Horticulture, Cottage Gardener and Country Gentlemen, 27: 96 (July 20, 1874)
Rose Hedges in the South of France
Rosa indica major is almost naturalised throughout the whole of this region. It possesses the additional claim to favour of flowering nearly all the winter, forming beautiful hedges of dark green shining foliage, from which thousands of clusters of lovely flowers rise, of a tender delicate transparent pink, or almost pure white, with a brighter tinge in the centre and at the tips of the petals. This Rose is an evergreen, and makes an excellent stock for grafting or budding.
It is either planted in nursery beds, where it quickly throws up a stem suitable for standards in the same way as we employ the Dog Rose, or in hedges, and left to its naturally luxuriant growth to produce its own charming flowers in rich profusion; or rows of cuttings are put in where it is intended to leave them, and subsequently budded with some of the varieties of the diverse tribes we have named.
We admired it most when treated in the manner last indicated. In the gardens of the Villa Lizerbe, Nice, the residence of M. Cazale, we saw three or four long hedges reared in this way; and on the 6th of May they presented a most gorgeous feast of flowers. To give only one instance, we plucked at random a flower of Gloire de Dijon, which measured 5 1/2 inches in diameter, or 16 1/2 in circumference; and it would not have been difficult to find even larger flowers.
This is how the intelligent head gardener, M. Guichard, obtained such splendid results: The soil where the hedge was to be made having been moved to the depth of more than 3 feet, was planted towards the end of winter with cuttings of well-ripened wood of Rosa indica major, about 9 inches apart. They were left to grow as much as they would, and not cut back at all. In August they were budded nearly close to the ground, and in the following year already they formed a hedge producing flowers abundantly. Iron wire stretched upon slender bamboo stakes is sufficient to support the branches. Pruning is only resorted to to keep them in shape, remove exhausted branches, and shorten gross shoots. This Rose is also easily propagated by pegging-down long branches or slightly covering them with earth, cutting them asunder at the joints when rooted, and thus obtaining as many plants as there are joints.
By this very simple process M. Cazale has succeeded in raising his Rose hedges of incomparable beauty. From these hedges waggon-loads of flowers might be cut every year. It is the varieties which flower in winter, amongst which Safrano is the very best, that are here propagated on a large scale. We particularly noted Souvenir de la Malmaison, Chromatella, Gloire de Dijon, Général Jaoqueminot, Maréchal Niel, Safrano, and Gloire des Rosomones. A large number of others grew and flowered equally as well as the foregoing. In conclusion, we recommend R. indica major as a stock wherever the winters are not very severe, and where earthing-up or covering around the base is sufficient protection to secure the advantages of this vigorous-growing species for this purpose.