Page images

ere now, would have discovered its habitats: I cannot help, therefore, suggesting, that to the gardens of the east of Europe we must look for the origin of this rose; and to the Single Yellow Austrian Briar (Rosa lutea), as its parent; though that, in a state of nature, seldom if ever bears seed, yet, as I have proved, it will if its flowers are fertilised. I do not suppose that the gardeners of the East knew of this, now common, operation; but it probably was done by some accidental juxta-position, and thus, by mere chance, one of the most remarkable and beautiful of roses was originated. From its foliage having acquired a glaucous pubescence, and its shoots a greenish yellow tinge, in those respects much unlike the Austrian Briar, I have sometimes been inclined to impute its origin to that rose, fertilised with a double or semi-double variety of the Damask Rose, for that is also an eastern plant.

As yet, we have but two roses in this division; the Double Yellow, or "Yellow Provence," with large globular and very double bright yellow flowers, and the Pompone Jaune, or dwarf Double Yellow, both excessively shy of producing full-blown flowers; though they grow in any moderately good soil with great luxuriance, and show an abundance of flowerbuds; but some "worm i' the bud❞ generally causes them to fall off prematurely. To remedy

this, various situations have been recommended: some have said, plant it against a south wall; others, give it a northern aspect, under the drip of some water-trough, as it requires a wet situation. All this is quackery and nonsense. The Yellow Provence Rose is a native of a warm climate, and therefore requires a warm situation, a free and airy exposure, and rich soil.

At Burleigh, the seat of the Marquis of Exeter, the effect of situation on this rose is forcibly shown. A very old plant is growing against the southern wall of the mansion, in a confined situation, its roots cramped by a stone pavement; it is weakly, and never shows a flower-bud. In the entrance court is another plant, growing in front of a low parapet wall, in a good loamy soil and free airy exposure; this is in a state of the greatest luxuriance, and blooms in fine perfection nearly every season.

Mr. Mackintosh, the gardener, who kindly pointed out these plants to me, thought the latter a distinct and superior variety, as it was brought from France by a French cook, a few years since; but it is certainly nothing but the genuine old Double Yellow Rose.

In unfavourable soils it will often flourish and bloom freely, if budded on the Musk Rose, the Common China Rose, or the Blush Boursault; but the following pretty method of cul

ture, I beg to suggest, though I must confess I have not yet tried it :-Bud or graft it on some short stems of the Dog Rose; in the autumn, pot some of the strongest plants, and, late in spring, force them with a gentle heat, giving plenty of air. By this method the dry and warm climate of Florence and Genoa may, perhaps, be partially imitated; for there it blooms in such profusion, that large quantities of its magnificent flowers are daily sold in the markets during the rose season.




It is the opinion of some cultivators, that the varieties of the Ayrshire Rose have been originated from the Rosa arvensis, or creeping single White Rose of our woods and hedges. But this is contradicted by botanists, who assert, that the original Ayrshire Rose was raised in Scotland from foreign rose seed: it may have been; but to judge from its habit, I feel no hesitation in asserting, that it is merely a seedling hybrid from our Rosa arvensis, having acquired much additional vigour, as all hybrid roses nearly invariably do, from some accidental impregnation: perhaps no rose can be more

luxuriant than this; for the Single Ayrshire, and that semi-double variety, known as the Double White, will often make shoots in one season, twenty to thirty feet in length. Several of our prettiest varieties have been raised from seed by Mr. Martin, of Rose Angle, Dundee ; but the first in the Catalogue, the Ayrshire Queen, the only dark Ayrshire Rose known, was originated by myself in 1835, from the Blush Ayrshire, impregnated with the Tuscany Rose. But one seed germinated, and the plant produced has proved a complete hybrid. Its flowers are of the same shape, and not more double than those of the Blush Ayrshire, its female parent; but they have all the dark purplish crimson of the Tuscany Rose. It has lost a portion of the vigorous climbing habit of the Ayrshire, but yet makes an excellent pillar rose. Till we can get a dark Ayrshire Rose, double as a Ranunculus, it will be acceptable. The Double Blush, or Double Red of some catalogues, is a pretty early rose, a vigorous climber, and as a standard forms a beautiful umbrella-shaped tree. Bennet's Seedling * is a new variety found growing among some briars, by a gardener, of the name of Bennet, in Nottinghamshire. It is said to be a very pretty double and fragrant rose. Dundee Rambler is the most double, and one of

• Rosa Thoresbyana of the Floricultural Cabinet.

the best in this division; it blooms in very large clusters, much in the Noisette fashion, and is truly a desirable rose. Elegans, or the Double White, is one of our oldest varieties; its flowers are semi-double, and, individually, not pretty, as their petals in hot weather are very flaccid; but then it blooms in such large clusters, and grows so vigorously, that it forms an admirable Wilderness Rose. Jessica is a pretty, delicate pink variety, distinct and good. Rose Angle Blush is like Jessica in its colour, but is much more luxuriant in its habit. I am sure that this rose in strong soils will make shoots in one season more than twenty feet in length.

Lovely Rambler, or the Crimson Ayrshire, is too semi-double, and its petals too flaccid, to be much esteemed; it is mentioned here to prevent its two imposing names from misleading the amateur. Myrrh-scented: this name has been applied to two or three roses having the same peculiar scent; this variety has semidouble flowers of a creamy blush. Queen of the Belgians is a fine rose, with very double flowers, of a pure white; this is a most vigorous climber, soon forming a pillar fifteen or twenty feet high. Ruga is now a well-known variety, said to be a hybrid, between the Tea-scented China Rose, and the common Ayrshire; it is a most beautiful and fragrant rose.


« PreviousContinue »