CAROLYN'S COMPOSITIONS

September 20, 2012

Ancient Roses

CAROLYN’S COMPOSITIONS

ANCIENT ROSES

In my novel it is May 1791. Madame Rosalie de Leval, the main character, arrived from France and explored Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Along the way her daughter Saraphine, about ten, spotted some flowers growing at the home of William and Ann Willings Bingham. What should these roses be?

Ancient roses are varieties of rose bushes that were known to be in existence prior to 1867 when modern hybridization techniques were introduced and began to gain momentum. These beautiful roses fell out of favor in the 20th century but are quickly regaining popularity as people discover that  old rose varieties are easy to grow and elegant.2

I discovered an Internet site listing old roses and made a list of those introduced to the United States prior to the 1790s—ten varieties. Next, I researched whether the roses bloomed in the Philadelphia gardening zone, if they roses bloomed in May, and if they required sun or shade..

All the roses on my list grow in zones 4-9.

My search for the zone qualification was surprisingly challenging. I recall once seeing a simple zone map with temperatures listed.. Now there are planting zones, climate zones, and hardiness zones.

Zone maps are tools that show where various permanent landscape plants can (more…)

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.