Looking forward to using Midnight Blue

I am looking forward to using Midnight Blue for the first time this year. I am wanting to cross it with several things. First would be R. hugonis. I will have to freeze some of its pollen. The results will be triploid but I was just thinking about combining the two colors and seeing what comes about. For some reason, when I get a plant of R spinosissima altaica I would like to use that on MB as well. The results could be cool there too. The resulting seedlings there should be tetraploid. I am also wanting to put Baby Love on it. I know Jim Sproul has done this cross and had some good results. Does anyone know what kind of coloring I could expect from crossing Yellows and whites with it? Any other species suggestions to use on it. I was also thinking of roxburghii.


I think you’ll get pink. So far those I’ve produced with my yellow probable xanthina have been pink. Of course the seed parents were pink.

A friend of mine has worked with hugonis and strangely enough the first generation descendants don’t look anything like hugonis.

The ones I have here are much like climbers or groundcovers. One is a wichurana cross which makes sense. The other is a china hybrid and you would swear it’s a noisette or something by the growth habit.

I agree with Robert; any crosses I have done putting strong yellows on ‘Midnight Blue’ have given me pinks, occasionally with a hint of yellow at the base of the petals.

I got true lavender using Jude the Obscure with Purple Heart. Midnight Blue is more condensed, though. I would expect Ebb Tide to bring more mauve than Midnight Blue would.

I haven’t had much success with Ebb Tide pollen I had posted to me yet… will have to try and get a plant instead. Species roses wouldn’t accept it but tetraploid minis did (so far… haven’t aborted yet anyway and look to be developing).

Thanks guys, I kinda figured I would get pink.

Mike, you’ll likely get pink when and IF it flowers. Some of the xanthina hybrids here won’t flower.

Thanks Robert, do you think it is worth trying though.

Hi Mike,

Yes, I did cross it with ‘Baby Love’ and the vast majority were pink. There were a handful of seedlings though that had a mauve look to them and one mini that had a very good purple coloring to it. That is definitely a cross to repeat. I love MB. It figures heavily into my hulthemia breeding - somehow adding it to the mix seems to improve on the blotch intensity. And it has strongly conveyed fragrance to its babies.

Jim Sproul

Mike, yes I think it’s worth trying if you don’t expect too much. One of these days one of us is going to get lucky. It will only happen if we keep trying. At least we know F1 hybrids are possible.

I’ve got my fingers crossed that I will get flowering with some of the xanthina/hugonis F1 hybrids here this Spring.

Jim, I am sure the multiple layers of anthocyanidins it probably carries probably helped a lot – just a guess.