Welcome to the November 2001 edition of my web site! The roses I write about are the Old Garden Roses and select shrub and miniature roses of the 20th century. For tips on rose culture, pruning, propagation and history, see "Other resources on this site". To return to this page, click on the "thorn icon" in the margin at left. Articles from the previous months are archived and can be viewed by clicking on the listings in the left margin. Oh, and please don't write to me for a catalog or pricelist.....this is an information site only.....not a commercial nursery. If you wish to buy roses, see my sponsor, The Uncommon Rose. Thanks!
"About 1944 or so, a young man crawled around on his hands and knees, pollinating blooms of a thorny R. wichuraiana with pollen from a newly introduced FIoribunda called 'Floradora'. Little did he realize that fifty years later, his thorny efforts would still be paying off for rose breeders, exhibitors and "enjoyers" alike.
At left: "0-47-19".
"Mr. Moore hoped to introduce the vigor, fertility and handsome, resistant, evergreen foliage of the species (R wichuraiana) into his dreamed-of miniatures. The rose that resulted was selected for breeding in 1947 and was given the unromantic name 0-47-19. From a genealogical standpoint, in may well have been called Adam, for it was destined to "go forth and populate the earth".
"0-47-19 probably wouldn't catch your attention, unless you like spring blooming, R. wichuraiana climbers. It has smallish, semi-single, pale orange-pink blooms. It did catch Mr. Moore's eye though, much to our good fortune." *
"0-47-19" has been one of the single most important roses in the Moore breeding program, having sired 68 roses, mostly named varieties, and almost all miniatures. At first, it comes as an enormous surprise to realize that so many of the Moore Miniatures have been created using what can only be described as a typical R. wichuraiana rambler! However, as Ralph Moore discovered early in his experiments in rose breeding, miniaturism generally behaves as a dominant trait, and only one copy of the gene need be present in a rose to be expressed. Ralph will also tell you there seem to be more factors responsible for the expression of miniaturism than simple Mendelian genetics dictates, and there is certainly some quantitative expression as well. Within the selection of progeny from "0-47-19", we have seen everything from standard 12 to 16 inch miniatures of bush form, to climbing miniatures of 5 feet in height, to the smallest microminiatures like 'Tiny Flame', and even a few Ramblers with near-miniature blooms! It has become evident that miniaturism can affect the plant size and the blossom size independently at times.
It is also of interest to note that since the mid-1980's, "0-47-19" has not been used as much to create new miniatures, but has instead been explored more in the creation of shrubs and climbers! There is the as yet, unreleased climber called simply "C-10" which is a deep ruby red Crested Climber descended from 'Crested Moss' (R. centifolia cristata, or 'Chapeau de Napoleon'). (Pictured here above, right) It bears 3.5 to 4.5 inch, rich red blooms on a vigorous climbing plant of about 10 to 12 feet in height. The buds show a very good amount of cresting inherited from R. centifolia cristata, and the plant has excellent, highly disease resistant foliage. It is a once-bloomer, but makes a spectacular display over a long period. This is one of the more remarkable roses to come out of "0-47-19" and is quite distinct among its progeny. It shows that this is a versatile hybrid whose contributions to rose breeding may have only just begun! (Please note: this variety is still in testing and has NOT yet been released in commerce. Please do not call Sequoia Nursery asking for it. It's introduction will be announced when it comes available.)
"Its first commercial product arrived in 1950 from a cross with 'Little Buckaroo's pollen. It was called 'Lollipop' and was a bushy, bright red, double miniature. Two years later, 'Lemon Drop' resulted from pollen from his wonderful "Zee" and seed from "0-47-19".
"Over a thirty-year period, sixty-one of Mr. Moore's introduced roses can claim "0-47-19" as a direct parent. Many of these have, themselves, enjoyed great longevity and productivity as parents. 'Papoose', a single, white mini groundcover/climber bred from R. wichuraiana X "Zee" and introduced in 1955, with 'Playboy's pollen, produced 'Ralph's Creeper' in 1988. Many of the better known Moore roses have come from this line, such as 'Little Buckaroo' (1956), itself a tremendous parent; 'Yellow Bantam' and 'Eleanor' (1960); 'Simplex' (1961), arguably the best single mini; 'New Penny' (1962), used extensively by Mr. Moore, McGredy, Harkness and dozens of other breeders; 'Red Wand' and 'Fresh Pink' (1964), both great landscape plants; 'Tiny Flame' and 'Candy Pink' (1969); 'Green Ice' (1971); 'Red Cascade' (1976); 'Happy Thought' (1978); 'Little Eskimo' (1981) and 'Red Moss Rambler' (1990). Remarkable, isn't it? To think that a vigorous species, crossed with a Floribunda, could create a parent that could produce everything from climbing miniatures and climbing mosses, to the tiniest of micro-miniatures is incredible. Mr. Moore is still exploring "0-47-19"s genes. He has recently created a beautiful yellow climber from "0-47-19" crossed with 'Sequoia Gold'. ("Bv158-91-10") There is still more of this story to come." *
Mr. Moore, speaking on his experience with "0-47-19":
"We made crosses into R. wichuraiana, and the reason there was to get something that rooted very easily, because wichuraiana will lay on the ground and root at the joints like Bermuda grass. That is a rose that is involved in a good share of the roses I have produced over the years."
