's Marbled Moss- 2 huge seeds
Henri Martin x Dragon's Blood -- 5 seeds
" x Coffee Bean -- 4 seeds, two of which were huge
Tuscany Superb x R. w. ultramontana -- 9 seeds
" x R. glauca -- 2 seeds
Golden Celebration x Distant Drums -- 17 seeds
" x Alain Blanchard -- 1 ginormous seed
Veilchenblau x Cinco de Mayo -- 11 seeds
Morden Fireglow x Dots Enough -- 4 huge seeds
" x Fa's Marbled Moss -- 11 seeds
" x Veilchenblau -- 2 seeds in a huge but otherwise empty hip.
Stainless Steel x Veilchenblau -- 6 seeds
Botzaris x Alain Blanchard -- 8 seeds797
Midnight Blue x Veilchenblau -- 58 seeds
Toujours Gai x Tuscany Superb -- 8 seeds
Oranges n Lemons x Cinco de Mayo -- 6 seeds
Paul's Orange Rugosa Hybrid x FMM -- 2 big seeds in a large hip.

Total: over 800...

And there you have it!  Doesn't seem like much, does it?  But if even 1 out of 10 of these seeds sprout, I'll be out of greenhouse room in a hurry!

Wish me luck!

Seeds are in!

Well, it's been a short, weird summer.  It's not even the end of August yet and the roses and cottonwoods are dropping their leaves.

In the last two weeks I've collected, shelled and sorted all the hips that matured, and these are now sitting in vermiculite-filled egg cartons, out in the greenhouse, waiting for September 1, when they'll all go into the fridge. 

A great many of the crosses I tried to make didn't take.  Nothing took on Persian Yellow, which I more or less expected.  Nothing took on Aschermittwoch either, though.  Toujours Gai also turns out to be a disappointing seed parent, with only the cross I made to Tuscany Superb producing a mature hip.  "Fort Pella Purple," which I love because of its strong blue aura, set no hips, but I did get some crosses of it to Fa's Marbled Moss (I crossed FMM with everything, as usual.)

One thing I am looking forward to is the cross of R. woodsii fendleri with Persian Yellow., from which I got 11 seeds. 

I crossed Dots Enough (arkansana) with everything I could find as well, and got a lot of seeds from that quarter.  Used it only as a pollen parent this year, but will be able to use it as a seed parent next year as it is now growing, and happily blooming, in my garden.

Curiously this year, the hips I've gotten typically did not contain very many seeds (except for FMM which had 40-60 each as a rule), but the seeds I did get were lovely and large.  So.......... here's hoping!

Crosses for 2009

Okay, so... hybridising season is over, and propagating season has begun.  Here are the crosses I've made this year.  Some have already died off, but here you go.

