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What risky roses did you order?

Although I research roses well before I purchase them, every so often, for one reason or another, I order a rose that's a risk. I might not be sure if it will do well in my climate, or I might not even be sure if I will like the flowers. Most of my roses are purchased without seeing or smelling the variety in person, since the local rose garden is rather small, and local nurseries have limited selection. Glamis Castle was such a rose, removed when I hated the fragrance. Bishop's Castle also was purchased only based on this forum's descriptions and it has been fabulous. This year, my big risk is Dee-lish, which I decided upon only based on descriptions of its fragrance. I'm afraid that I will hate its color/form/bush, since I don't like the hybrid tea bush form. So what are your biggest gambles this year? And what are your biggest gamble successes?

Comments (63)

  • 7 years ago

    Carol: Yes, click 'edit', delete the é, and type an ' instead (or copy-paste).

    You used the accent, which is in the same row as the numbers, instead of the apostrophe, which on my Danish keyboard is in the same row as a, s d, e, f, and so on (to the right of these) . Hope this helps. :)

  • 7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    So funny that you mention Dee-lish, Noseometer. I have a Dee-lish (my risky purchase) growing near Mme. Joseph Schwartz and Baronne Prevost. That placement is wrong on so many levels, but areas of my garden were not ready for plantings and well.. there it went. For some reason I thought this rose was supposed to be pink with old fashion blooms and I could work it in. It was pink in the Fall, but now it is coral... not pinkish coral...which wouldn't work either. I am searching for a small non-modern rose or at least a modern with old world charm to take its place. Its days are numbered.

    Oh, and yes, it does have that upright, stiff form...which definitely works for some applications, but not the one I had in mind....

    Maybe you will have better luck with it.

    noseometer...(7A, SZ10, Albuquerque) thanked Lynn-in-TX-Z8b- Austin Area/Hill Country
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  • 7 years ago

    I order tons of risky roses every year. If it's not at least fairly healthy, it's bound to fail here, so many are risky.

    This year my risky ones were

    Sonia rykel

    yves piaget

    madame figaro

    guy de Maupassant

    rouge royale

    & princess Charlene de Monaco

    the worst one so far has been madame fígaro it just refuses to grow.

    Sonia and yves black spot but are vigorous so they have held up well the rest are too soon to tell.

    My biggest gamble success has to be wedding bells. I got it on the suggestion of Jim at K&M because they were out of Beverly and he spoke highly of it. I knew very little about it, but went for it. It's probably my best HT Rose now.

  • 7 years ago

    SoFL- oh darn! There was a huge Wedding Bells at the rose sale for $10. I wasn't sure about it so didn't buy it. Someone will be very happy with it from your description!

    Kate- I think we've all done that, more than once! :)

  • 7 years ago

    Lauriescreams - thanks for the offer - but it didnèt work. Itès with my keyboard.

    SoFl - Eeee!!! I canèt wait to get my Wedding Bells!!

    Carol

  • 7 years ago

    Ha, I'm in zone four. The question for me is which rose is NOT a gamble, lol... Biggest success, both Nahemas, one OR and one on huey, both made it through the winter! I even have one on multiflora coming from palatine next month, ordered just in case neither of the other 2 made it. Also Love Song appears to still be living...I guess it's still to early to be able to officially state they are all still living.

  • 7 years ago

    Lilyfinch - Good luck with your Wollerton. It smelled exactly like
    Glamis Castle to me (mothballs) but I love the smell of Jude (mangos).

    Desertgarden - If that's how Dee-lish (I'd rather call it Line Renaud) is going to be, maybe I should trial it in a pot first. Then it would be easy to give away if I hate it. Or I might hide it behind my Bishop's Castle.

    I agree that all roses have some risk (especially in my climate), but some are more so than others. Anything that might not tolerate dry heat is a big risk. I might have to remove Jude for that reason.

  • 7 years ago

    I'm fond of the early hybrid teas but they can be rather wimpy. I had Souvenir du President Carnot and I moved it to what I thought was a better place, but it was never happy again. However, I've ordered it again. Another oldie I'm getting is Mrs. Henry Morse, both of them from Rogue Valley Roses. I love the delicacy of the blooms but I've had a hard time keeping them alive. For some crazy reason I can't seem to stay away from them.

