The highly scented old garden roses are starting to flower in the Exedra Garden. We have Gallicas, Damasks, Moss Roses and Albas, and there is a species list/plan in the Exedra Garden which identifies the location of all the roses.
Two of my favourite ancient roses are:-
- Rosa gallica ‘Versicolor’(1794) also known as Rosa Mundi, which is loaded with its attractive striped crimson and white flowers
- Rosa ‘Celsiana’ (1750), a Damask rose which has very fragrant blush pink flowers which cover the shrub for up to 3 weeks – though only flowering once each season.
Method of supporting roses
We support our old shrub roses on a post and lath framework, which helps to accentuate the form and fragrance of these attractive plants in the borders.
I usually prune back the growth by a third of their length after flowering (in July). Additional structural pruning takes place in winter to remove dead material and to generally clean up and reshape the shrub roses.
Chris Hitchcock (Head Gardener)