Jun 12, 2012
Stop and Smell the RosesBy Jasmina Dolce

For many people, roses serve one purpose: Valentine’s Day gift. Once in a while, those same people may branch out and use roses for a birthday or Mother’s Day or the popular “apology” bouquet. But lately, I’ve been noticing the popularity of roses growing rapidly.For a long time, I was one of those people who limited roses to just a few special occasions. However, even I am beginning to use them in various applications. I’m inspired by the marketing programs and POP displays out there as well as the creativity of my garden-loving neighbors.I walk around my neighborhood and I don’t know if I just didn’t pay attention before or if this is a new trend, but I see roses everywhere! I see roses in so many different colors, not just the traditional red and pink. And I see them being used in the landscape, in mixed combinations and even hanging baskets!This growing interest in roses does not surprise me, though. After attending the 2012 California Spring Trials, I was really impressed with the rose introductions, merchandising displays and packaging options.Here are some of the interesting new developments in roses we saw while traveling along the California coast this spring…While visiting the Suntory stop in Vista, we were introduced to the breeder’s new line of mini roses: Sunrosa. Due to their compact habit, these roses are ideal for small to medium landscape spaces and patio containers. They need less pruning than typical shrub roses, and they are easy to care for due to their disease resistance. Roses are nothing new to Conard Pyle, but this year they added a new color to their popular Drift series. ‘Popcorn Drift’ is a mutation of ‘Peach Drift’. It starts out yellow and fades to cream white, sometimes suffused with light pink. While at the Greenheart Farms location in Arroyo Grande, we got to see so many inspiring rose displays. The company is really stepping it up when it comes to promoting roses for all seasons and all applications. They used roses in various holiday displays, and showed how roses could be used from tabletop containers to hanging baskets. Although Proven Winners’ Oso Easy roses aren’t new, they had a lovely display of these landscape varieties at their trial location. Their colors were vibrant and they had fantastic container presentation. One of my favorite colors (pictured above) is ‘Oso Easy Mango Salsa’. Have you found success with roses? What do you think of the new colors and programs out there? Shoot me an email at [email protected]; I’d love to hear from you.To see more trends and new variety introductions from Spring Trials, check out the Spring Trials edition of Hort TV, where Tim Hodson and I share some of the highlights from our week-long journey up the California coast.–Jasmina

Jasmina Dolce

Jasmina Dolce is managing editor of GPN magazine. She can be reached at [email protected]

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