New roses bloom at in­ter­na­tional tri­als

The Tribune (NZ) - - NEWS - RICHARD MAYS

Na­tional and in­ter­na­tional rose grow­ers will learn on Sun­day which of the new rose va­ri­eties grown in Palmer­ston North have been judged the best.

Over the past two years, 40 roses sub­mit­ted by grow­ers and hy­bridis­ers from around the world have been cared for by city coun­cil staff at the New Zealand In­ter­na­tional Rose Trial Grounds in the city’s Vic­to­ria Es­planade.

John Ford, chair­man of the trial ground com­mit­tee, said the an­nual awards re­flected the rep­u­ta­tion of the city and its Es­planade as an in­ter­na­tion­ally recog­nised rose grow­ing area.

At­tend­ing the pre­sen­ta­tion will be Matthias Meil­land from the fa­mous French rose breed­ing com­pany, Meil­land In­ter­na­tional.

Meil­land, the com­pany’s head of in­ter­na­tional pub­lic re­la­tions, is a sixth gen­er­a­tion rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the fam­ily business.

‘Peace’, the world’s best known rose, was bred by Meil­land’s grand­fa­ther, Fran­cis.

Meil­land will present a postlunch lec­ture prior to the pre­sen­ta­tions in the Es­planade’s Manawaroa Pavil­ion.

Ford said most of the new blooms in the rose trial grounds had never been seen be­fore in New Zealand and rep­re­sented the lat­est trends in the rose in­dus­try.

‘‘Rose breed­ers world­wide are breed­ing roses with more flow­ers

‘‘Rose breed­ers world­wide are breed­ing roses with more flow­ers and im­proved dis­ease tol­er­ance.’’ John Ford

and im­proved dis­ease tol­er­ance, plus more and more va­ri­eties than ever be­fore have fra­grant blooms.’’

The roses were eval­u­ated over the two year pe­riod by a panel of 20 judges on char­ac­ter­is­tics that in­clude colour, fra­grance, health, flower form, and nov­elty.

The top rose wins the Gold Star of the South Pa­cific, an award which would help the breeder and agent mar­ket it through­out New Zealand.

The other ma­jor award is the Sil­ver Star of the City of Palmer­ston North which goes to any win­ning rose bred by a New Zealand am­a­teur breeder.

Two merit awards, the June Hock­ing Fra­grance Award and the Nola Simp­son Nov­elty Award, named for two well-known lo­cal rosar­i­ans, will also be pre­sented.

Ford will be joined at the gazebo in the Du­gald Macken­zie Rose Gar­dens by Palmer­ston North city coun­cil­lor Brett Bar­rett to make the an­nounce­ments and pre­sen­ta­tions on Sun­day at 2.30pm.

Kiwi rose breeder Rob Somer­field won the Gold Star of the South Pa­cific award last year for ‘Fire­ball’.

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