Hybrids Of Rosa Rugosa
Professors Budd and Hansen of the Ames, Iowa, Experiment Station crossed some flowers of the Russian form of Rosa rugosa with the pollen of a number of the best garden roses. According to their bulletin 32 "This crossing was done in the summer of '92, and the seed planted the following spring. In the fall of '93 the plants were potted and wintered in the cellar. The following spring they were planted out in nursery rows where they now stand. In the fall of '94 the tops were cut back to mere stubs, which were covered with earth. During the past season ('95) they have made a rampant growth which has been unfavorable for the blossoming of such young plants. As a rule, the hybrids showing most variation from the Rosa rugosa mother have not bloomed, while those following more nearly the mother in leaf and habit have given more bloom.
"Among the many seedlings, one of which the staminate parent was General Jacqueminot, is a rampant grower, with many branches. It is less thorny, and its leaves are thicker, more leathery and glossy than those of either parent. So far it seems to be a model of health, and able to endure the extremes of summer heat and drouth. * * * Other hybrids have blossomed that show the beautiful color of Gen. Jacqueminot, Duchesse de Brabant and other choice varieties which show a tendency to doubling; and the other plants not yet in bloom indicate their hybrid character in color of wood and modified foliage. * * * The Russian Rosa rugosa now known as R. rugosa var. Regeliana is far handsomer in habit, in leaf and color of flower, and is hardier and much better able to endure drouth than the Japan type."
Our Iowa Friends are on the right tack. The hardy plants from Japan are very beautiful, but we find that most of them are surface rooting and must have considerable moisture in summer. What we need most is a hardy race that will endure the drouths of our parching summers, and if the good people of Iowa can help us in this respect they will do us very great service.