Oakington Ruby, Chance discovery by Bloom, UK 1933.
This pretty miniature rose is supposedly a sport of R. roulettii, discovered by chance in an English Garden by a Mr. C. R. Bloom. The early miniatures were largely chance discoveries from China and Switzerland, and were thought to be a variety named R. chinensis minima. In the 1800's they were referred to as Lawrencianas, named after one of their discoverers. A number of varieties were well known at that time, (1810-1846) but sadly, it appears that most of them have become extinct. ('Pompon de Paris' is considered to be one of the Lawrencianas still in existance. Some have suggested that 'Oakington Ruby' may in fact be one of the surviving Lawrencianas also, but we will likely never know for sure)
The color is a rich scarlet-red, fading to cherry red-pink, and the plant is quite dwarf....about 12 to 18 inches tall, and it has tiny leaves that are perfectly in scale with the plant. Even in modern times, it is still a charming rose with much character.
Be sure to read the pages about Ralph Moore, Miniature rose breeder extraordinaire, to see what an important role 'Oakington Ruby' played in the early years of his breeding program.
merit rating: 6.0
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Original photographs and site content © Paul Barden 2006, All Rights Reserved.