    Souvenir du President Carnot

  • 7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Gorgeous! No wonder you have trouble staying away, Ingrid.

  • 7 years ago

    Beautiful, Ingrid!

    Each year there always seems to be some.

    Dee-lish (yes, dumb name) is one of my "risks" this year as well and also bought based on reported fragrance and also disease resistance. I will be growing it in a large pot. Austin's Buttercup also based on fragrance, health, and wanting to have more semi-double blooms in the garden. I have found very little about both varieties and so it'll be fun to see how they turn out. Madame Isaac Pereire and Souvenir du President Lincoln - "health" risks. SdlM does just okay in my garden health wise and so I'm nervous to bring two more bourbons into my humid environment. But, oh, those blooms!

    Last year a couple of risks that turned out great: Sonia Rykiel - I was warned about her tendency to blackspot but the large cupped, intensly fragrant blooms are like no other. Devoniensis - risky growing her in my zone but kept her in a pot and overwintered her in my unheated garage. She did well and already has a big bud on her!

    noseometer...(7A, SZ10, Albuquerque) thanked Dave5bWY
  • 7 years ago

    Dave - "large cupped, intensely fragrant blooms are like no other." --- Ooooh!!! That sounds amazing!!!

    Ingrid - what stunning roses!!!

    Carol

  • 7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Kate... I also have strawberry hill new this year but I've seen excellent reviews! We will have to keep everyone updated. I had the lady gardener .. It arrived with a split graft so didn't do well and I should have complained to da but didn't . However the blooms I did get were wonderful! So I think you'll enjoy it . They just weren't exactly what the catalog showed. Our heat bleached them a bit.

    edited to add this is the lady gardener I forgot to label it . Sorry Kate!

    Dave I have a Sonia rykiel coming and appreciate the good report!!

  • 7 years ago

    Great pix, lilyfinch! Fingers crossed my Strawberry Hill looks as nice as that.

  • 7 years ago

    Red Intuition is a gamble to me as I've heard it is a greenhouse rose. But I've read some good reviews from people who grow it outdoors. I got it from Palatine in fall and out of 8 plants ordered it currently looks a little weaker than the others. Worth a try anyway.

    Rosecanadian, for me Granada is a very good hybrid tea. It hasn't suffered that much cold damage in recent very cold winters. It's vigorous and makes a well-branched plant with great rebloom. The fragrance is powerful and bs resistance good. I don't know how it would do in Canada.

    I finally replaced my old Angel Face last year with a virus indexed one from RU. It's growing well and I'm excited to have it back. It does get some bs but it's beautiful and a great bloomer. The virus indexed one seems vigorous enough so far.

    Other risky ones for me are fairly large plants my friend dug up and gave me from his garden. He is moving , leaving his beautiful garden. Some I planted in the ground are Laguna, Nahema, Irene Watts, and Above All. Others are in pots. I hope they make it.

    Other risky plants are perennials I bought in bags at Walmart. I don't think the lilies are very risky but I was not confident that dried out roots of poppies would make it. One piece is not doing too badly. Have a few Sea Holly that are looking good. I know Lily of the Valley is invasive some places but I have never succeeded with it. This year I'm trying it in a pot. Got a Bowl of Beauty Peony that is looking great. I got some purple and white freesia bulbs yesterday that I have no experience with . Want to smell those. Have a few seedlings coming along: forget-me-nots, zinnias, Heavenly Blue morning glories, cosmos, and single hollyhocks in mixed colors. Got a bag of black hollyhocks from Walmart last year and have a pretty good plant of that in the ground . Ostrich Fern also did ok from a bag.



    noseometer...(7A, SZ10, Albuquerque) thanked erasmus_gw
  • 7 years ago

    My other gamble for this year is Chrysler Imperial, which is a big risk for many reasons: I didn't want red roses in my garden, it's from a risky body bag, it's grafted (and I only grow own-root roses), it's a hybrid tea (I don't like the bush form of hybrid teas, and I don't like the flower form). So why grow it at all? Well, I sniffed it a couple of years ago at a nursery and I still remember that fragrance. At that nursery, it was also not a fire-engine red but a purple-red, which I do love. Then, there was a sale on body bags at a local nursery, and I gave in. So I'm growing it this year. In a pot. And I'm planting it deep so maybe it will grow own roots by next year if I like it enough that I want to put it in the ground.

