Tony Dick­er­son an­swers your ques­tions

Can you iden­tify our mys­tery rose?

Garden News (UK) - - Garden News - TONY DICK­ER­SON


Can you name our climb­ing rose? Frances Bun­yan, Caer­philly, South Wales


With more than 10,000 regis­tered roses, un­less you know the rose’s name, iden­ti­fi­ca­tion is usu­ally im­pos­si­ble with­out com­par­ing fresh, flow­er­ing spec­i­mens with plants in a large ref­er­ence col­lec­tion.

‘Lady Hilling­don’ is a pos­si­bil­ity be­cause it matches your de­scrip­tion and is heav­ily fra­grant, but there are prob­a­bly dozens of oth­ers that would be sim­i­lar.

There are other ways you can still try to iden­tify the rose your­self. It may be pos­si­ble for you to match your rose to one in a liv­ing col­lec­tion. Con­sider vis­it­ing a spe­cial­ist rose gar­den, such as David Austin Rose Gar­dens in the West Mid­lands, Mot­t­is­font Abbey in Hamp­shire or Peter Beales Rose Gar­den in Nor­folk.

Most spe­cial­ist rose nurs­eries have search­able on­line cat­a­logues where you can use var­i­ous fil­ters to nar­row down the search. As well as the nurs­eries men­tioned above the fol­low­ing sites are use­ful: Hark­ness Roses, Apul­dram Roses, C & K Jones Roses and Fryer’s Roses.

You might find a match by com­par­ing your rose with pic­tures in books. How­ever, when com­par­ing roses with pic­tures in books or on­line you should be aware that colour pho­tos of im­ages can be un­re­li­able. Also bear in mind that rose flow­ers change in shape and colour as they ma­ture.

Use­ful ref­er­ences in­clude the RHS En­cy­clo­pe­dia of Roses by Charles and Brigid Quest-Rit­son, Clas­sic Roses (an il­lus­trated hand­book and grower’s man­ual of old roses, shrub roses and climbers) by Peter Beales and Botan­ica’s Roses – The En­cy­clo­pe­dia of Roses.

As a last thought, if you could get some hard­wood cut­tings of the cur­rent year’s growth from your pre­vi­ous prop­erty you could sim­ply prop­a­gate it by in­sert­ing these into some well-pre­pared ground.

Ide­ally, dig over and insert a spade to full depth. Push it back and for­ward to cre­ate a deep V-shaped trench about 5cm (2in) across and pour in sharp sand be­fore in­sert­ing the cut­tings to three-quar­ters of their length. In 12 months they should be ready to lift and grow on.

‘Lady Hilling­don’ is a heav­ily-scented re­peat-flow­erer for a high wall or fence

Why not prop­a­gate your rose and bring it with you when you move house?

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