Looking for a REALLY fragrant rose

thedogsLL(6B)December 15, 2013

Hi, All. I'm a bit of a newbie to roses, having spent many years buying from big box stores, and replacing roses on a fairly regular basis. For the last 1-2 years, I've been focusing on compost and mulch to improve the soil in my beds, and have found that all of my plants have improved as a result. I am now replanting a bed that is about 10' long and 2-3' wide across the front of my house.
I put in an Austin Crown Princess Margareta in the early summer this year, and it seems to be doing well - I'm looking forward to the spring when I hope it will really take off!
I also have a lavender Hybrid Tea rose that is slowly fading away. It was given to me as a gift, and I have no idea what it's name or origin is, although I suspect a Home Depot bulk buy. I will, I think, need to replace it in the spring, and am wondering if anyone here has any experience with fragrant roses for zone 6. The spot gets about 3 hours of early morning sun, and 2-3 hours of early afternoon sun from the opposite side. It would be all day sun, except for a rather large maple tree between my small front yard and the street.
I'm not particular about color, but if I can find a healthier, better lavender, that would be awesome!

LynnT (the LL in thedogsLL is LandLady - seems like my main job is to take care of the dogs...LOL!)

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donaldvancouver(cool wet z8)

Sweetness is a beautiful lavender and amazingly fragrant. But it suffers pretty badly from black spot here. Poseidon is supposed to be very healthy for a lavender, but not fragrant. I guess you can't have everything.
For pure beautiful scent, you can't beat Felicite Parmentier, a once-blooming pink-blush Alba.
You might look at Beverly, a pink hybrid tea from Kordes. She's very healthy and the fragrance is out of this world.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 12:13AM
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nanadollZ7 SWIdaho(Zone 7 Boise SW Idaho)

Until 2 or 3 years ago, this area was a zone 6. All my Austin roses were perfectly hardy here, and all of them had lovely scent. One of the best smelling is Evelyn, a peachy color. Another, Munstead Wood is a gorgeous dark red with some purple tones and a great scent, too. Another favorite, highly scented rose, is Frederic Mistral, though this rose might grow too large for you. It's a light pink in almost constant bloom. The list is endless. Of my lavenders, one is highly scented (Angel Face), but probably wouldn't be healthy, as far as fungal diseases in your location, another Blue Bayou is apparently hard to find. I like Blueberry Hill, but it is scentless to me. You might check out Love Song a new lavender that is generating positive comment. There are some nicely smelling purples, too, like Ebb Tide. I should mention that I had Sweetness a few years back, and it did not thrive or bloom well in my garden, so it's no longer here. I would really investigate Sweetness before trying this one. Diane

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 1:25AM
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cecily(7 VA)

Hi Lynn, welcome to the Rose Forum. Where do you lIve? If you're in northern CA or the pacific northwest, you could grow a healthy lavendar hybrid tea. In other parts of the country you would need to spray bi-weekly with a fungicide to keep it healthy (or it will decline from blackspot disease as your current rose is doing).

Frederic Mistral and Westerland are both strongly scented (the sort of fragrance that wafts across the yard). Both are large bushes with better than average blackspot resistance.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 7:49AM
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mad_gallica(zone 5 - eastern New York)

The shade is going to be an issue. My guess is that the current rose is having most of its problems because it isn't getting enough sun. So changing it out for another rose that isn't going to get enough sun isn't really going to help. The truly shade tolerant roses tend to be close to species rose, and get big. If that is an OK look, I'd start with R. eglanteria - a big rose with amazingly smelly foliage. If it isn't OK, then maybe a hydrangea or fothergilla.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 7:50AM
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If you're hunting for a rose that can take some shade, is disease free and smells fantastic, take a look at some of the early Rugosa's. Plus in the late fall/early winter, the foliage turns yellows and oranges with big red hips. I'm mostly a Modern Rose type of gardener but I'm hooked on these early Rugosa's.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 11:36AM
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Memorial Day is REALLY very fragrant. People do have some issues with it. We lost ours to an exceptionally cold winter (or late frost, can't remember), but I think it would be worth a shot. I think it can withstand some shade. Julia Child is very fragrant, also.

