Plant Guide

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Flower display

rosa-the-fairy

Rosa 'The Fairy'

Compact Polyantha rose with arching branches and glossy mid-green foliage, flowering continuously throughout the season from spring to late autumn. Shell-pink to candy-floss pink flowers, about 2.5 cm across, are produced in large clusters, usually covering most of the shrub.

Registration name: Rosa 'The Fairy'. Bred by Bentall in 1932 (UK) from a cross between Rosa 'Paul Crampel' and Rosa 'Lady Gay'. Introduced to the USA in 1941.

Flowers best in a sunny position, but can stand a considerable amount of shade. Suitable for any soil type as long as it is well-draining. Fertilise in early spring, and again in early summer. Remove clusters of spent flowers throughout the season. Prune in winter. Excellent disease resistance.

If you prefer fragrance, then Rosa 'The Fairy' is not for you. If you like an easy-care, healthy, and tough rose that reliably produces an abundance of flowers over a very long time with minimal gardener's input, then look no further! Flowers last well on water. Just watch out for the many thorns when you pick them. This is also one of the best roses for those not so sunny spots in the garden, where you would like some colour. Suitable for containers. Looks beautiful in combination with blue-flowering plants such as Ageratum houstonianum.

rosa-the-lady

Rosa 'The Lady'

Hybrid tea rose with dark green foliage, flowering in flushes throughout the season. Mildly fragrant double flowers, 7-10 cm across. Soft yellow-cream flower colour, flushed with salmon pink.

Registration name: Rosa 'FRYjingo'. Bred by Gareth Fryer (UK, 1985) from a cross between Rosa 'Pink Parfait' and Rosa 'Redgold'. Named after Britain's oldest women's weekly magazine 'The Lady' (in publication since 1885).

Prefers a position in full sun and any well-draining soil with a generous amount of organic matter. Fertilise in early spring and again in early summer. Dead-head during the flowering season and prune in winter. Good disease resistance.

Stunning rose with classically shaped flowers in lovely pastel shades. Plant as a single specimen or in groups for flower display in beds and borders. Good for cutting.

rosa-the-mccartney-rose

Rosa 'The McCartney Rose'

Repeat-flowering hybrid tea rose with large, fragrant flowers and glossy dark green foliage right down to the ground. The pink flowers are semi-double, 7-10 cm wide, dark rosy pink in bud. Hips are not particularly ornamental.

Registered name: Rosa 'MEIzeli', bred by Meilland International in France. Offered to Sir Paul McCartney as a birthday gift from his record company. Also sold as Rosa 'Sweet Lady' or Rosa 'Paul McCartney'.

Tolerates light shade, but plant in full sun for best flowering and disease resistance. Can be grown in any soil that is well-draining and contains a generous amount of organic matter. Responds well to rose fertiliser. Quite susceptible to a number of pests and diseases, including black spot, so will need excellent growing conditions, and may need spraying.  Dead-head during the flowering season, and prune in winter.

Lovely rose for flower display, fragrance and cutting. Could also be grown as an informal hedge.

rosa-tintinara

Rosa 'Tintinara'

Vigorous hybrid tea rose with glossy, mid green foliage. Repeat flowering throughout the season with bright orange to coral red, mildly scented flowers, 8-13 cm wide.

Registration name: Rosa 'DICuptight'. Bred by Colin Dickson (UK). 

Prefers a position in full sun and any well-draining soil with a generous amount of organic matter. Fertilise in early spring and again in early summer. Dead-head during the flowering season and prune in winter.

Fabulous colour and a strong grower. Looks great in flower borders, either as a single specimen or in groups. Rosa 'Tintinara' can become quite tall, so plant towards the back with lower growing plants in front. (The shrub used for the photograph carried lots of flowers and had reached a height of about 1.6 m). Imagine this in combination with blue-flowering plants such as Agapanthus and Ageratum houstonianum. Ideal for cutting.

rosa-topsy-turvy

Rosa 'Topsy Turvy'

Floribunda rose with deep green leaves down to the ground, flowering throughout the season with mildly fragrant, bi-coloured flowers. Dark red young foliage. Bright scarlet-red, semi-double flowers with a white reverse, 10 cm across. They open in an unusual pinwheel fashion. 

Registration name: Rosa 'WEKcocbeb'. Bred by Tom Carruth (USA) from a cross between Rosa 'Countess Celeste' and Rosa 'Betty Boop'.

