Imagens das páginas
PDF

this is attended to. The great objection to this summer surface-manuring, with English gardeners, is its unsightly appearance, particularly round trees on well-dressed lawns; this may be soon obviated, by covering the manure with some green moss; and to keep the birds from disturbing it, which they will do after worms, place on the moss some pieces of rock, or flints, thus forming an ornamental mound. In France, roses are cultivated with much and well-rewarded care; for even standards of thirty years growth have, every spring, a large quantity of manure laid on the surface round their stems. This keeps the extreme heat of the sun from penetrating to their roots; and as they are abundantly watered in hot weather, it also prevents that rapid evaporation which would otherwise take place, so often rendering watering useless; this practice is after all only imitating nature, for the Dog Rose, upon which all the fine varieties are grafted, grows naturally in woods and shady places; consequently, it is impatient of exposure in hot, dry soils and situations.

For rose beds on lawns, the roses of this division are finely adapted, as they form such a mass of foliage and flowers. They may also be formed into a regular bank, rising gradually from the edge, by having dwarfs of different heights, and "petites tiges," or dwarf standards, in the back ground. They bloom remarkably fine on these little stems, and as the stem is protected from the sun by the branches of the plant, it increases in thickness, much faster than when taller: tall stems, owing to exposure, are apt to become barkbound and unhealthy, increasing but slowly in girth, and often requiring support. To have hybrid China roses in perfection as pillar roses, they require attention, and a superabundance of manure; but they will amply repay it, for a column twelve to twenty feet high, covered with such roses as Brennus, Blairii, Belle Parabere, Coccinea superba, Fulgens, Fimbriata, General Lamarque, George the Fourth, King of Roses, Petit Pierre, or Triomphe d'Angers, &c, &c, would be one of the finest garden ornaments it is possible to conceive. To make these varieties grow with the necessary luxuriance, each plant should have a circle, three or four feet in diameter to itself; and if the soil is poor, it should be dug out two feet in depth, and filled up with rotten manure and loam. This compost must be laid considerably (say two feet) above the surface of the surrounding soil, so as to allow for settling: in shallow or wet soils, they will grow the better for being on a permanent mound. Plant a single plant in the centre of this mound, or, if you wish for a variegated pillar, plant two plants in the same hole, the one a pale-coloured or white, the other a dark variety: cover the surface with manure, and replenish this as soon as it is drawn in by the worms or washed in by the rains. Water with liquid manure in dry weather, and probably you will have shoots eight to ten feet in length the first season. I scarcely know whether to recommend grafted roses on short stems for this purpose, or plants on their own roots; this will in a great measure depend upon the soil, and perhaps it will be as well to try both. Most roses acquire additional vigour, by being worked on the Dog Rose; but some of the robust varieties of this family grow with equal luxuriance when on their own roots; finally, for dry and sandy soils, I am inclined to recommend the latter.

THE WHITE ROSE.
(rosa Alba.)

Rosa Alba, or the white rose, so called because the original species is white, is a native of middle Europe, and was introduced to our gardens in 1597. In some of the old farm and cottage gardens of Hertfordshire and Essex, a semidouble variety is frequent; this is but a slight remove from the single flowering original species, and grows luxuriantly without culture in any neglected corner. The roses of this division may be easily distinguished by their green shoots, leaves of a glaucous green, looking as if they were covered with a greyish impalpable powder, and flowers generally of the most delicate colours, graduating from pure white to a bright but delicate pink.