"I knew that the Rambler roses were based on wichuraiana, and they rooted so readily. So I got a plant, and I didn't have sense enough to put it on a trellis or anything like that. I let it spread out on the ground. It was between some other climbing roses and when it started to bloom, I had 'Floradora' and I just crawled around there and pollenized a bunch of the flowers. It set seed and I planted these, and I had 2 or 3 rows probably 30-40 feet long of the seedlings that I transplanted into the field. Some were semi-double and there were a few doubles and singles…. there were whites and pinks and so on. And I selected one, and strangely it was the first one in the row, and that's the one we know as "0-47-19". It's very profuse flowering, it's very fragrant, flowers about 1.5 to 2 inches across, in clusters and it has a kind of apricot bud and opens and gradually turns pink. But it sets seed; every flower will set a seed hip. Eventually, right in here where this greenhouse is, we had a row about 50 feet long and we put it up (on a trellis) and worked it on a ladder. There are some old pictures that show it, and we made thousands of crosses. We got mostly one-time bloomers and climbers, but we got a few bushes. It was a key variety because it has gone in so many directions. It can take pollen from nearly any kind….it's still worth playing with.
"It's a typical old-fashioned Rambler, but if had come out in the early 1900's, why, it would have found a good place, but it was too little, too late.
"About 25% of the seedlings are repeat blooming, dwarf plants. Of course, in that you get some weak ones, well most of them are no good, let's put it that way. The others would be (useful) if you wanted to grow them out and bloom in the next generation for some crosses; you would get some more bush types. There's also the possibility, depending what you use, of picking up repeat blooming Ramblers, I think that's something for the future. That was something I dreamed of over 60 years ago, but we haven't done it.
"We have other roses that are repeat bloomers. Generally when you get a repeat blooming climbing rose or a rambler, they're not as vigorous as the one-time bloomers. On the other hand you get things like climbing Hybrid Teas and such as that, and the tendency there is to give one big shot of bloom in the spring and maybe some scattering along later in the year….they're not really repeat bloomers. I don't have an objection to some of some of these that bloom once in the spring when they do such a marvelous display. They're worth waiting for. I tell people that we grow things like Lilacs and flowering Quince, Crabapples and all those things, and they only bloom once, and we wait for them and enjoy them.**
When asked why he became attracted to R. wichuraiana, Mr. Moore responded:
"The species is quite mildew resistant actually. One of the chief things I was interested in was the ease of propagation, because for years I have been an own root enthusiast and I wanted something that would root very readily, and when wichuraiana lays on the ground, it roots like Bermuda grass at every joint. I think its important that the roses are easy for the customer and gardener to grow, but its also important for the nurseryman because the better plant he gets and the cheaper he can produce it, the more popular it's likely to be. So a rose has to be easy to grow from the time the nurseryman puts the first propagation in, to the gardener in the garden with the least care.
"Another thing is that wichuraiana is very compatible with so many other kinds of roses. In working with the miniatures, why, it gave the cluster flowering habit which I liked. It's nice to have some for exhibition that have one flower to a stem, but on the other hand, for a pot or a garden, you want as many flowers as you can to get some color over a long period of time. With clusters of flowers, they don't all open at the same time, so you get a display of color for a long period of time.
"Another thing about the wichuraiana is that it seems to pick up different flower forms easily. Whether it's a rosette form, whether it's a single or whether it's a pointed, classical Hybrid Tea bud, it just seems like its easy to work with in many directions. There hasn't been a lot of work done with wichuraiana, going back to the species, but I think it's got a lot of possibilities." **
The complete list (to date) of roses bred directly from "0-47-19" Note that in every instance it serves as a seed parent only:
'Lollipop': 0-47-19 X 'Little Buckaroo', Miniature, medium red.
Kim Rupert, from his article Unsung Heroes, previously written for his
Rose Society newsletter.