Prefers a position in full sun and any well-draining soil with a generous amount of organic matter. Fertilise in early spring, and again in early summer. Dead-head during the flowering season. Prune in winter. Good disease resistance.

Striking rose with an informal, 'happy' appearance. Can be grown as a standard or a bush, in groups or as a single specimen in beds and borders. Good for cutting.

rosa-tropical-skies

Rosa 'Tropical Skies'

Medium to tall hybrid tea rose, repeat-flowering with large, mildly fragrant blooms and glossy, mid to dark green foliage. Perfectly shaped flowers in a brilliant blend of yellow, red, and pink.

Registration name: Rosa INTerdays. Bred by G. Peter Ilsink (The Netherlands).

Prefers a sunny position in any well-draining soil with a generous amount of organic matter. Fertilise in early spring, and again in early summer. Dead-head during the flowering season, and prune in winter. Good disease resistance.

Beautifully formed flowers in bright and cheery colours on a strong upright growing plant. Suitable for cutting and for  flower display in beds and borders as a single specimen or in groups. 

rosa-valencia

Rosa 'Valencia'

Hybrid tea rose with a bushy upright habit, glossy dark green foliage, and flowering in flushes throughout the season. Fragrant flowers, about 9-12 cm across, mostly solitary, in creamy apricot and old gold colours.

Registration name: Rosa 'KOReklia'. Bred by W. Kordes & Sons (Germany, 1989). Also known as Rosa 'New Valencia'.

Prefers a sunny position in any well-drained soil with a generous amount of organic matter. Fertilise in early spring and again in early summer. Dead-head during the flowering season and prune in winter. Very disease resistant.

Exquisitely shaped flowers in an attractive blend of peach, apricot, cream and copper. Excellent choice for flower display in beds or borders, as a single specimen or in groups. Combine with blue or pale purple flowering plants. Superb cut flower with strong straight stems.

rosa-veilchenblau

Rosa 'Veilchenblau'

Vigorous, thorn-less (or nearly so), rambling rose with glossy, mid-green foliage. Once-flowering for about three to four weeks in spring with large clusters of relatively small purple-violet flowers with white stripes and blotches, a white center, and yellow stamens. The flower colour fades with age, in particular in hot, sunny conditions. The flowers are followed by small (0.5-1 cm long) brownish red hips.

Bred in Germany by Hermann Kiese, and introduced in 1909 by Johann Christoph Schmidt. Also known as Rosa 'Bleu-Violet', R. 'Blue Rambler', R. 'Blue Rosalie', and R. 'Violet Blue'.

Tolerates quite a bit of shade,  heat, and poor soils. Prefers a position in well-draining soil where it is protected from the hot midday sun. Susceptible to mildew, so best grown in a position with sufficient air movement. Apply rose fertiliser in early spring. Prune in winter.

A rose for the larger garden! The colour is particularly attractive in a partially shaded position. I could not detect any scent, but according to some sources Rosa 'Veilchenblau' has an attractive fragrance.

rosa-waimarie

Rosa 'Waimarie'

Hybrid tea rose, flowering in flushes throughout the season with large semi-rosette shaped flowers and mid to dark green foliage. Stems and young leaves flushed with dark red. Fragrant, mauve pink flowers. 

Registration name: Rosa 'MATtwai'. Bred by Bob Matthews (New Zealand). Named after a restored paddle steamer in Wanganui (New Zealand).

Prefers a sunny position in any well-draining soil. Fertilise in early spring and again in early summer. Dead-head during the flowering season and prune in winter. Good disease resistance.

Lovely full blooms with a wonderful fragrance. Can be grown as a standard or shrub in beds and borders. Excellent cut flower.

rosa-wise-woman

Rosa 'Wise Woman'

Hybrid tea rose with glossy mid green foliage and double baby pink flowers emerging from darker pink flower buds. Mild fragrance.

Registration name: Rosa 'MATtwom'. Bred by Bob Matthews (New Zealand). Named to commemorate the centenary of midwifery.

Plant in full or partial sun, in any well-draining soil with a generous amount of organic matter. Fertilise in early spring and again in early summer. Dead-head during the flowering season and prune in winter. Good disease resistance.

Strong and healthy rose with pretty pink flowers for beds or borders, as a single specimen or in groups. Can be grown as a standard or a bush rose. Good for picking.

rosa-gallica-versicolor

Rosa gallica 'Versicolor'

One of the best known old garden roses (unknown breeder, 1500s or earlier). Matte green foliage. Flowering for about three weeks in late spring or early summer with fragrant, semi-double, pale pink flowers with fuchsia-pink stripes. The flowers are semi-double with a diameter of about 7 cm.