    Last year's risk was Savannah, another HT (but not HT form in flowers at least). It grew and bloomed well in the heat, but has not tolerated the wild swings of spring here. That may be partly my fault since it went from pot to ground in December. Still, First Crush did fine after I moved it in January's warm spell. Maybe once it gets established it will be better.

    Another risk from last year was Ann's Beautiful Daughter, which was my foray into ARE's Pioneer roses. In its first year it was wimpy (grew like a miniature), black-spotty, with boring scentless flowers. A previous gamble was Mrs. BR Cant, borderline in my climate, barely survived winter and was not happy even after it warmed up, with scentless flowers, but that might have been a matter of siting, in retrospect. Now long removed.

    Then, there are the roses that were supposed to be a sure bet, but didn't do well...but that's for another thread.

  • 7 years ago

    That's a great thing about gardening; watching a plant surprise you with growth & blooms. Sometimes it doesn't work, but sometimes you just get such a surprise. Like other north (cold) gardeners the majority of my roses are a gamble every year. I have found the austin & shrub roses have faired better here than floribundas & hts. But I have not lost any yet in 3 years. I do not winter protect, but I plant deep to begin with. Because I only started growing roses a few seasons ago, I have one of each kind I saw & liked. I bought ones because they were in the store or on clearance, etc. So as my garden develops I will remove ones I just don't love or fail. But St. Patrick is the biggest gamble in my garden for zone hardiness. It surprised me by coming back last year after a bad winter. And performing wonderfully. Until the japanese beetles found it!

    Another rose I bought as a gamble is Delany sisters. Checked in the garden today & she is showing a lot of green toward ground level. She is a vigourous plant & floriferous. Her drawback is the thorns. It is the thorniest plant I've ever seen. But her blooms are lovely & change colour. Sometimes they are even less white & majority pink. This was taken in late october.

    Another gamble was othello - I've read not so great things about him here on this thread. It was a sad plant when I got it. But it took off, grew vigorously & rewarded me with this 1st bloom. Looking forward to see if it continues to do well this year!

  • 7 years ago

    Stunning pictures Halloblondie!


    Noseometer, I did the exact same thing recently with Chrysler Imperial! I don't care for red at all, only grow own-root, and this was in a grafted body bag. But I've heard such great reports about the scent that I just put him in a pot to hide him and see if he agrees with my nose.


    Also hiding with him are Double Delight, Oklahoma, and Mr. Lincoln. I almost hope that I don't like the fragrance because I really, really don't want any red to clash with my brick! I've actually seen red look quite traditional so it works great in some places, just not mine.

    noseometer...(7A, SZ10, Albuquerque) thanked lavenderlacezone8
  • 7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    I ordered both Wollerton old hall and Jude the obscure for the spring, now I'm thinking about exchanging Jude the Obscure to something else.......

  • 7 years ago

    I risk all the time with the gallicas and their hybrids :)

  • 7 years ago

    Summers - if you haven't tried Jude you need to at least try. Jude is one of my two most favorite fragrant roses. BUT - fragrance preference varies. Septer'd Isle made me almost throw up when I smelled her for the first time. But I like Gentle Hermoine and Corvedale which both have a myrrh scent.

    Halloblondie - Love your St Patrick!!!

    Lilyfinch- You reminded me that The Lady Gardener is one of my other risks this year. I needed another fragrant apricot in the garden and went with it vs other options because most Austins have done so well in my climate, although each variety from one breeder obviously has potential to vary. You'll love SR - After reading Right Rose, Right Place and forum posts I've learned she is meant for a ledge or large pot (where I have her now) and her heavy blooms can flop all they want.

  • 7 years ago

    I love this thread it's so interesting to read.

  • 7 years ago

    I agree Patty. So informative. Being in a cold zone I did not realize that people in the warmer zones have trouble growing certain classes or varieties. I am trying to figure out which ones I should try in the ground and which ones to grow in a pot to bring in the garage over winter. Star of the republic, deuil du Dr Renaud, madam Issac pierre, John Lang, pierre notting, baroness rothschild, comptesse dE segur, comptesse de roquingny....

  • 7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago

    Thanks Dave, I will give Jude a try. Love Othello, have 2, can't wait for them to bloom.

  • 7 years ago

    Othello is gorgeous!

  • 7 years ago

    Can't resist this thread. I bought a Chicago Peace this year despite having read on this forum that it didn't do well in southern California (although others say it does). There are buds on this baby right now, so we'll see.

    In 2014, I ordered three hybrid perpetuals which I knew were unsuited for our climate -- I knew it, and I ordered them anyway. You know how it is. Two of them, as well as a tea, Souvenir de Mme. Leonie Vientot, which should have done well here, gave up the ghost/were sp'd the first year.

    I hung onto Ardoisee d'Lyon because it's the only even moderately purple rose I have, and because when it does bloom (maybe three flowers total all this time), it's magnificent. Last year I moved it to a spot in front of the garage where it gets hours of southern exposure; it's huge now and has lots! of buds. Of course, it has been bug- and disease-prone, and until it went on the drip system there were weekly water traumas, but it appears satisfied now.

    My Marilyn Monroe came from a rose show, and I frankly was doubtful she could handle the heat. Not so! She's going into her third year and is at least four feet tall.

    I think there's been a thread on here on roses that disappointed/were overrated/were utter fails. Maybe it's time for a new one of those? I like to stay positive, but on the other hand humans have a need to vent ...

  • 7 years ago

    Summers, if you like fruity scent from roses, you will like Jude. That is one rose I need to replace. It died during the Polar Vortex. Scepter D'Isle smells like myrrh - not my favorite but I can tolerate it in small doses.

  • 7 years ago

    Dave , thanks for mentioning Sonia r is best in a pot . I don't have a ledge for her so maybe I'll do a season in a pot and see how it goes . Also cannot wait to smell scepter when it comes in to see if our noses are similar! Haha

    How is fragrance so crazily different ?!! Karen, Jude does not smell like fruit , it smells like a stinky baby diaper with a touch of baby powder and I have a one year old and I would know ! Lol !!! I really wish I could smell the magical Jude the way others do.


  • 7 years ago

    THat is so strange, Lilyfinch! Are you sure that you have the right Jude? To my nose, it sometimes had scent of peaches and strawberries.

  • 7 years ago

    I had it twice in Pittsburgh and hated it twice. I really admire the photos of it so much and would love to grow it ! But I could smell it a few feet away and it was overpowering . I know everyone smells things differently . Just so strange!

    I've mentioned it before but I can't smell peonies at all . My mother goes crazy over them ! If there is one plant in bloom it's all she talks about . Must just be my nose !

  • 7 years ago

    That's OK Lilyfinch. There are so many fragrant roses out there. Since space and time is limited, you just have to grow the roses that appeal to you the most. You're right about that - people smell things differently. I can't stand the fragrance of hyacinths and lilies but my sister loves them. The heady fragrance gives me a headache but has no effect on her.

  • 7 years ago

    erasmus - thanks for the info on Granada. :) Yes, I live in a cold climate - zone 3b, but I overwinter everything in the garage...so zone doesn't matter to me. From what you've written, I think I will love Granada!!

    Carol

  • 7 years ago

    I tried Lady Hillingdon, fail

    Mutabilis-had it for a few years until I tried it in a pot, wasn't happy, died

    Maggie-disappeared one winter

    Mme Alfred Carrière - I still have it, success

    Ferndale Red China, I LOVED this rose, would pot it up and bring it inside for the winter but one year I didn't get around to it and it died. It was so beautiful too..

    noseometer...(7A, SZ10, Albuquerque) thanked altorama Ray
  • 6 years ago

    HalloBlondie: I keep going back to your photo of Othello. It's gorgeous! Too bad it doesn't look like that in this climate.

    My big risk of Line Renaud (Dee-lish) seems to be doing okay. Seems to tolerate heat decently, and the first flowers were a bit strident in color, but today the flowers look good and are fragrant. Not as well-rounded a fragrance as Abe or Princess Charlene, but still very nice and so far the flowers don't look out of place in my garden of mostly Austins. I hope the plant fits in as well.

    My last minute big-risk was Princess Charlene de Monaco. Seems a bit touchy with either thrips or heat, but the flowers have some of the best fragrance in the garden. Not as fruity as Abe, but stronger and just as delicious. Color isn't as pink as I'd like, but actually very similar color to Belle Story.

  • 6 years ago

    Noseometer - Dee-Lish was one of my risks this year and I am loving it! It was very slow to get going but has been very disease resistant and the fragrance has to be in my top 5 favorite rose fragrances. Princess Charlene hasn't been as disease resistant but the ruffled blooms are nice - not as nice as yours look - and the fragrance is pleasing. I'm hoping with time she'll get better. A strong own root plant, though.

    noseometer...(7A, SZ10, Albuquerque) thanked Dave5bWY
  • 6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    Since I'm new to roses, does 'all of them' count as an answer? And oh, it's a list...

    I joined the forums to ask about a yellow climber for part shade in z6a/5b Northern MO (Hi Dave!) and ended up buying a few of the suggestions. None are quite right for the one spot I was asking about, but I know (mostly) where they'll go. Climbers will let me fit more in my small yard anyway, and I love yellow roses!

    From Heirloom, I got

    The Pilgrim (to be trained as laterally as possible, after reading comments on his bloom habits here)

    Graham Thomas

    Golden Celebration (these two had mixed reviews, so I'm putting them somewhere with more sun and airflow. Also training up trellises, if they {hopefully} climb)

    White Dawn (... what can I say, I wanted a white rose too)

    and then because I went back to the their website and thought 'I'll just look at the roses in this sale'

    Quicksilver (thinking of letting this climb a trellis with GC or GT)

    Ebb Tide (I was at Orschlen's of all places one spring and they had ET or Twilight Zone. I sniffed a bloom and I've regretted not buying that plant ever since)

    Julia Child (this was was at a local nursery one year, another I've regretted not getting after a sniff)

    But the post of shame continues guys. 7 roses purchased and I still don't have the climber for the original spot. I go to Rogue Valley Roses looking for Teasing Georgia and Crown Princess Margareta (no luck btw) and these jumped in my cart

    Abracadabra

    Halloween (my favorite holiday!)

    Monday I call Roses Unlimited to ask about CPM and TG, though I'm expecting they're out, and Twilight Zone, All-American Magic, and Black Magic too. Eat the poison, eat the plate?

    The hybrid teas (and TZ) are going in pots - I'm not risking them against the winter this year, getting them so late.

    Nine roses bought, seven holes dug/to dig (RVR's are going in pots), and I'm going to inquire about five more (two more holes, three more pots).

    I've wanted some roses ever since I saw and smelled that first Julia Child years ago, and now no one can stop me!

    Although maybe someone should hahaha.


    edited to add in that I'm looking for Twilight zone too. Holes/Pots count adjusted accordingly.

  • 6 years ago

    AC9 - looks like you're big into the Austins. :) They sure can be pretty. I'm curious about Julia Child...I didn't think it had much fragrance. Can you describe how fragrant it is and what type of fragrance?

    Carol

  • 6 years ago

    Rosecandadian, I remember it was rather fragrant as a potted plant - I wouldn't say you could smell it from several feet away, but closer to the plant. I can't remember exactly what it smelled like, just that I really liked it. It wasn't super strong but also wasn't cloying, rather it was a fresh, bright scent, if that makes sense.

    I wish I could have visited the rose growing somewhere local(ish) before I bought it, but I'm in a Triangle of Nowhere - 2+ hours one way to the rose gardens or nurseries most likely to have a decent selection. The one botanical garden closer doesn't have much in the way of roses.

    David sure produces some lovely yellows. Ask me next fall if I still like Austins, after I try to grow some!

  • 6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    What Cynthia said. They're all risky in zone 5 and under. Also, Hybrid Teas. I don't care for the typical high centered form anyway, but some HTs have a more old-fashioned form, which I have succumbed to. Shrubs are safest, and I do prefer the informal structure. My risks this year are some Delbard and Guillot roses I know nothing about and are iffy in my zone. I will have to protect them during winter, something I have never done. I hope they're worth it. :)

    Such a vast difference of opinions about Jude. It is one of my very favorites in form, color and fragrance. Might be interesting to see if the fragrance varies by climate, soil type, amendments, etc. Mine is in mostly compost with one of the Tones mixed in, my soil is alkaline clay, and I use cracked corn to feed it. It gets a little afternoon shade and extra water. And, smells divine!

  • 6 years ago

    ac91 - yes! "All of them" does count! Just about all my roses were a risk, too, since the Austins don't seem to be universally successful here. Maybe it's the dryness/low humidity and intense sunlight here, but what seems to do the best in all my neighbors yards are the hybrid teas. Unfortunately those are my least favorite class of roses, although some of the newer hybrid teas have a more old-rose look to them. The Austins are much more temperamental in this climate - which is the opposite of England's moist and mild climate. But that look is my favorite. I minimize the risk by reading what others who have tried them say. That's why Dee-lish and PCdM were "risky" roses - they might have that HT bush form. The jury is still out. Good luck on yours. Some will work out, and some may not. Sometimes a plant will surprise you. Sometimes you just learn more about yourself in the process.

  • 6 years ago

    ac91 - I hope your Austins work out well for you. I've found they grow very well here for me in the greater St Louis area. I have ended up removing most non-Austins. I have been trying some of the older (often less disease resistant) Austins with mixed results.

    Noseometer - I can understand why they are more temperamental for you. Usually (not this year) we get decent rainfall here but they still appreciate supplemental water.

    noseometer...(7A, SZ10, Albuquerque) thanked Dave5bWY
  • 6 years ago

    ac91 - hm.....sounds like maybe I should try it. :)
    Carol

  • 6 years ago

    I ordered Talisman despite its ARS rating of 5.3. Also, the only plant I've seen in person appeared to have perished in a public garden. I just really wanted to try it and got excited seeing this one was "in stock."

    Justin

    noseometer...(7A, SZ10, Albuquerque) thanked WildWhiteRose
  • 6 years ago

    Thanks Dave! Good to hear they do so well for you! I'll keep that in mind if I add any more, and keep an eye on 'Graham' and 'Celebration'. Is that 'The Pilgrim' by chance in your ideabook? The ones you have are gorgeous.

    Pots are even easier than digging holes, Rosecanadian! If you have an empty pot, why not? HMF had the fragrance as "Strong, anise, licorice fragrance," but I don't remember it as licorice-y. Maybe more like star anise? A rose that smelled like fresh spices would definitely be a favorite of mine, so that's possibly what I'm remembering.

  • 6 years ago

    I got Soleil d'Or from RVR because I read it was the worst bush ever and I thought that sounded like a challenge. I love it. It is buried in grass and trying so hard.



  • 6 years ago

    I bought 2 bare root Ambridge Rose plants from DA this spring despite the mixed reviews - its color was just such a perfect fit for where they were going. Unfortunately, both plants were extremely small - by FAR the smallest Austins I've ever seen - and neither has grown much or bloomed yet so I cannot judge my decision.

  • 6 years ago

    I like the way you think, Sheila! LOL! Rd'O looks very pretty in the naturalized setting.

  • 6 years ago

    Sheila - well...you're up for the challenge - looks like it's doing well. :)

    Carol

  • 6 years ago
    last modified: 6 years ago

    ebharvey, if you are patient with your Ambridge Rose plants, you will not regret it. It took mine (own root band) a few years to do anything at all. This year it is making up for the wait and I wish I had more. Those blooms are the most luscious pale peach sherbet and the fragrance is just as luscious as the color. I can't tell you how many times I thought it was a dud, but it wasn't in the way, so I left it and I'm so glad I did. I think it gets bad reviews because often it isn't given the time it needs. It's a wonderful, strong, healthy rose.

    Ambridge Rose

  • 6 years ago

    I'll be patient with them, thanks. I just hope the turn out the same color as yours to act as a 'bridge' between strawberry hill and carding mill.