Q&A: Rose Vocab

I’ve been looking at some “low-maintenance” roses in a catalog. Can you tell me what they mean by “disease resistant” and “self cleaning”? Can I really believe these roses won’t get diseases?

Answer: Two terms often appear in the descriptions of low-maintenance roses. One is disease resistant. Here catalog writers are being honest. No rose will be disease proof in all situations, but some truly resist disease. That is, they do not develop blackspot or powdery mildew until well after other varieties in the same situation are defoliated or disfigured.

We also read of self-cleaning roses. This term refers to varieties that require no deadheading or summer pruning before they bloom again. Because they do not develop hips, these roses begin work on a second cycle of bloom as soon as the first begins to fade. (To catalog writers, self-cleaning must sound more appealing than sterile.)

A few disease-resistant roses
The Mayflower
Baby Love
Frau Dagmar Hastrup
Blanc Double de Coubert
Robin Hood

A few self-cleaning roses
Knock Out
Pink Simplicity
My Hero
Flower Carpet

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