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carla17_gw

Mutabilis

carla17
15 years ago

I'm wondering if I should enable my friend to get this rose. I don't have it either. I would like to hear about rebloom and any other opinions. If anyone has pictures available, I would appreciate that too.

Thank you,

Carla

Comments (58)

  • bettyn_gardener
    15 years ago

    The one drawback with Mutabilis for me is rust. I love the rose, but sometimes I have to remove a lot of foliage to keep the rust in check. This year is OK so far, but we've had a pretty dry spring...

    BettyN

  • tenor_peggy
    15 years ago

    May I hijack this thread with one question? If I put it in a pot can it be kept to a reasonable size (4 feet max)?

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  • jerijen
    15 years ago

    BettyN -- That's odd.
    Rust can be a big problem here for us, but I've never EVER seen Mutabilis rust. How old is your plant?

    Peggy -- I don't know. I suspect it could, at least for a few years. Give it a try!

    Jeri

  • patricianat
    15 years ago

    Mine was more than 10 feet and I cut it back to 20 inches this year. Might be the end of it, but we will see. I love it because it blooms all the time and blooms are all colors.

    In a garden I know the owner has grown four of them around the perimeter of a square bed like columns and keeps it trimmed round and narrow, perfectly stunning.

  • anntn6b
    15 years ago

    I was sitting in the shade made my mine this morning, cutting out the stems it had abandoned as it grew.
    A rose that makes shade is a wonderful thing.

  • oldblush
    15 years ago

    Carla if you do decide to give or get this rose be SURE to give it plenty of room. I planted one in November '03 from Chamblees. It got big fast and I began pruning it back to 3 feet in mid summer and again in late winter. Late this winter I made the decision to get rid of it and plant another in a more spacious location. The trunk was at least 5 inches in diameter and roots that went to he**. It's a beautiful rose, blooms all the time but the size is not typical of any other china I've seen.

  • stefanb8
    15 years ago

    I think it's safely considered a tea rose, and not a China. Rosa x odorata 'Mutabilis'.

  • jerijen
    15 years ago

    Nope. It's classed as a China.
    It's just a big girl.

    There's some size back there behind the early China Roses, after all. Don't forget R. gigantea. :-)

    Jeri Jennings

  • stefanb8
    15 years ago

    R. gigantea is actually in the background of teas (hence R. x odorata, the other parent being R. chinensis). Genetically, I doubt 'Mutabilis' would ally with the Chinas as closely as with the teas. It is thus listed by the Royal Horticultural Society, as well; tradition and lack of scrutiny are probably the reasons why the ARS hasn't caught up yet.

  • jerijen
    15 years ago

    Well, with all due respect to the Royal Horticultural Society, I'm fairly sure we see more development of Mutabilis in the U.S. than they do in England. :-)
    The rose doesn't care. However, if you grow it in the midst of Chinas, you see that it' pretty much like any of them, only bigger than most are allowed to get.
    And as far as size, heck, my "China From Adina" was a good 8 ft. tall and 6 ft. wide -- until the hired gardeners killed it with Roundup for easier cemetery mowing.
    I'm never comfortable with Eggsperts coming along and changing the historic classifications of old roses. It's the sort of thing ARS gets criticized for.

  • ronda_in_carolina
    15 years ago

    Well I think we should just consider it a TREE!!

    Seriously, mine is so big that durning a storm it was blown away from the house and now I have no idea how to get it back in the ground. Half the root ball is out but the rose doesnt seem to care. Perhaps the roots do go to HE**? At any rate....I will stake it this week and hope that holds.

    Ronda

  • burntplants
    15 years ago

    I posted a pic of my Mutabilis up for you on my blog.
    Erasamus's pics are fabulous--that's how the blooms look.

    My pic is a full-shrub view.
    The bush is less than 3 years old, and it's 12 ft X 12 ft.
    And while chinas and Mutabilis do not normally have any scent, whenever you go near this one you smell classic rose attar. With hundreds of blooms on it, it can't help but smell good.

    BTW, this pic was taken in February--it blooms better March-December!

    Here is a link that might be useful: my Mutabilis

  • burntplants
    15 years ago

    here's a more direct link...

    Here is a link that might be useful: Mutabilis

  • remontant
    15 years ago

    Burntplants, I couldn't get logged in to register a comment on your blog, but thank you for posting the photo. Wow! I hope mine will get that big some day! It's gorgeous!

  • patricianat
    15 years ago

    burntplants, that's sort of what mine looked like. I cut it back to about 20 inches. It has not died yet. I doubt it will. I just needed to get through it to prune three Crepuscules nearby. I will probably move it soon.

    My Devoniensis is bigger than a Buick. My neighbor asked me today if I minded (hint, hint, I think she was asking me to do it) if her gardener cut my lady Devoniensis out of her bradford pears and off her house. Last year she told me she liked it growing in her tree and for some reason today, she wants it cut out of the tree and off her house. It's not even started blooming good yet.

  • stefanb8
    15 years ago

    True Rosa chinensis doesn't come in yellow, or with strong yellow shadings; that simple fact places this rose as Rosa x odorata (Rosa odorata according to the Flora of China, interestingly). Whether we choose to accept it or not, we are dealing with species and their near hybrids, and the ARS "class" is less significant than a true botanical classification although in most cases they tend to agree. If you're comfortable with it as Rosa x odorata 'Mutabilis' but you want to call it a China, then carry on. But the botanical classification will most likely be the one that sticks in the long run.

  • garden_party
    15 years ago

    I grow Mutabalis on its own root (of course) and like it a lot. It always has blooms on it, never needs to be pampered and no disease.

    Patricia, I'm glad to hear your Devoniensis is doing so well! I have a new baby on one side of an arbor leading to my pond garden area. Gosh, it is so little. I'd say the whole thing isn't more than 6 inches and has tiny leaves on it. It has a really long way to go, but it was recommended by Malcolm Manners and I have heard good things from folks in Florida about it. Does it grow fast? I'd love to see pictures of it. I have golden showers on the other side of the arbor. I thought it would be a nice combo. We shall see.

  • jon_in_wessex
    15 years ago

    Do you mean this one? Of course, it has to be heavily pruned to allow window cleaners access :) I wonder what part of its development we have missed?

    Grow it and enjoy it!

    {{gwi:241421}}

    Best wishes to all
    Jon

  • tenor_peggy
    15 years ago

    Dear me...Mutabilis is wonderful but I fear it would be too big (and a constant battle) to keep it in a container. :-(

  • garden_party
    15 years ago

    Jon, is that Devoniensis? Mutabalis isn't a climber. I'm confused.

  • Sally "Cricket" Benfer
    15 years ago

    Road trip to Jon's house

  • carla17
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    Thank you all for your participation. Consider me forewarned about the size and I'm with Ronda, it is a tree.

    Carla

  • oldblush
    15 years ago

    There are roses and then there are "Jon's Roses"! Wow! He sets the bar high doesn't he. Thanks Jon!
    Hamp

  • jon_in_wessex
    15 years ago

    Thanks, Hamp, but, nah - not mine! This is at Kiftsgate Court - the other climber is 'Blairii 2' (again, not really a climber ;)

    Many Chinas / Teas will climb if you ask them nicely. 'Mutabilis' is grown in any garden worthy of the name.

    Best wishes
    Jon

  • debnfla8b
    15 years ago

    But aren't china's noted for their tendancy to color change as they age...like Archduke Charles?? I have always considered my Mutablis a china.

    So far mine is about 6 wide and 4 ft high...so far! This year it is really showing off, hundreds of blooms and the bees just love it. I have also heard this rose called the, "Butterfly Rose". It does look like butterflies flapping their wings when a breeze hits the bush. I have every color imaginable on my Mutablis this morning....I am just so in love with this one right now.

    Deb

  • oath5
    15 years ago

    I love Mutabilis! I can pick up a faint but nice scent from it, a very ephemeral slightly spicey smell.

  • stefanb8
    15 years ago

    The color darkening is a character from the China rose, yes - but the tea is a hybrid of the China, so this is hardly surprising.

    I get a delicious, fruity scent just as the flower is first opening; I love it. I also absolutely adore the way the British decorate their walls with shrubs and climbers (and trees). Thank you, Jon!

  • nickelsmumz8
    15 years ago

    But Stefan, it helps to have such beautiful walls like that one at Kiftsgate. Sigh.

    My mutabilis arrived yesterday, so at least I (in extremely doubtful theory) now have a garden worthy of that name.

  • michaelg
    15 years ago

    I watched a couple of young plants in Asheville for three years, and they lost about 90% of the canes each winter/spring to canker. Actually it seems to be the most susceptible of any rose I've observed. I haven't looked lately, but I suppose eventually they would establish some old barky canes that would hold up.

  • patricianat
    15 years ago

    Michael, that is an interesting observation, as I lose a lot of cane to canker each year. This year my husband said he is cutting it back to a fare-thee-well. We cut it back to about 20 inches. We will see what happens. Yes, it really does get canker very badly. Now that we are debating if it is tea or china, the susceptibility to canker might suggest it is a modern HT. (Insert winkie here).

  • remontant
    15 years ago

    MichaelG, I'm so glad to hear you say that. I was beginning to think I was the only one who couldn't grow honkin' big Mutabilis because of my cane canker problems.

  • newyorkrita
    15 years ago

    All this talk has inspired me. I added Mutabilis to my Roses Unlimited order coming the end of this month. I am digging out an old nerdy grapevine that I hate and putting Mutabilis in its place.

    Does this rose need spraying?

  • debnfla8b
    15 years ago

    Mutabilis is ONE rose that I have never had to spray!!

    NEVER!! I love this rose.

    I live in hot, muggy, humid, blackspot heaven too.

    Deb

  • mudbird
    15 years ago

    my Mutabilis is 10 yrs old with a base the size of a small tree. We keep it pruned to about 6ft tall x 8 ft wide, but it would like to just keep going and going. I have a new one planted in the worst spot in my yard: dry, semi-shady, windy and atop a retaining wall so the soil tends to drain too fast and turn into concrete over the summer -- a small 1-gal ownroot planted last fall and it's 5 ft already! A friend of mine has a house with a very old Mutabilis -- guessing it's way older than 10 yrs -- it covers her carport and stretches up to the 2nd floor of the next house! Yes, Mutabilis does like southern California, even with ocean wind, shade, and alkaline soil! I've got mine planted with purple pennisetum grass, and grey-green pittosporumshrubs and oleanders behind, looks great even with minimal watering.

  • TXcathy7b8a
    15 years ago

    Add me to the group of Mutabilis groupies. My Mutabilis has been wowing me for over a week now, and shows no signs of lessening the show anytime soon. I LOVE this rose! It is so un-rose-y looking.... I like to think of it as my favorite blooming shrub. Talk about low maintenance with high floral rewards!! I am thinking about adding a second Mutabilis to my yard this year. I like it that much. (plus, I think it might take a second Mutabilis on the opposite side of the yard to visually balance my current Mutabilis monster) ;) This rose likes Texas.

    Cathy

  • robin_d
    15 years ago

    this is what mine looked like in its 3rd year from a rooted baby:

    {{gwi:241423}}

    It's smaller now, as it blew over in a windstorm last winter and had to be whacked way back to get it to stay in the ground when we replanted it.

    It's one of my favorites, too.

    {{gwi:241425}}

  • michaelg
    15 years ago

    Returning to the theme of canker problems in some climates, I just checked in on the plant I mentioned above, which grows in a public place but with skilled care. It is around 3 x 3 after about five years. Most of the standing canes are cankered, some very severely, and some have died since spring pruning.

  • newyorkrita
    15 years ago

    After threads like this that made me notice this rose, I bought one (own root) from Roses Unlimited last summer. It started flowering shortly after I planted it and never stopped.

  • jerijen
    15 years ago

    SOMEONE planted one in an inconvenient spot at the Stagecoach Inn, in Newbury Park (SoCalif).
    It HAS to be pruned some, or the watering system cannot be accessed.
    Not the least dismayed, it is climbing up and through a Live Oak Tree. WONDERFUL rose.

    Jeri

  • ronda_in_carolina
    15 years ago

    Mine is on a North Wall. It gets mostly reflected light from the proximity of the neighbors house and it still is 6 feet tall and blooms like mad. Imagine if I had it in a position proper for a rose!!!

    Ronda

  • ingrid_vc so. CA zone 9
    15 years ago

    It's interesting to note that all the respondents who reported canker problems live in the South. I've grown Mutabilis in about five different locations (not one of them optimal) and have never observed any signs of canker. Blackspot yes, quite a bit of that. I don't spray, but the diseased leaves fell off and new ones grew immediately so it's not much of a problem. My latest Mutabilis grows in minimal sunlight (just a few morning hours in the summer and almost none in the winter) and is still growing and blooming well. It's in many ways a very unique and wonderful rose.

    Ingrid

  • jerijen
    15 years ago

    Interesting Ingrid:

    We DON'T get blackspot on it (nor canker, actually) tho I was surprised this morning to see a bit of blackspot on Champagne Cocktail.

    Jeri

  • ingrid_vc so. CA zone 9
    15 years ago

    Jeri, at my present home Mubabilis has no black spot but IHT, Heinrich Karsch and Baby Faurax do. I don't even try to figure it out any more.

    Ingrid

  • sherryocala
    15 years ago

    I really don't know what canker is, but I noticed that 2 posters who said their Mutabilis got canker were in zone 6b and one was in zone 8. Could cold winters be the problem? I always thought Chinas favored mild winters. Just wondering. Maybe more winter protection is needed.

    Also, Patricia43, if you read this, how did your friend keep her Mutabilis cut like a column? That sounds like something I could do if I knew how. (I don't have room for a 12x12 bush, and that is surely what it would be here.) It seems like you'd have to cut away entire canes - and a lot of them. But if the rose didn't mind, I would be interested in knowing exactly what to do to accomplish this.

    Sherry

  • azmutabilis
    15 years ago

    tenor_peggy, I have had mine in a pot for 4 years (our garden is in flux and our desert soils are rotten):
    {{gwi:241426}}

    This was taken in April. By November it was well over the wall behind it. I prune fairly hard.

    If you pot it I would recommend getting the widest, largest pot you can. Wide so it doesn't blow over (more stable), and so its roots can spread. Mine is 2 feet across.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Container gardening in the desert (from my blog)

  • jerijen
    15 years ago

    Sherry, I don't know how these things are done, but there was one at the Pacific Asia Museum in Pasadena, CA.
    It grew in their courtyard, and they had it pruned like a gigantic bonsai tree. A most remarkable sight.

    Jeri

  • carla17
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    I am really taken by Jon's picture.

    Carla

  • ingrid_vc so. CA zone 9
    15 years ago

    Jeri, I saw that very same tree! It wasn't blooming much at the time and it took me a while to identify it. Very appropriate location though, given the Oriental origin of this rose.

    Ingrid

  • jerijen
    15 years ago

    So it is still there? That's a relief!
    I don't think it has a lot of light, so might not bloom as well as it could otherwise. But it's quite a sight, ain't it?
    :-)

    Jeri

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