Even shade tolerant ones will be a bit less floriferous and also taller as they reach for the light and no rose can compete with tree roots, especially those of a maple.

Among the older roses, all of which have smaller, but more abundant flowers, Rose de Rescht (cerise) and Yvonne Rabier (white) come to mind. Marie Pavie is similar, as is Katherina Zeimet, which is a bit taller, with starry clusters of shiny white flowers, against dark leaves -- I love this one. Sweet Chariot, is a superb trailing dark lavender. All of these are quite fragrant, if you bend down and sniff.

Coquette des Blanches, a bourbon, makes a taller bush and has a wonderful fragrance. You can use google to find pictures of all of these.

Here is a link that might be useful: Katharina Zeimet on HMF

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 3:56PM
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Wow! You've amazed me! Thank you all for your responses, and I will check them all out.I promise! I'm not sure which one of you to respond to first, so I'll just wing it. :)
I thought the zone would be what you needed, but it seems there is more to roses than I know so far. So, more info-
I'm in New England, just a little north of Boston. I've struggled with BS in the back yard (more than one maple tree, and I've given up on roses back there, in spite of how much I would love to see roses from my patio). I know roses, or some rose, can do well in the front, in spite of the maple tree. I don't think the roots are a problem because, like a lot of city trees, it's planted between the sidewalk and curb, not really a part of the front yard. We get plenty of sun in early spring, but when it leafs out, it blocks direct sun. Dappled, yes, and there is my hope for the right rose for that spot.

    Bookmark   December 16, 2013 at 7:54PM
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When I went back through all of your suggestions, to write down the names so I could spend some time looking at all of them, I realized, Cecily, that I missed your comment about BS.
The lavender never had BS, or any other disease that I am aware of. It just shrunk. I planted it about 7 years ago, I think, may be off a year one way or the other, and it did well for the first few years. (I used Miracle Grow on everything back then, and their rose food on the roses.) Then it only put out 5 or 6 blooms one year, the next year there were only two canes and 4 blooms, and the next year only one cane and two flowers. That's the year I started adding mulch, natural fertilizer and compost (not necessarily in that order), all learned from Paul Zimmerman's forum. Last spring, it looked better and gave me 3 blooms on 1 and 1/2 canes. I say 1/2 because it only grew to about 18" long with one flower. I won't know for sure till spring if that means it's coming back or if that was it's last gasp.
I agree the maple getting so big is it's downfall, so I'll be looking for a rose that is also shade tolerant to some degree. That's why the Crown Princess. She replaced a rose of no name that I lost to rust and Japanese Beetles.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2013 at 7:16PM
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seil zone 6b MI

Not only is it not getting enough sunlight but it's competing with the maple tree's roots for water and nutrients. Move it to a better spot and I'll bet it comes back for you!

For the strongest scent the OGRs are probably the best. The Austin's are good too. For modern roses it's hit or miss. But in all roses fragrance is very subjective. What I think smells divine you may not care for or may not smell at all for you. If you can try and visit some local public rose gardens and see and smell them for yourself. That's also a good way to see what will grow well in your area. Or contact your local rose society. I'm sure a lot of the members would be thrilled to show off their gardens for you!

    Bookmark   December 17, 2013 at 7:27PM
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alameda/zone 8

This year, I got interested in acquiring some of the older, really fragrant roses. Got Fragrant Cloud - its scent is wonderful! The McCartney Rose is excellent, as is Tiffany. Alec's Red, Crimson Glory and Chrysler Imperial are fragrant reds, as is Mr. Lincoln - but haven't grown him in awhile, he gets quite tall. I don't find the newer hybrid teas have the rich scent the older ones do and am enjoying growing them.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2013 at 8:46PM
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ratdogheads(5b NH)

Your Crown Princess is going to get big. So maybe look for some smaller companions. I've seen it growing locally and it reminds me of my sprawling Graham Thomas, which quickly outgrew the bed in front of my house. You mention your bed is 2-3' deep, so I'd be leary of many Austins and OGRs.

