Friday, May 20, 2011

New Additions, and a review.

Recently, due to a gift certificate for my birthday, and a little extra in the garden budget, I was able to acquire a few new roses. As any rose addict knows, this is a happy time in the garden. Fresh starts, new growth, the anticipation of when the package will arrive, where to put the plants, how they will grow and fill out. It is like a dose of rose-crack, straight into the veins. So with my gift certificate to ARE (antique rose emporium) I picked up two new roses, CL Cecile Brunner, a certified house eater from all accounts I have gathered, which I am still not sure as to its planting location yet. Also purchased was Duchesse de Gramont, a smaller, more in-bounds climber, which will serve as a "footer" to another, larger climbing rose on one of the four pergolas in the back rose circle. Then, I got the greater joy of purchasing 4 roses from a nursery I have been aching to order from for some time. Hartwood Roses, whose blog is on my favorites list (go visit) is run by one of the nicest people, and a great rose knowledge base, Connie. Though we have never met in person, I count her in my favorite people column, and I couldn't wait to order roses from her small nursery based outside of Fredricksburg VA. So order I did. I purchased a Reve d'Or, a beautiful climbing rose with a color like a golden sunrise, Garisenda, a barely pink rambler, the apparently unstoppable Peggy Martin, who gave the middle finger to Hurricane Katrina and kept right on growing, and The Bishop (apparently their are many roses called the bishop, but I think this one is also called Velours Episcopal, of which I have seen many pictures and loved every one)

So here comes the review section, and then pictures of the new babies...

I have ordered before from ARE, and had mostly success, and a couple of definitive failures. Overall, the roses are healthy, 2 gallon plants, with decent cane structures, and usually apparent signs of burgeoning new growth. The failures I speak of are the loss of 3 roses from them (out of the number I ordered, it isn't that bad overall) one of which was Souvenir de la Malmaison, a rose I adore and STILL don't have in my garden, due to it croaking. Of course, my laziness and inability to be confrontational kept me from calling and getting a free rose..but nevertheless. The two new roses arrived late last week, beautifully packaged as always, and ready to take over the world. Duchesse de Gramont has bloomed three times this week, still in its pot in a shady location (The pot ghetto begins again) and Cecile has new growth popping out all over. So that order was a success.

Today, I heard the knock of the package delivery guy, and was greeted at the door with a shallow rectangular package from Hartwood Roses. I nearly killed myself getting through the house to the back deck so I could unpack my new pretties. The roses were meticulously packed, secured to the box in such a way as to not have any breakage in transit. Each rose pot was wrapped to avoid drying out and there on the top was my handwritten bill of sale. Remember now, this is a 1-2 person operation, so the level of  care shown here reflects not on workers paid to do a single job, but of a nursery owner who wants to do the best job she can at making her customers happy. The roses themselves are beautiful; healthy canes, great foliage, and even a bloom on one. So an overwhelming recommendation goes out to order from Connie at Hartwood.  I know this all sounds very biased, but just so you know, there is no compensation or discount given here for this review. Just a very happy rose addict who would be pleased to see a small rose nursery run by a good person succeed. Order away won't be dissapointed.

And now for pictures of the babies:

a bloom on Peggy Martin, from Hartwood Roses

Duchesse de Gramont from ARE

CL Cecile Brunner from ARE

look how happy the foliage looks. The Bishop from Hartwood Roses.

My Hartwood Order.  From left to right: Reve d'Or, Garisenda, Peggy Martin, The Bishop

So there you have it. A new set of roses to place in the garden, a happy rose addict, and couple of great places to order roses from (although you know I am biased to one)

Happy gardening,


  1. I have had wonderful experiences with ARE. And Connie is a jewel with her passion for roses. I look forward to seeing your garden as it matures, in a few years.

  2. I wish I could order from Connie, but she doesn't ship to Arizona yet. I'll be interested to see how your Peggy Martin does. I just planted 3, and I hope they like winter (USDA zone 5, Sunset zone 2) as much as they tolerate sea water! Keep us posted!

  3. I've never had the courage to order plants on line.But with my new found love of antique roses(especially Florida cracker roses),and your recommendation,I think I will give it a try.I just need more space!

  4. Enjoyed your post! Love roses, but over the years have moved around to much to ever have but a few. Now live in an apartment in Palm Harbor and have plants in you have any suggestion for a rose that grows well in a container? Thanks so much!

  5. I can totally relate to your excitement when the package of "new" plants arrive in the mail. We gardeners can be like children at Christmas. :-)

    It's so wonderful to get excited over packages in which we already know what is inside.

    It looks like you've picked some nice new "babies." I added a Souvenir de la Malmaison last year to my garden and it is doing good despite the fact that I moved it to a new location this spring. Fortunately, it likes the new location better.

    This year I added 2 Drift roses...which I quickly fell in love with and added 3 more. I like their small but bushy size. So far, I'm very happy with them.

    Can't wait to see pics of your new roses in full bloom. Enjoy!

  6. That's the best kind of mail!

  7. Whoa! I've been so remiss on replying to comments.

    Sandra- Heres hoping both of our Peggy Martins love their new locations! I am thinking of growing mine up the columns of the front porch.

    ChrisC- Be cautious, this old rose thing is one heck of an addiction. That disclaimer out of the way, have fun selecting and growing. There is so much knowledge to be found through the blogs and GardenWeb Antique Roses forum, make use of it!

    Theanne and Baron- As far as container roses, I think the smaller bourbons and polyanthas would probably be the best choice, something like a Souv. de la Malmaison (bourbon) or a Clotilde Soupert would be able to be kept in the bounds of a pot. Also, on the Antique Rose Emporium there is a categorized search feature for different uses of roses, one being roses for containers, so that may give you a great jumping off point of which roses to look at.

    Susan- Have you ever noticed that "we who garden" speak a different language? I was talking to a non-gardening friend the other day about how excited I was to receive my new babies, and how I long for a source of free cow or horse manure. After a long pause, and that look that says "I think you need professional help", she said in a very calm voice, "You realize your'e excited about bushes and cow s**t." I quickly decided non-gardeners just don't get it. I'm not familiar with drift roses, is that a type or a specific cultivar? Either way it sounds really interesting, I would love to see pictures!

    Dani- If only roses would arrive instead of bills, the world would be a much nicer place!

  8. I know this all sounds very biased, but just so you know, there is no compensation or discount given here for this review..
    Thanks for post.
    Dogwood trees Tennessee

  9. I just saw this post, and I'm totally blushing. I'd love to know how your roses are faring, now that you've had them for a while.

    Peggy Martin will be happier draping along something instead of climbing a post. You could start her up the porch post, then encourage her to run along the railing and hang down. Once you have Peggy Martin, you have her for life. I moved mine last year, and there's a huge sucker that's grown from roots left behind in the original spot. I love this rose!!

    Just so you know, when you ordered Garisenda, I wanted to keep it for myself as an insurance copy of this very rare rambler. Take care of it. It's a beauty.