pictures Martin Frobisher Seedling

This is the seedling that was from Martin Frobisher. Pollen parent was either Therese Bugnet or Lilian Austin.

Part of me is hoping it was a Lilian Austin cross, as I would have a fertile triploid. But the thought of zone 3 fully hardy bush with these blooms is certainly a great one. The fragrance is excellent. Repeat bloom will have to be observed, although it is forming hips now, so I will have to see how that effects it.

The pictures don’t really bring it out due to lack of lighting, but it is a light blush color that is beautiful. My wife keeps thinking it is an old rose, so it is definitely better in person than in the pictures. I am thinking that it may end up white in bright sunlight.



For those who like them the leaves are very much a Rugosa.
The blooms stay fairly deeply cupped and hold the loose button eye throughout their life.

Downsides: the petals are soft, which gives them such a delicate appearance, but I fear will be an issue in rain.
Also, this causes them to not last as long as I would like. Although the fragrance is more than worth the downsides.


very nice…keep us posted on her progress

That’s a grand rose bloom … well done

Thank you! I will update later. So far I have hips developing from Wasagaming, Great Maiden’s Blush, Chinook Sunrise, Olivia Rose Austin: so accepted quite a variety, providing they don’t abort late. Also need them to germinate, so we will see next spring.

Beautiful seedling! Congratulations.

You may be interested in comparing it with my seedling:

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Love it, Duane! It’s so nice to get a blossom that looks like it should be super fragrant…that actually is super fragrant. I hope it repeats and is rock solid hardy.

Some thoughts as to the possible parentage:

I crossed Métis with Catherine Guelda last year. Two pink roses who each have Therese Bugnet as a a parent. Many of the seedlings that bloomed this spring had white blossoms, which seemed funny to me. One explanation is that Therese Bugnet has recessive genes for white and passed them on to both Métis and Catherine Guelda. So maybe that leans towards the possibility of your rose having Therese Bugnet as a parent.

Also the rugose foliage, as you mentioned. Also the amount of winter dieback will be telling. There is a pic of Martin Frobisher’s stems on HMF…they’re dark and low-thorn just like Therese Bugnet, so I wonder what the possibility is that Martin Frobisher itself has Therese Bugnet as a parent.


Henry, that is a beautiful rose. Is that the one I remember reading about before that is exceptionally fragrant? Is it fertile either direction?

Joe, you could be right about recessive for white , especially considering Henry’s rose. This one starts as a very light blush, which we love. It becomes white with age. Perhaps it will from the start in full sun, we have had mostly clouds even into July.
I would be glad if Therese was the pollen parent because it should be fully cold hardy then. Of course I need it to be able to breed with tetraploid to be useful for my intentions. Although a fully double fragrant diploid might be useful for breeding in a diploid line for those so inclined.
I’m thinking I need to get a few copies of it so I can test it separately from breeding with it.
Has anyone had any luck rooting cuttings from Rugosa hybrids? I have only transplanted a few suckers from them.
Thanks for the comments!

The plants of rugosa roses that we buy are own-root, which tells me they must be rootable…not sure if there is any difference in rootability and technique from the popular modern roses.

It might be that, even if it is diploid, your seedling will have enough genetic diversity to avoid the sterility and general awkwardness that comes from crossing diploid rugosas with modern tetraploids.

Another characteristic to consider: how long do the blossoms last (relative to those of the potential parents)? It would be really cool if they lasted more than one day, which doubles the amount of color on the plant at any time. Longer-lasting blossoms than most rugosas would be cool, but would also perhaps be an indicator of the other potential pollen parent’s influence.


I don’t take any pleasure in raining on your parade as the saying goes, but if ‘Therese Bugnet’ is the staminate parent of your selection then this is a problematic cross unless you did it as a fun experiment for whatever reason.

First, ‘Martin Frobisher’ and ