Curious about Cl. Sports of HT's & Floribundas

sara_ann-z6bokMarch 23, 2014

There are several hybrid teas and floribundas that have been around awhile that have climbing sports and I have always been a little curious if any of these are good growers? Some that I know about are Pink Peace, Peace, Tropicana, First Prize, Angel Face, Sunsprite, Miss All American Beauty, Queen Elizabeth, Blue Moon, Crimson Glory, Tiffany, Oklahoma, Chrysler Imperial, Fragrant Cloud, Mister Lincoln, Iceberg, Sonia and Paradise. It seems like I have read that a few of these do good as climbers. I was wondering about some of them, I'm not looking to find them, I think that there are plenty of other good climbers, just curious.

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A sport can vary greatly, depending upon how fully it has mutated, or it can rather stable and uniform. Reading old ARS reports, the climbing sports of famous HTs varied greatly in their vigor as well as their ability to repeat flower. If the climbing sport becomes sufficiently popular, eventually the entire industry picks up the best version of it and that becomes the standard. Initially, Cl. Iceberg was once flowering. One source discovered and isolated a repeat flowering plant which has become the one universally available.

Generally, Peace, Queen Elizabeth, Tiffany, Mr. Lincoln tend to be extremely large plants, often not repeating. Not always, but the reports of a tremendous amount of plant for relatively low amount of color are fairly common. Cl. Crimson Glory is often praised by those who grow it. I haven't. Cl Iceberg is a marvelous landscape rose anywhere the bush form excels for that purpose. Cl First Prize has been a decent repeat flowering plant here in the warmer areas of Southern California. It generally has a better health record than the bush, but still can suffer from mildew, rust and some black spot.

Much depends upon how suitable the original variety is for where it's grown. Historic reports show the climbing sports often have larger, better formed flowers, though not in every case. If the bush form isn't suitable, often the climbing sport isn't. Mrs. Sam McGredy is a horrible plant, very weak and rather unhealthy, with few, poorly shaped flowers. The climbing sport is once flowering in most cases, but when it flowers, they are spectacular. Cl. Orchid Masterpiece as a budded plant in my Newhall garden, grew to about four by four feet. Own root, it was much smaller. Budded, for Cliff Orent at EuroDesert, it as huge. The others you've listed, I have no first-hand experience with. Kim

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 11:45AM
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seil zone 6b MI

I've always heard that climbing sports of HTs are stingy bloomers. I had a climbing Peace that was THE stingiest bloomer ever. In 6 years it gave me ONE flower! However, my society president has a Cl. Peace and his blooms all summer long generously. So I think it can depend a lot on the plant itself and the conditions it's growing in.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 1:48PM
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Definitely on the individual plant and how happy it is. A mutation isn't always "on" or "off", but falls on a continuum where it may be more rampant with fewer to no flowers, to a more controlled growth with heavier flowering. It depends upon where the genetic combination in the material used for propagation fell as to what to expect from the plant. With some, that can vary greatly; with others, it can be fairly uniform. Cl. Iceberg is a good example of a fairly uniform type. Your Cl. Peace sounds like a good example of the former. Kim

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 3:40PM
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Thank you Kim and Seil.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 8:29PM
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Mendocino_Rose(z8 N CA.)

I'll just add that in a mild summer these climbers are far more likely to repeat bloom.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 10:38AM
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Fifteen, sixteen yrs ago when we still lived in the mobile home park, I remember my next-door neighbor's CL PEACE rose. It was a massive, monstrous thing that totally engulfed her front wooden fence. It would get the most beautiful spring flush of tons of huge gorgeous blooms, just totally covering the whole mass. Then it maybe got only a few random blooms later towards fall. That's when I realized climbing sports just don't repeat well.

I just dug up a climber I've had for several yrs. It was sold by Certified Roses as YELLOW BLAZE, but it's actually a sport of SUNFLARE. It would give me a beautiful spring flush of lovely yellow blooms, then the rest of the season it would grow like this big giant octopus, with huge canes sprawling all over the place and not blooming again til the next season. It was planted next to our driveway in a raised bed, and it would send those canes out almost into the path of the car. I decided to get rid of it and plant a HT there. Digging that thing out was no easy task. The main cane is over an inch in diameter. I'll be donating it to our local rose society!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 12:13PM
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Beth - Seems like I've heard that before about Peace. If a person had room it would almost be worth it to see all those gorgeous blooms early in the season. Although where I live I don't think it would get that huge. Sounds like you had quite a difficult job digging out your Sunflare!

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 8:02PM
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seil zone 6b MI

I've pretty much sworn off Cl. sports now. I find the ones that are actually bred as climbers give me much better repeat blooming. Dublin Bay was a faithful rebloomer and my Candy Land blooms it's fool head off all summer.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 10:35PM
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Seil - Since I haven't had experience with Cl. Sports I can't say for sure, but I've concluded you are probably right. I can certainly vouch for Dublin Bay, it is very dependable for me.

This post was edited by Sara-Ann on Thu, Mar 27, 14 at 7:31

    Bookmark   March 26, 2014 at 7:10AM
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richard(inland CA, 9a)

I've had a huge climbing Pink Peace on the back garden wall for 15 years. After the initial flush it produces some crazy long new branches during the summer, maybe 7 to 10 feet long. I've found that if I cut the tip, and tie down the end lower than the spot where it emerged from, it will flower like a pegged rose, all along the cane, a couple months later. This is in Bakersfield, where we have a very long growing season.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 10:01PM
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IMO, 'Peace, Cl.' is magnificent -- superior in every way to the bush form. I've always been mystified by the fact that the bush form was always a BS magnet in my garden, while its climbing sport remains healthy and largely disease free all season. I know a couple of other gardeners here in coastal Carolina who've made the same observation. It seems to me that when 'Peace' produced this sport, more was gained than simply a propensity to climb.

I was surprised (and envious) to read above about a 'Peace, Cl' that blooms prolifically all season long. My plant blooms heavily in the spring and (sometimes) throws a moderate number of blooms in early to mid autumn. The climbing form of 'Peace' is indeed a rampant grower -- which, I think, has contributed to its less than stellar reputation. Some gardeners try to keep it in bounds by pruning it heavily, then complain bitterly because it doesn't produce. 'Peace, Cl' blooms only on old wood. Prune it heavily and regularly and you're guaranteed a bloom-free plant. If you don't have room for a magnificent (albeit essentially once-blooming), very rampant climber, forget about 'Peace, Cl'.

Another climbing HT sport that I've been very impressed with is 'Gruss an Aachen, Cl'. Roses Unlimited is now the only U.S. source for that one.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 10:23PM
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