aschermittwoch    fa's marbled moss
aschermittwoch    marbree
aschermittwoch    veilchenblau
baron giraud de l'ain    marbree
basye's purple    dots enough
belle organdy    dots enough
botzaris    alain blanchard
burgundy iceberg    dots enough
burgundy iceberg    marbree
burgundy iceberg    r.canina
capt. john ingram    fa's marbled moss
cardinal de richelieu    dots enough
cardinal de richelieu    dragon's blood
cardinal de richelieu    fa's marbled moss
cee dee moss    fort pella purple
chicago peace    dots enough
chicago peace    fa's marbled moss
chicago peace    tuscany superb
cinco de mayo    alain blanchard
cinco de mayo    basye's purple
cinco de mayo    dots enough
cinco de mayo    fa's marbled moss
cinco de mayo    stainless steel
cinco de mayo    veilchenblau
coffee bean    camieux
coffee bean    candy cane
coffee bean    fort pella purple
coffee bean    song of the stars
daphne    fa's marbled moss
distant drums    dots enough
distant drums    fa's marbled moss
distant drums    halo glory
double treat    fa's marbled moss
dragon's blood    fa's marbled moss
dragon's blood    fa's morning stars
dragon's blood    halo glory
dragon's blood    imperatrice farrah
dragon's blood    marbree
dragon's blood    r. glauca
fa's marbled moss    baron giraud de l'ain
fa's marbled moss    burgundy iceberg
fa's marbled moss    camieux
fa's marbled moss    chicago peace
fa's marbled moss    cinco de mayo
fa's marbled moss    dots enough
fa's marbled moss    dragon's blood
fa's marbled moss    fort pella purple
fa's marbled moss    gingersnap
fa's marbled moss    honorine de brabant
fa's marbled moss    L83
fa's marbled moss    morden fireglow
fa's marbled moss    mystery mini
fa's marbled moss    nuits de young
fa's marbled moss    oranges n lemons
fa's marbled moss    paul's crested moss
fa's marbled moss    purple tiqer
fa's marbled moss    r.f.persica
fa's marbled moss    rose gilardi
fa's marbled moss    smoky
fa's marbled moss    song of the stars
fa's marbled moss    sterling silver
fa's marbled moss    tuscan sun
fa's marbled moss    veilchenblau
fa's morning stars    camieux
fa's morning stars    L83
fa's morning stars    r.f.persica
fort pella purple    dots enough
fort pella purple    la belle sultane
fort pella purple    playgold
fort pella purple    r.f.persica
fragrant cloud    fa's marbled moss
fragrant cloud    r.w.ultramontana
freckles    candy cane
freckles    dots enough
freckles    fa's marbled moss
freckles    song of the stars
george burns    camieux
george burns    cee dee moss
george burns    L83
gingersnap    cinco de mayo
gingersnap    dots enough
gingersnap    fa's marbled moss
gingersnap    fort pella purple
gingersnap    r.w.ultramontana
golden buddha    fa's marbled moss
golden celebration    alain blanchard
golden celebration    belle organdy
golden celebration    burgundy iceberg
golden celebration    distant drums
golden celebration    dots enough
golden celebration    r.glauca
golden sunblaze    r.w.ultramontana
halo glory    dots enough
halo glory    dragon's blood
halo glory    fa's morning stars
halo glory    r.canina
henri martin    coffee bean
henri martin    dragon's blood
honorine de brabant    alain blanchard
honorine de brabant    rose gilardi
jon singer    alain blancbard
jon singer    oranges n lemons
jon singer    tuscan sun
jon singer    veilchenblau
kordes perfecta    fa's marbled moss
kordes perfecta    smoky
kordes perfection    fa's marbled moss
la belle sultane    r.w.ultramontana
leda    r.canina
leda    r.multiflora
léda    r.w.ultramontana
maman ichiko    midnight blue
maman ichiko    veilchenblau
marbree    distant drums
marbree    dragon's blood
marbree    r.f.persica
marbree    song of the stars
marbree    tuscan sun
midnight blue    veilchenblau
morden fireglow    basye's purple
morden fireglow    dots enough
morden fireglow    fa's marbled moss
morden fireglow    paul's crested moss
morden fireglow    r.canina
morden fireglow    smoky
morden fireglow    sterling silver
morden fireglow    toujours gai
morden fireglow    veilchenblau
mystery mini    r.glauca
mystery mini    stars n stripes
nuits de young    dots enough
nuits de young    fa's marbled moss
oranges n lemons    alain blancbard
oranges n lemons    basye's purple
oranges n lemons    cinco de mayo
oranges n lemons    r.glauca
oranges n lemons    r.w.ultramontana
oranges n lemons    veilchenblau
paul's orange    fa's marbled moss
purple tiger    dots enough
purple tiger    fa's marbled moss
purple tiger    oranges n lemons
purple tiger    song of the stars
r.f.persica    dots enough
r.f.persica    dragon's blood
r.f.persica    fa's marbled moss
r.f.persica    la belle sultane
r.f.persica    r.canina
r.f.persica    r.glauca
r.f.persica    r.multiflora
r.f.persica    song of the stars
r.glauca    candy cane
r.glauca    sterling silver
r.w.fendleri    dots enough
r.w.fendleri    r.f.persica
r.w.ultramontana    fort pella purple
r.w.ultramontana    L83
ranuncle    alain blanchard
ranuncle    fa's marbled moss
ranuncle    gingersnap
reine des violettes    dots enough
reine des violettes    dragon's blood
reine des violettes    r.f.persica
reine des violettes    r.w.ultramontana
reine des violettes    stainless steel
rose gilardi    dots enough
ruby meilland    aschermittwoch
ruby meilland    candy cane
ruby meilland    dots enough
scarlet mini    fort pella purple
scarlet parade    song of the stars
scentsational    dots enough
scentsational    playgold
smoky    burgundy iceberg
smoky    halo glory
song of the stars    dots enough
song of the stars    fa's marbled moss
song of the stars    fa's morning stars
stainless steel    nuits de young
starry day    dots enough
starry day    golden celebration
starry day    song of the stars
stars n stripes    fa's marbled moss
sterling silver    fara shimbo
tessellations    chicago peace
tessellations    dots enough
tessellations    song of the stars
toujours gai    alain blanchard
toujours gai    basye's purple
toujours gai    burgundy iceberg
toujours gai    cincc de mayo
toujours gai    distant drums
toujours gai    dots enough
toujours gai    midnight blue
toujours gai    morden fireglow
toujours gai    paul's crested moss
toujours gai    purple tiger
toujours gai    purple tiger
toujours gai    smoky
toujours gai    tuscany superb
tradescant    fa's marbled moss
tradescant    song of the stars
tuscan sun    dots enough
tuscan sun    double treat
tuscan sun    fort pella purple
tuscany superb    r.glauca
tyscany superb    r.w.ultramontana
veilchenblau    cincc de mayo
veilchenblau    halo glory


A disappointing year, overall...

