How old should a rose be before attempting hybridize?

hello, first post, this place is full of wonderful knowledge. :slight_smile:
just wondering if there is a period i should wait after purchasing roses before trying to hybridize ? i am aware of the patent laws etc, i mean just general health of the plant, if i buy bare root roses, when could or should i start making attempts ? 12+ months ?
if i buy potted roses 6-12 months ?

also, would having the roses in large(50-100 litres) pots cause issues in trying to hybridize ? i cannot really commit to planting them in ground.

thank you in advance.

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I can only speak for myself, and I have several examples where I planted a bare-root rose in the early spring, and began successfully hybridizing beginning with first flowering in May. I have two new-to-me roses this very year that have apparently viable hips in progress.


I had a cutting from a seedling of mine growing in a small (three inches) pot that grew no more than five inches tall last year, but it produced an open-pollinated hip from an early flower that I left on just to see what would happen. It ripened, and I now have seedlings from it, and yet the parent plant is doing just as well as the other same-aged rooted cuttings from that same rose growing in exactly the same conditions (they all stayed fairly small, so the plant’s size wasn’t much affected by that hip).

Patent laws (except where a variety might be covered by a U.S. utility patent) should not have any impact on breeding activity.



Perfect, thank you both very much, makes me happy to hear as i do not have a lot of room, so smaller plants could allow me to have more varieties to play around with.

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First year plants are good for testing. Basically, information seeking.

Do they readily set? Does the pollen shed easily? Is there much pollen at all? Do the hips rot easily if they do set? Is this a type where only 1-3 seeds is common? Will the few seeds I got germinate readily? And so on…

Stuff like that is what one wants to trial out with their first year plants.