How dare I opine on my two favorite roses? After all, the rose “community” has a level of intellectual fetishism on par with other obsessions like baseball statistics and jam band tape archiving. I’m too much of a generalist to be trusted in the rose world. But I can’t resist.
But let me first, commit rose apostasy. I hate bush roses. Rose leaves, in my opinion, are ugly. When a rose bush is not in bloom I think that the leaves and stems don’t hold much visual interest. There are many other flowering shrubs that are visually interesting year round. But I make an exception for climbing roses. And I like the smell and symbolism of the rose.
Several years ago, when it came to planting two roses to cover the entrance arbor to our house I chose two common varieties that I thought could tolerate our horrible soil and dry conditions:
This stunning, deep red climbing rose was developed by Michele Malandrone and first sold in 1958. It has an intense, complex scent. I chose it because I heard that it was drought tolerant. It’s also easy to find.
Iceberg Climbing Rose
I refer to this rose as the “gas station rose” for its ubiquity. Frankly, it’s an unimaginative choice but the thing is as tough as nails. It laughs at bad soil and low water. The only downside is that, like most climbing roses, it has absolutely no scent at all.
Do you have a favorite climbing rose? Leave a comment!