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Rose Articles

Let Roses take the place of Easter Lilies

by Terri Clark

As someone who seems honour-bound to tradition, you might find it curious that, as one decade gives way to the next, I find that a general “stir-up” on occasion to be just what the doctor ordered.

Since childhood, the anticipation of the Easter holiday did not only include the excitement of annual delectable culinary treats like hot cross buns and the best of baked hams, but also the delivery of flowers cut and potted. Hailing from a small hamlet just north of New York City, the one luxury our village had was a first-rate nursery that served the surrounding county. The sighting of the Petersen Nursery truck climbing our driveway in late March or April inevitably meant bouquets of Easter lilies and pots of fragrant hyacinths destined for our mother. Her city-slicker sister was extravagant when sending flowers to her “country mouse” sibling who was mother to seven active children.

The arrival of such flowers brings a scent like no other but too briefly enjoyed and usually gone within the week. Over the last few years I have altered my special seasonal gift-giving to include something that given today will bloom later - there is a great deal to be said for anticipation!

This year I am making a list of fabulous roses that will make excellent Easter gifts for those friends and family members who have taken on the role of hosting the fabulous feast that follows this most hopeful of religious holidays.

Rosa Sally Holmes
  • Royal Sunset: A big salmony climber with an equally powerful scent. Great for a south-facing garage wall.
  • Abraham Darby: Technically a shrub but can be a climber with my favourite peachy-yellow apricot blooms.
  • Sally Holmes: Big 4” single white blooms with stunning yellow stamens.
  • Crown Princess Margareta: Clusters of salmon-coloured flowers with a super fragrance.
  • St. Patrick: You don’t have to be Irish to love this Hybrid Tea rose. Great for exhibition blooms of a buttery-yellow.
  • Cecil Brunner: Baby pink, perfectly formed Rose buds on a bush that can climb 20’-30’.
Rose Fred Loads
  • Happy Chappy: A small shrub rose that stays low and bushy with single orange/pink/coppery - with a tinge of purple to the flowers.
  • Fred Loads: In years gone by, this was a fail-proof starter rose suggested by the venerable Vancouver Rose Society. Its bright vermilion-orange, almost single. blooms are a stunner every time, setting off an upright modern shrub rose bush, fragrant to boot. I make this suggestion with fond memories of Mark, Denis and Erskine, past Vancouver Rose Society members all, whose generosity of spirit and numerous rose cuttings helped start my very own rose garden over two decades ago.

If you have trouble locating any of these roses at your local nursery, remember to check with Select Roses and Southlands Nursery or the Vancouver Rose Society. A wonderful selection of roses will be on sale at the VRS booth at the World Rose Festival in the new Vancouver Convention Centre, June 19-21, 2009.

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