The American Flower Garden Directory, pp. 182-189 (1834)
(Same as 1832)
Robert Buist

CHINA ROSES

From the first to the middle of this month is the best time to plant the varieties of Chinese roses. If they are to be removed out of the ground, the earlier in the month the better; but where they are in pots, the precise time is not so material. There are about seventy varieties, including the species of these in cultivation; all of them do extremely well in this country, growing freely, and flowering abundantly in the open air. A few of them require protection during winter. The List at the end of the work will contain all the finest varieties; but as they are not generally known, and the greater part of them highly deserving a situation in every garden, a few limited specific observations is obviously desirable to those who are not acquainted with their beauty and fragrance.

No. 1. Rosa indica, common China or daily. From the last name an error has taken place, that it blooms every day. In one sense of the word it does. Plants that are young, and in good ground, will grow and flower constantly from the end of April until the buds are killed with frost; but they will never flower when not growing; the bloom being produced on the young wood. The flower is about three inches in diameter, of a dark blush or rose colour, petals large, and loose, between a semi-double and double, and perfectly hardy.

* Those marked thus * we have grown from seed.

No. 2. *Rose Animated, daily, is a very fine rose, and its merits are appreciated by those who have it in their collections. It is more double, and better formed than No. 1, and partakes of the fragrance of No. 8, is perfectly hardy, colour a fine blush, grows freely, and flowers abundantly; and is coming into great repute.

No. 3. Rosa Indica minor, is the smallest of the China roses that we are familiar with; about the end of April or beginning of May it is completely covered with pretty little flowers, and much admired for its diminutiveness: colour same as No. 1.

No. 4. Rosa Bengal elongdta, named from the foliage being more elongate than the other common roses. It grows and flowers freely, petals large, colour light red, very distinguishable from any of the other sorts.

No. 5. Rosa belle Chinese, is a beautiful French rose, and blooms in great abundance; flowers large and double, colour when first expanded pink, and changes to crimson, making a striking appearance, and greatly admired.

No. 6. Rosa la tendere japonica, an erect growing rose, of a handsome purple colour, with large petals; much like the garden velvet rose.

No. 7. Rosa belle vibert, does not produce so large flowers as the three last mentioned; but they are very double, blooming abundantly in the latter part of summer; colour very dark, and by some called the Black China Rose.

No. 8. Rosa odorata, or Tea-rose, celebrated in this country for its fragrance being similar to fine Hyson tea. It justly deserves the preference of all the China roses, for the delicacy of its flavour. The flowers are a cream coloured blush, the petals round and full, forming a very large rose; when full blown, it is pendulous. It will withstand the winter of the middle states with a little protection, such as straw, box, or barrel; requires very rich light soil.

No. 9. Rosa Florence, or Scarlet-tea. This rose partakes of the fragrance of No. 8, is perfectly hardy, grows freely, and flowers profusely. The flower is well formed, very double, and a distinct variety from any that we know. The flower is lightest when first expanded.

No. 10. Rose, Purple-tea. We have not found how this name has originated: but when the plant known in our collections under that name is compared, there is no difference between it and No. 9.

No. 11. Rosa odorata alba, or White-tea, is not so odorous as No. 8, but blooms more profusely, and grows more freely. The beautiful and neat appearance of the buds, when half expanded, is not surpassed; and when full blown, they are a fine delicate white. The bush in that state is showy, much admired, and scarce; we are not positive of its being hardy.

No. 12. Rosa Bengal, or Yellow-tea, is a very free flowerer, the shape of the flower is more like No. 8. than any of the others; the petals are large and gracefully set, having a peculiar scent or flavour, and is of a sulphur colour. We cannot say as to its being hardy, but suppose it as much so as No. 8.

No. 13. Rosa Venella, or Venella Scented-tea, is undoubtedly a handsome rose, and has many admirers; colour a bloody velvet; flowers large and very double, rising in the centre more than any of the others; blooming freely, and of pleasant flavour; rendering it altogether a desirable rose.

No. 14. Rosa belle de monza. The flower of this rose is flatter than any of the other sorts; the petals are regularly laid over each other, making it very compact; it is about four inches in diameter when well grown; the plant is of quick growth, free in flowering, darker in colour than No. 1, equally as hardy, and ought to have a situation in every garden where roses are grown.

No. 15. Rosa amaranthe, is a showy brilliant scarlet rose, flower compact, and of a moderate size.

No. 16. *Rosa Clintonia, is a good rose, and in a favourable situation will produce abundantly large, round, and compact flowers, differing in shape from any of the others; colour similar to the provins rose.

No. 17. Rosa semperflorens pleno, or sanguinea, is a celebrated rose, the foliage small, and of a reddish appearance. The flower is well shaped, and of a blood colour; wood of a slender growth, requires some protection in winter, or it will die to the surface of the ground; delights in sandy soil. This rose is frequently called anemone-flowered, though in no respects similar to the character of an anemone-flower. The Otaheite rose is of the same colour, but very inferior.

No. 18. *Rosa purple sanguinea, is of a purple colour, same in shape as No. 17, but in size larger; is a good flowerer, making a fine variety. We do not know any similar to it.

