It is June which in the southern hemisphere heralds winter. The onset of winter means early morning frosts, cool nights and some welcome rain. The roses are mostly dormant and the landscape has a blessed break from summer weeds, heat, and dust. Although, in limbo, the garden work continues with plans for Spring. In fact, in this climate, more work is achieved in Autumn and winter than in the rest of the year.
Autumn has left the garden full and overgrown, especially the late flowering salvias that are over two metres tall. Some roses have sparse leaves and many have started to turn yellow from the cold.
This year one of my most stunning and long-lasting roses is a Meilland bred rose from France, released in Australia in 2002, called ‘Best Friend’. When I left the garden a few weeks ago ( at the end of May), it was in flower and still beautiful despite the cold weather. The RSPCA named this Hybrid Tea rose to honour the special friendship we gain from loving a pet. This rose is magnificent with large blooms on long straight stems in a classic style, bright, deep green foliage, and an exotic fragrance. Best Friend has won five awards for the scent alone.
Princess de Monaco rose like her namesake is a beautiful, elegant rose that continues to bloom well into winter. A Hybrid Tea rose Bred by Marie-Louise Meilland in 1981 has large, soft ivory blooms tinged with pink on the edges and healthy, glossy foliage. This rose named after Grace Kelly or Princess Grace of Monaco has flowered all season, perfectly. The plant is sturdy, upright, which I love for roses, and very hardy. It is also a surprise that so many roses continue to bloom prolifically whilst growing in large containers rather than in the ground.
Princess Grace of Monaco will be always remembered through roses because of the 8,000 rose bushes, and more than 300 varieties of roses in a garden oasis in Monaco called the ‘Princess Grace Rose Garden’. It was inaugurated in 1884 and many of the roses grown are named after members of the Royal family or well-known people and friends of Monaco.
An organisation called Les Amis de la Roseraie Princesse Grace de Monaco runs the rose garden and they have courses on horticultural themes such as rose pruning and an international Rose Competition. The Princess Grace Rose Garden is situated on Avenue des Guelfes in Fontvieille, and is open all year round, from sunrise to sunset.
A new rose this year in my garden is Jubilee Celebration, pictured above. I’m amazed at how many blooms it has produced. It has not been out of flower for months after a prolific and robust spring and summer season. Planted last July as a bare root rose into a pot with good quality potting mix, Jubilee Celebration has bright coral-pink flowers that sit very gracefully on the branches. They are soft and pretty but also quite luminescent, growing in an arching style. Bred by David Austin roses in the UK, in 2002, it also has a fresh, lemony, raspberry scent. Jubilee Celebration has been one of the most charming roses with masses of blooms, more than I’ve ever seen on one plant in just one season so far.
My absolute favourite rose that was still blooming when I was last in the garden is the Claude Monet™ It has not grown very tall as yet, but has stunning blooms. The Paul Cezanne Hybrid tea rose was named after the French impressionist artist by the same name and bred by Jack Christensen before 1992, USA. It was introduced to France as Claude Monet™ by Delbard as part of their painters series roses. To read more about the Delbard Painters series visit my previous post here.
The Claude Monet rose is a mix of striking bright, pinks, yellows and cream but at other times soft pastel shades adorn each petal. Always delightful the petals appear hand-painted as if Monet himself had splashed the colours across each petal with a brushstroke. The shrub is small but flowers continuously all season and still in late May was out with multiple flowers. The blooms are double shaped and highly attractive. Set in the garden on the border amongst the vibrant green foliage and growing near La Vien Rose as part of my French garden, it is spectacular and should grow to 130-150 cms tall. Claude Monet was born in Paris on 14 November 1840 and died in December 1926.
A surprise rose that has bloomed until late this year is ‘In Appreciation’. Another hybrid Tea rose was bred in Germany by Hans Jurgen Evers in 1991 and introduced into Australia by Nieuwesteeg Rose Nursery in 2004. In Appreciation is a bright, radiant, vibrant pink that shows off in the garden and can be picked for cut flowers.
Di Baker Content 2021
All images are taken from my garden in 2021
Title quote by Christina Winsey-Rudd