Some years everything goes right, and some years you just want to bang your head against walls.

As for the established plants, the year started out really well, and I was looking forward to a long blooming season full of beautiful roses.  Since then, it's been extremely humid here (out here, "humid" generally means anything over 20%, but we've been having East Coast type humidity!) and often quite dark with weeks on end of overcast days.  As a result, everything started quite late and mildew was rife--as were potato beetles!  As if the mildew and beetle damage weren't bad enough, the dark days caused many of the roses which normally bloom a dark pink to be very pale.  "Fa's Marbled Moss" was not particularly effected, but 'Toujours Gai' didn't show any of the mutability it normally does.  Even roses as disparate as 'Ruby Meillandecor' and 'Maman Ichiko' were paler, and neither developed their purple/black haze as they normally do.  'New Dawn,' usually a soft pink, is white this year.

As for seedlings, the 2'Toujours Gai'007 bunch (those which were not eaten by rabbits) had some interest but on looking over them more critically as the season went by, there is only one I think I will keep.  "Fa's Marbled Moss" tends to throw lots of variations on 'Toujours Gai' but I must say, the original is still the best.  'Toujours Gai,' always the late-bloomer in the garden, began after most of the worst weather settled down, and is just a beautiful little shrub.  Even though the flowers weren't as dark as usual this year, they still had their merry, crinkled appearance and fine scent.

So far I've made about 250 crosses for next year.  Many of these have not taken, but the vast majority have. Once I'm done I'll post a list of what I've crossed and what's taken.


First flower from a new rose, and various notes...

After two years of waiting, here is the first flower from a cross of "Fa's Marbled Moss" and 'Marbree.'

As usual with all FMM's offspring, the first flowers are small.  Sometimes they get bigger, and sometimes they don't.  They are never as spotted the first (and sometimes the second) year as they will be once mature, but if there are spots at all on the young plant, there will be spots aplenty later on.

I was hoping I would see 'Marbree'-like spots in this flower, but I don't, at least, not yet.  'Marbree' did warm up the color somewhat, though; this is noticably more "blush" in tone than is FMM, which is pink-leaning-toward-lavender.

There is a slight fragrance and the plant is, so far, pretty disease resistant.  I can't say this for a sibling, a rose which just bloomed this morning and is, in every way, identical to this one except that it's a moss.  Alas, that rose is terribly mildew-prone and now that I can record its color and moss results, will be discarded.  This one, 2007-6, deserves at least another year of watching, I think.

Not a lot of posting recently as I've been either working or out in the garden making various crosses for next year/2011.  I've been trying to think what the goal of my breeding program is, with no luck.  I guess I'd havee better luck if I had an actual breeding program.  As it is, there isn't anything I'm aiming at, specifically, except to get spotted roses in as many colors as I can, and work out, in so far as is possible, the genetics of color inheritance.

One thing I do try to be sure to do, when not specifically crossing for color information, is to make sure I don't cross two roses of the same type.  Large-flowered roses (I agree with those who think "hybrid tea" no longer has any actual meaning) I tend to cross with ramblers and damasks.  Ramblers I cross with minis and gallicas.  Mosses I cross with everything.  Albas with English roses... etc.  So far I've only made one modern-to-modern cross: Cinco de Mayo to Sterling Silver.

The color changes one gets from Cinco de Mayo are just amazing.  Except for the yellow and orange of the young flowers, the rose reminds me strongly of  'Veilchenblau.'  (I've made a few crosses of these two, as well.)  I was wondering what would happen  if I were to get the rosacyanin that appears to be in here together with the rosacyanin in Sterling Silver or Stainless Steel (which isn't blooming at the moment).  I might make some crosses of this and Midnight Blue as well.


Now I can only wait and see.  And for once, getting old is not such a bad thing.   Even twenty years ago, the wait for next year would have been interminable.  Now I make a cross, two years go by, the flower blooms... and I have no recollection of what happened in the meantime!