No. 19. Rosa grandval, is a magnificent rose; flower full and large, petals closely set, colour dark crimson. The wood and leaves are like the Hamilton rose, but it grows and flowers more freely. It is scarce.

No. 20. Rosa Indica alba pleno, or white China, is a rose of free growth, abundant in flower, and pure white, which renders it very desirable; is larger than No. I, is greatly admired, and rare; requires rich light soil.

No. 21. Rosa Magnifier, magnificent, or magnifica. It is known under all these names. The general appearance of the plant resembles No. 19, but the flowers in shape and colour are similar to the garden Provins rose, and nearly as large.

No. 22. *Rosa florabunda multiplex. This rose is very correctly named, although the plant is of a moderate stature. The whole is covered with immense clusters of various coloured flowers, changing from pink to dark crimson; the flowers very double, and greatly admired.

No. 23. *Rosa flamaea, has a very striking appearance, is of a flame colour, and distinct from any other of the China roses; blooms freely, and is a little fragrant, which makes it desirable.

No. 24. *Rosa Hibbertia, is a superb rose of a light red colour; flower of a common size, double and compact, very fragrant, and abundant in bloom. The buds are of a particular shape, being flat at the extremity where others are pointed. It is highly deserving of a situation, and universally admired.

No. 25. *Rosa Jacksonia, is deep red, large, and very double, of luxuriant growth; is more spiny and elastic than any of the China roses that have come under our observation. The plant altogether is unique in its character, and flowers profusely.

No. 26. R. Adamsonia, is dwarf growing; has flowers of a beautiful purple velvet colour, inclining to black; and is much admired. When well grown, it will bloom freely.

†Named in honour of D. Webster, Esq. whose productions deserve
a place in every library; and this plant a spot in every garden.

No. 27. *Rosa Webesteria. None of the China roses approaches this, except Hortensia, and it is much inferior. The rose is very double, and particularly well formed; colour similar to No. 8, with a beautiful rich blush in the centre, flowing to the extremity of the petals. It blooms profusely, and grows freely in light rich soil.

No. 28. Rosa gigantea. Without exception, this is the handsomest shaped China rose that has come under our observation, the colour dark crimson, with a few shades through it. The centre is full set; petals regular and large, the flower very double, plant strong, growing and free blooming—it is scarce.

‡Originated on the substantial establishment of D. & C Landreth,
and called by them "Scarlet and White."

No. 27. *Rosa Washington,‡ is a very good and distinct variety; the foliage is pale green with red nerves; flower full and compact, the extremity of the petals dark red, the bottom white; showing, when the flower is full expanded, a white centre, and is frequently a little striped; grows well, and blooms freely, in light sandy soil.

No. 30. *Rosa calyxifolia. The calyx of this rose has large leaflets attached to it. It blooms very early, and is of a deep crimson colour, with recurved petals, which give it a singular and beautiful appearance. The young shoots and leaves are of a purple hue. It grows and flowers freely, and is quite characteristic, and surpasses any we know for flowering early in the Green-house or Rooms.

No. 31. Rosa Montezuma (Mexican-rose.) This is an esteemed variety, with large double flowers of a red colour, and when the flowers begin to fade they become darker; it is of a strong growing and hardy nature, much admired, and scarce.

No. 32. Rosa hortensia. The buds of this rose are very beautiful before expansion, and when fully expanded, are of a fine colour, assimilated to No. 8; flowers large in proportion to the growth of the plant.

These roses are all of a shrubby nature, and the finest flowering varieties that have come under our observation and culture. The China roses generally are not completely double, though going under the name of double flowers, and having the appearance of such. Those that are mentioned above as double and very double are those that are more double than No. 1, which is a rose that is generally known. The whole of them are much admired, and being now of great variety in colour, shade and aspect, constitute a valuable addition to the Flower-garden. A bed of varieties planted therein in good light rich soil, and well dressed by hoeing deep, raking, &c. during the early stage of their growth every season, will form an ornament varied in colour, unrivalled, and as yet not found in our Flower-gardens. Their nature agrees so well with our summer seasons, that it will not surprise us to see, in a few years, selections of them planted in rows or hedges, dividing the compartments in our gardens.

They are all hardy, but of those that are not perfectly so, we have mentioned the required protection. Any of them that have not been proved hardy in your collections, it would be extremely injudicious to leave them exposed the first winter after planting out. Caution is necessary on every unknown point; therefore, we would recommend to give them slight protection, by a covering of straw, mats, boxes, &c. and if they appear to withstand the winter in perfect safety, they will not need again to be covered.

The best season of the year for pruning them is about the first of this month. In doing so it is not advisable to shorten any of the young shoots, except in cutting off the injured parts, that being the wood most productive of bloom; but where there is old stinted wood, it should be cut out as close to the surface of the ground as the other parts of the bush will permit, with any other of the oldest wood that is too crowded. If the plants have been long established, dig in amongst their roots a little well decomposed manure, and stir and hoe them frequently during the summer.

Rose lists