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Coral Dawn: how far from arbor and still climb 9' or so?

Posted by meredith_e 7B Piedmont NC (My Page) on
Sat, May 17, 14 at 15:37

Lots of questions today, lol. My new Coral Dawn from Heirloom looks lovely, and I'm so excited about her!

I have a gated arbor for her (to go on one side) that is about 9' tall at the top. I don't mind thorny or training (or pruning), but I don't know her growth habits. How far away should I plant her and have her growth definitely reach the top? She gets to run along a wall (6') that connects to the arbor, so half her growth will/can go away from the arbor, if that makes sense.

I usually plant too close!

Bonus points (lol) if you also know about CL Caroline Testout for the other side of the gate :D


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RE: Coral Dawn: how far from arbor and still climb 9' or so?

Any good guesses, maybe? :) I'm going to have to decide soon, so I'll have to pick a distance. I'm not getting the feeling she's a monster, maybe, so that's info in itself. Maybe I'll just plant her like a non-monster, normal climber? It's only the monsters I worry about :D


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RE: Coral Dawn: how far from arbor and still climb 9' or so?

  • Posted by vasue 7A Charlottesville (My Page) on
    Tue, May 20, 14 at 0:01

Okay, I'll give it a shot so you don't conclude you're talking to yourself...Always intrigued by descriptions & photos of this early 50's rose, found a grafted 2 gallon maybe 14 years ago at a nursery & scooped it up during a garden construction phase. (Mistake #1 - assume construction will go as planned & conclude as scheduled, followed by mistake #2 - collect plants in the interlude that will likely neither be planted nor potted on as anticipated due to mistake #1.) Repotted to a 5 gallon where it stayed for nearly a year. (Mistake #3 - neglect to routinely check root growth, leading to mistake #4 - confining a plant in an inadequate volume of soil.) Used to climbers that didn't grow much the first year, and lulled into complacency by its topside good health, didn't occur to me to check it's root growth till planting. Never seen such a case of thoroughly rootbound as that poor rose showed when slipped out of its pot. Did my best, (and the rose did too) from that point to make up for unintended neglect, but by the following Spring the scion perished & the rootstock ran rampant with glee, freed at last. Sadly, no actual growing experience with this rose besides committing root strangulation, perhaps I shouldn't be answering this at all!

However, at the time the dearly departed originally followed me home, I'd a good guess of the mature size possibilites. Anticipated a minimum height of 10' & a maximum double that at 20', with a breadth of 3-10'. Keep in mind I wasn't planning on training & controlling it in any ongoing manner once it got up and running, but rather thought to let it loose in a half-willdling manner. There's currently a "sidetable" beside the reading chair of stacked books on various subjects, along with others taken from the bookcase months ago still randomly piled. Checking Coral Dawn in these references (as we did pre-web), find a general concensus among the 5 authors represented of 10-12' average height, with Taylor hedging at 8-12' & Nisbet avowing he'd not seen one taller than 10' in New England (with no mention of cane hardiness or Winter dieback as considerations there). None comment on width. All say vigorous, with several adding upright, suitable for pillar or trellis. No index entries for this rose in the books past 1972 publishing dates, though I did see it online as Climbing Coral Dawn (is there a bush version?) & never looked for that variance. Many more volumes on hand that could be checked, but I'll go with that random sample. Checking online, find 12x4-8' fairly common, with Rogue Valley using Ashdown's info (they were in South Carolina while in business, as you may remember) of 15-20' high. Heirloom's listing 12-18x6'. You have spoken to Heirloom regarding Coral Dawn's possible eventual stature in your location, haven't you? Their educated guess would surely be worth more than my guestimate based on the experiences of others, who may themselves never have actually grown CD, depending in turn on secondhand info.

So my best guess is the 9' height of your arbor will present no vertical challenge to Coral Dawn & her controlled width will bulk to a minimum 2' on the arbor side. I'd plant the rose no closer than 2' to the support, probably more like 3-4', in case the rose decided to grow that 12'+ loaded, with a nice flowery edging below the rose & arbor. But then, I'd rather underestimate than be swamped by roses on either side eventually obscuring the passageway. Could always put a birdhouse atop the arch in the meantime. or suspend a hanging basket or light as spacefillers while the roses are growing up & out.

Sorry for the rambling, the pollen's got my thoughts as moving targets, challenging to coherently catch. My 2 cents worth is probably not worth a penny.

Does seem each plant's growth is highly site-specific, and we only find the answers to these questions through discovery.

This post was edited by vasue on Tue, May 20, 14 at 11:17


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RE: Coral Dawn: how far from arbor and still climb 9' or so?

  • Posted by vasue 7A Charlottesville (My Page) on
    Tue, May 20, 14 at 10:39

Now you've got me considering Coral Dawn again for this garden. Searched GW & found the linked thread. The member familiar with this rose, zjw, doesn't seem to have email enabled, but perhaps you could flag them down on the Antique Roses Forum. And wow! 5,000 roses on order from Vintage in 2012.

Here is a link that might be useful: Anyone grow climbing Coral Dawn...?


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RE: Coral Dawn: how far from arbor and still climb 9' or so?

I haven't yet grown Coral Dawn but I'll go for bonus point on Mme. Carolyn Testout. She's a moderate monster in my zone and like more so in yours, so plan accordingly. She is on one side of a maybe 8-9' arch here in zone 5, and most years she'll stretch fully across it to the other side. Even this year after being cut to the ground a few weeks ago, she's already 2 feet tall and climbing. The thing to watch is that she has very stiff canes quite quickly in her growth, so be sure to shape the canes horizontally as soon as possible before they harden up. She can put out monster thick canes when mature and they're a real bugger to try to bend at that point.

Hardiness isn't an issue for you, but in zone 5 she's a consistent trooper and one of the few that will reliably cover an arch in that color range.

Cynthia


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