I love purples contrasted yellow/apricots. If you'd consider a darker purple, the floribunda Intrigue has an amazing fragrance. Sadly I lost mine to an ice storm (not a hardiness issue - it just broke) but for the two seasons that I had it, it did pretty well with just morning sun.

I highly recommend Uncanoonuc Mountain Perennials in Goffstown, NH. It's worth the road trip. They specialize in hardy varieties and they have a wonderful display garden. Last year they were selling the lavender floribunda Love Song, which was gorgeous, though I can't say if it's fragrant. They also had Rose de Rescht, Marie Pavie & Sweet Chariot, mentioned above, as well as Gruss an Aachen, which reportedly can handle some shade.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2013 at 9:01PM
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I have two David Austin roses growing in the dappled shade of a large crabapple. Sharifa Asma is truely stunning with such a strong pure rose scent. William Shakespeare in smaller in stature but just as impressive in looks and smell. Nothing else that I grow even comes close. Shakespeare has never had BS, Asma gets it, but not as bad as some of my others. Both do very well in N. Wisc.

    Bookmark   December 18, 2013 at 12:22AM
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titian1 10b

Try (if you haven't already) putting in your wants in an advanced search on HMF. You have to be a full member to do this, but I think it's worth it
I tried a search for zone 6a, and it came back with 8 pages of very fragrant, vigorous and shade tolerant roses. Of course, there;ll be a lot of doubling up, as the same rose is often known by several different names.

    Bookmark   December 18, 2013 at 4:37PM
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Just a note that might help - tar spot on maples and black spot on roses are two different beasts (R. acerinum vs. D. rosae). As far as I know, they don't cross-infect. I have roses in my backyard, in the vicinity of a large maple that is always affected, and they do fine. I've also used the maple leaves for winter protection without any ill effects and know others that do the same (some actively compost them). So perhaps you could have that patio view after all?

    Bookmark   December 18, 2013 at 5:33PM
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Titian1, I have been dithering about the membership fee on HMF, but with your comment, I've decided it's worth it to see if it helps. There are just SO many roses, it's really hard to pick just one or two, and I think I really only have room for one! I ordered Austin's catalog and there's this sort of workbook in it that helped me pick the princess.

Redwolfdoc, I wonder about the maple. Just how far do the roots grow??? Okay, there's something else to research while I wait for winter in New England to go away! It's actually close to 15' away from the bed I'm planting. I also winter mulch with shredded maple leaves, with no problem. I think, don't know, but think the real problem is not choosing the right rose for the spot until recently. I have had too many people giving me roses with no names but red, white, yellow....I'm trying to get smarter about choosing, planting, feeding.

    Bookmark   December 18, 2013 at 8:08PM
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cecily(7 VA)

Have you considered planting the rose in a large pot and sinking the pot into the planting bed? That keeps the maple roots away from the rose. But it has to be a very large pot -- like a half whiskey barrel. Some rosarians do this quite successfully.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2013 at 7:37AM
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That's an interesting thought. No, it never occurred to me. But if maple tree roots grow that far out, it sounds like something worth checking out. I actually have two half barrels in the back, one of which lost it's metal bands last spring. I have a hosta in it (there's a matched pair), and found some hemp rope last year to hold it together. I was working crazy hours and just didn't have time to replant into a new barrel. If I buried that, the soil should support it even when the hemp decays, I'd think. But what happens when the wood does decay? I know it'll take a long time - it's almost an inch thick, but roses live a long time too. At least, they do when it's done right. :0
But that also brings the question of the Crown Princess. Should she go in protection too? I'd think if she gets as big as predicted, her roots will need more room than even a half barrel? I had planned to add a trellis next spring, close to the house, so there's something for her to grow on.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2013 at 7:37PM
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mad_gallica(zone 5 - eastern New York)

If there are any openings in the container, the maple roots will come through them. If there aren't, the rose will drown. Containers can help a plant get established under a large, aggressive tree, but aren't really a long term solution.

Getting the right roses is an enormous step forward in being successful. However, very few people from outside of the local conditions have the foggiest idea of *what* the right roses might be. Somebody from Phoenix, for example, is going to have a drastically different take on shade tolerance.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2013 at 8:48PM
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