Knock Out (for newbies)
There was a question asked in the Tom Carruth thread about Knock Out, so I thought I would start a separate thread.
Knock Out is a variety of rose (class "Shrub") hybridized by Bill Radler (registration name: RADrazz). The rose is marketed by Star Roses. Over the years, there have been two sports or mutations of the original Knock Out found, called Pink Knock Out and Blushing Knock Out. Radler has also hybridized Double Knock Out, Pink Double Knock Out, Rainbow Knock Out, Sunny Knock Out. Star Roses markets them together, and you may see them in special pots marked "The Knock Out Rose". They have been disease resistant for most of the continental US, make a nice hedge (when mature) and are relatively easy to care for. Some people don't like them because "they don't look like a rose". Knock Out and Double Knock Out are being used heavily by landscapers these days.
There have been problems reported (unknown fungal diseases, plants dying for no identifiable reason). For me, if someone come to me and says "I can't grow roses", I recommend one of the Knock Out series or Home Run. If they are willing to wait and order bareroots in the fall, I recommend the "Fairy Tale" series from Kordes.
Local garden centers have been taken over by Knock Out, driven, IMHO, by the strength of marketing efforts. Sales have been successful for these businesses, and as long as there is demand, their presence will remain. There are other disease resistant roses out there, but folks have to be willing to do research and look for them. In this area people want Knock Out, R. rugosa (lots of beach areas) and hybrid teas.
I don't hate Knock Out ('cause I appreciate all roses), I just don't like the color (not big on red of any shape or form). I like Blushing Knock Out, it makes a nice color accent at one corner of my house (it is in back of Caramel Fairy Tale). Photos tomorrow.
Here is a link that might be useful: Roses Hybridized by Bill Radler at helpmefind.com