Bourbons … some of the Old Beauties

Bourbons were the roses of Victorian England and probably originated from a natural cross between Old Blush (China Rose) and Quatre Saisons (Damask), two roses which were used as hedge material on the island of Bourbon (now Reunion). They produce beautiful, large, full old rose, crepe-like blooms on vigorous growing bushes. These blooms have a wonderful, heady fragrance and many Bourbons repeat bloom.

One of my favorite Bourbons is Queen of Bourbons (sometimes called Bourbon Queen) although it does not repeat bloom for me in my Zone 5b garden–when she blooms, she BLOOMS!

Last year I sent a picture of the Queen of Bourbons to The American Rose Society and she was chosen to be in the 2013 calendar. So, you could say my Queen of Bourbons is a calendar girl.

I think she took her calendar girl status to heart and upped her game because she went from beautiful last year to magnificent this year. I may have to send another picture or two to ARS.

With her neighbors...
With her neighbors…

photo 4



Reaching for the clouds……

Peter and the Old Beauties

I often say that I have never met a rose I didn’t want. And, though that may be true, it is the old roses like the Bourbons that legendary rosarian, Peter Beales’, referred to as the Old Beauties—they are my very favorites.

Old Beauties are survivors.
Old Beauties are beautiful.
Old Beauties are enchanting.
Old Beauties are incredibly fragrant.
Old Beauties have a rich history.

As I write today in my Potting Shed, I have on my desk a bucket of Old Beauties. Yes, I think Peter had them aptly named.

Old Beauties

Purchasing Bourbons and other Old Beauties….

Rose Petal Nursery
Antique Rose Emporium

Other articles you might enjoy…

Roses Old & New…
Buying Roses & Rose Products…

Potting Shed Review: Everyday Roses

A_yOtW-CcAMbH55.jpg-largeWhether you are  just beginning with roses or have been growing roses for a long time, you will thoroughly enjoy this book by popular garden expert, Paul Zimmerman. This book is beautiful, helpful, inspirational and pure garden joy.

Everyday Roses is designed specifically for weekend gardeners and homeowners who love roses but don’t have the time or inclination to deal with the care and prevention measures high-maintenance roses require.

This handy reference shows how you can enjoy the best of both worlds: gorgeous, healthy, long-flowering roses with a minimum of fuss.

I recently had the pleasure of chatting with Paul on Rose Chat Radio. You can listen to the recording of the show HERE.

Don’t miss one of my favorite parts of the chat … when Paul talks about his friendship with famed British nurseyman and rose expert, Peter Beales.
If  you’d like to purchase a copy or read more about this book and other articles by Paul, hop over to his website and check it out … click here.

Paul also manages a rose forum where you can seek answers and offer advice! Click here.