QBARS - v14n2 An Honest Opinion of R. 'Elizabeth'

An Honest Opinion of R. 'Elizabeth'
by Chas. Ferroni, Mill Valley, Calif.

R. 'Elizabeth'
Fig. 16.  The planting of R. 'Elizabeth' in the
Society garden at Crystal Springs Island.
Cecil Smith photo

In the January issue of our Quarterly Bulletin, a fellow member has taken issue of this beautiful hybrid and I am compelled to come to its defense. The writer describes this outstanding variety as a "loose, floppy. dog-eared type," which is far from the truth. I have grown this variety from liner to maturity and find it entirely free of these undesirable qualities. In fact, a small plant supplied by a nurseryman about seven years ago has developed into a very compact plant with thick foliage that is erect and prominent, attaining a size of about 30" high and a spread of 42". It is now growing, to the admiration of all who see it in one of the most noted gardens in my area, its position being in front of a large bay window that extends from ceiling to near ground level. I doubt, very much, that there is another variety in its color range that would serve this purpose. The writer also comments on the "washed out blush pinks, ghost whites, pale lemon-yellows and the boudoir pastels." The trend in industry today is color, in which no two individuals have the same taste. Many are quite impartial to red, this color is most common in our backlog of planting. The enthused gardener is always shopping for plant material that fits his color scheme. This year color white is gaining in popularity. In my test garden, I am growing the majority of the Dutch and English hybrids available. While the work of the Dutch hybridists should receive honorable mention, the time, effort, patience and investment of our gentlemen gardeners of Great Britain should be congratulated for their achievement. We hope they do not vanish from the scene.