Rose Annual, 1955, pp. 95-97
GERRIT DE RUITER
It was August 1914, when cutting budwood as a youth, I found a pretty red flowering shoot amongst a lot of pink polyantha roses, var. Orleans Rose. This I thought a great deviation of colour. Off this shoot a year later I had grown four bushes. This was the start of my first novelty, the polyantha rose Miss Edith Cavell. After I happened to find this sport my hobby was created to observe and select varieties of roses carefully. By this I succeeded in getting varieties in colours as pink, salmon, red and orange, which altogether could be described as the "Orleans Rose Group".
The following belong to the "Orleans Rose Group":
|Miss Edith Cavell||1917|
|Gloire du Midi||1932|
|Princess of Orange climbing||1935|
With the above group I should also mention the following varieties introduced in the United States of America:
Your request to mention "my masterpiece", I think very difficult to answer. If any one of the varieties I have introduced can be termed as a masterpiece, I would select Gloria Mundi introduced in 1929. The flowers were of a pure vermilion with an orange shade. I do not hesitate in stating that this colour at that time was a complete break, greatly admired by many rosarians as well as by the public at large. Faults as well as disappointments after introduction unfortunately occurred, but re-selected Gloria Mundi Superior are still planted in thousands, especially in greenhouses for forcing and cutting purposes.
In 1941 I started to hybridize, and after World War II, my first result was introducing De Ruiter's Herald in 1947. This "Herald" rose has been followed by:
|Border Queen||Pompadour Red||Rosemary Rose|
|Border King||Salmon Perfection||Red Wonder|
|Pompon Beauty||Signal Red|
Besides all these hybrid polyanthas the park- or shrub-rose, Lyric, was also introduced.
Last year a British firm introduced my first rose polyantha compacta roses. Certain crosses resulted in a number of rose varieties with compact habit, very hardy, and extremely disease-resistant. The very compact growth makes these varieties particularly suitable for pots, rock gardens, edging and small gardens. The first seven hybrids of this type were named after Walt Disney's noted characters—the seven dwarfs: Happy, Dopey, Doc, Bashful, Sneezy, Grumpy and Sleepy.
Might Gloria Mundi be called "my masterpiece" out of my
former introductions; as to my novelties of late years I am convinced that the
variety Red Wonder has all the good qualities for the title of "my
masterpiece". This is a hybrid polyantha with large red flowers. Red Wonder
(Better Times x Poly, seedling) has been tested by me during a number of years and I have always come to the
conclusion that the qualities of growth and disease-resistance of this plant as
well as strength and colour-fastness of the flowers may be really called
outstanding. There is no doubt that this rose, which will be put on the market
in the autumn of 1955 in England, will be a good stayer. In front of my house I
have planted a border of this variety with the result that throughout the
summer I have a border with flowering roses. The flowers last long and drop cleanly