Also known as Rosa gallica var. officinalis 'Versicolor', Rosa gallica var. versicolor, Rosa gallica var. variegata, Rosa gallica 'Variegata', and Rosa mundi.

Prefers a sunny position in any well-draining soil that contains a generous amount of organic material Fertilise in early spring and again in early summer. Good disease resistance, but may get aphids. Prune after flowering.

Delightful shrub rose with striking, moderately scented flowers. Great for a sunny border, on its own, in groups, or as an informal hedge.

salvia-amistad

Salvia 'Amistad'

friendship sage

Bushy perennial with bright green, 'corrugated', aromatic leaves and royal purple flowers with black calyces. Flowers nearly all year round. Attracts bees and hummingbirds.

Prefers a sheltered position in full sun and well-draining soil. Usually trouble-free, but may get damaged by slugs and snails. Deer-resistant. Very easy to propagate from cuttings. Tolerates moderate frosts (to about -8 deg Celsius). Protect during colder temperatures or grow in containers and move indoors for the winter. Remove spent flower-spikes to prolong flowering (this also helps to keep the pant compact).

Stunning Salvia for a spot in the middle or back of the flower border. The flower-colour is absolutely beautiful. The plant can get quite open, so every now and again I prune mine (i.e. I remove spent flower-spikes with a relatively long stem and cut it just above a point where new side-shoots are emerging.)

salvia-elegans

Salvia elegans

pineapple sage

Herbaceous perennial or evergreen sub-shrub in the Lamiaceae family, native to Mexico and Guatemala. Light to mid green, soft downy, toothed leaves, arranged in pairs, with a stong pineapple scent. Four-angled stems, often becoming woody at their base. Spikes to about 20 cm long, with whorls of bright scarlet red, tubular flowers 3 to 5 cm long, during late summer and autumn. Attracts hummingbirds and butterflies. Flowers and leaves are edible, and are used for example in fruit salads and drinks.

Prefers a sheltered position in full sun and well-draining soil. Leaves may droop during dry periods, but the plant is reasonably drought-hardy and will usually recover after watering. Tolerates poor soils, partial shade, and moderate frosts (USDA zones 8-10). May require staking in exposed areas. Cut back to near ground level after flowering, and bring indoors to overwinter in cold climates, or, in warmer regions, wait for it to come back in spring. In frost-free zones, or areas with light to moderate frosts, you can treat this  as an evergreen shrub, pruning in winter to maintain a well-shaped, compact plant. 

Salvia elegans is a fast-growing plant with a brilliant flower colour and fresh green leaves. Great addition to herb gardens, but will quickly grow into quite a tall shrub, so plant behind smaller growing herbs. In flower borders, combine this with other bright colours, such as warm oranges, yellows and reds to create a dramatic scene of hot colours. In combination with plants that have bold flower shapes such as dahlias, sunflowers, and Echinacea, Salvia elegans flowers add a touch of daintiness.

salvia-farinacea

Salvia farinacea

mealy sage, mealy cup sage

Herbaceous perennial, native to Mexico and parts of the USA, flowering profusely during summer and autumn. Erect, four-angled stems. Ovate to lance-shaped, mid to grey green leaves with entire or lobed margins. Two-lipped, five-lobed, blue flowers tightly packed in spikes. The common name refers to the powdery white felt on the stems and the calyx of the flowers. Attracts butterflies and hummingbirds. Several cultivars available in shades of blue, purple, and white.

Prefers a position in full sun or part shade and any well-drained soil. Tolerates poor soils. Indoors it likes good light, but some protection from full sun during the hottest part of the day. Reasonably drought tolerant. May become leggy in wet soils. Cut back after flowering. Tolerates light frosts, and is often grown as an annual in cooler climates. Generally trouble-free, but is susceptible to downy and powdery mildew.

Salvia farinacea looks spectacular when planted in groups against a contrasting background. You can create striking colour combinations with yellow or orange flowering plants, or a more traditional look with pinks and whites. Taller cultivars are suitable for cutting and can also be dried.

Salvia leucantha

Salvia leucantha

Mexican bush sage; velvet sage

Shrub white, woolly stems and narrow, dull green, wrinkled leaves. Very free-flowering with spikes of violet purple flowers during summer and autumn. Cut back to near ground level in winter to keep the plant bushy. Native to Mexico and tropical America.