Fire­ball top rose

The Tribune (NZ) - - GARDENING -

New rose va­ri­eties that pro­duce lots of flow­ers and are less sus­cep­ti­ble to dis­ease topped the New Zealand Rose So­ci­ety In­ter­na­tional Trial Awards in Palmer­ston North on Sun­day.

‘Fire­ball’ an or­ange rose bred by Rob Somer­field of Glenavon Roses in Tau­ranga, took out the pre­mium Gold Star of the South Pa­cific award.

‘‘I’m look­ing to breed healthy, compact plants with lots of flow­ers that peo­ple will enjoy grow­ing in their gar­dens’’ Rob says.

Win­ner of five pre­vi­ous Gold Star awards, the breeder also picked up two cer­tifi­cates of merit for the shell pink ‘Shangri-La’ and an un­named white flori­bunda rose. Fire­ball will be re­leased onto the New Zealand mar­ket within the next two or three years.

Whanganui rose breeder and grower Bob Matthews of Matthews Nurs­eries was also awarded a cer­tifi­cate of merit for an un-named large flow­er­ing pink rose and col­lected a cer­tifi­cate of merit on be­half of Colin Dick­son of North­ern Ire­land for the apri­cot bronze rose ‘Sky­chaser’.

John Ford, chair­man of the In­ter­na­tional Rose Trial Grounds com­mit­tee says the New Zealand Rose So­ci­ety tri­als in the Du­gald Macken­zie Rose Gar­dens, are now into their 45th year. "This was a very good trial with some ex­cel­lent roses en­tered, with some un­lucky to miss out on an award.’’

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