Attala is one of the deepest coloured varieties of this division, with large and partially cupped flowers of a perfect shape. Belle Clementine, an old but very pretty variety, a hybrid, departing in a slight degree from the characters of the group, often produces flowers finely mottled; it is a luxuriant grower, and forms a fine standard. Blanche superbe, or Blanche de Belgique is a much older variety than the preceding, with all the characters of this division, and producing very large and double flowers of the purest white. Blush hip is a hybrid, possessing more of the characters of this division than of any other, consequently it is placed in it: this is a fine and free growing rose, always beautiful. Bullata is a curious but pretty variety, with large foliage and tinted white flowers, forming a robust and fine standard. Camelliaeflora, a small but very pretty pure white rose, with cupped flowers; possesses all the characters of the species, and is quite worthy of cultivation. Duc de Luxembourg, a hybrid, is a most beautiful and unique rose, producing globular flowers of the largest size: the exterior of the petals is almost white, the interior of a bright rosy purple, at once singular and pleasing. Fatime is a pretty rose, its colour not pure white but tinted with a delicate pink in the centre of the flower: this is peculiar to roses of this family, and in general it is very pleasing. Fanny Sommerson, a new and very fine variety, is a most robust grower, producing rose-coloured flowers, extremely double, and finely shaped, a little imbricated, but so perfect that this variety may be considered a good show-rose. Felicite is also a new and beautiful rose; its flowers are exactly like a fine double ranunculus, of a most delicate flesh-colour: this is a distinct and fine rose.

Ferox is a most anomalous variety of this family, for most of its members are thornless; but this is completely covered with those fierce defenders: its flowers are of a pretty tinted white, very double and perfect. Josephine and Josephine Beauharnais must both be mentioned, as they are so often confounded: the first is a most robust grower, producing in large clusters, flowers not very double, of a delicate pink; the latter has large globular flowers, very double, white, tinted with rosy buff. La Seduisante is most appropriately named; it is not a new variety, but a rose most perfect in shape and beautiful in colour. Madame Campan is a hybrid, departing a little from the characters of the species, but producing flowers of a bright rose, finely mottled with white, of first-rate excellence. Princesse de Lamballe is one of the finest in this division, possessing all the characters of the species in its foliage, branches and flowers: these are of the purest white, and of the most perfect and beautiful shape. Queen of Denmark, an old but estimable variety, produces flowers of first rate excellence as prize flowers: so much was this esteemed when first raised from seed, that plants were sent from Germany to this country, at five guineas each. Sophie de Marsilly, a new variety, is a most delicate and beautiful mottled rose, with flowers very double and perfect in shape. Viridis is the far-famed green rose of France, which has several times been brought to this country, and sold as a great rarity: it is curious, for its flowers are nearly green till fully expanded. Zoraime is a new rose, pure white; but it has not yet bloomed in perfection in this country, so that an opinion cannot be given of the form and quality of its flowers. It has a high reputation in France.

The varieties of this family form a beautiful mass, not by any means gay and dazzling but chaste and delicate, and contrast well with beds of the dark varieties of Rosa Gallica and hybrid China roses; they also make good standards, often growing to a large size, and uniting well with the stock: they always bloom abundantly, and bear close pruning; in this respect they may be treated as recommended for the French roses.

THE DAMASK ROSE.

(rosa Damascena.)

The " Damask Rose" is a name familiar to every reader of English poetry, as it has been eulogised more than any other rose, and its colour described with a poet's licence. In these glowing descriptions, the truth, as is frequently the case in poetry, has been entirely lost sight of; for in plain unvarnished prose it must be stated, that the original damask rose, and the earlier varieties, such as must have been the roses of our poets, though peculiarly fragrant, are most uninteresting plants; however, we must not ungratefully depreciate them, for they are the types of our present new beautiful and fragrant varieties; the original species with single flowers is said to be a native of Syria, from whence it was introduced to Europe in 1573: varieties of it are still grown in the gardens of Damascus. The branches of the Damask rose are green, long, and diffuse in their growth; leaves pubescent, and in general placed far asunder; prickles on most of the varieties abundant. To those old members of this family, the red and the white monthly, which by some peculiar excitability often put forth flowers in warm moist autumns, nearly all our perpetual roses owe their origin, so that we can now depend upon having roses

« AnteriorContinuar »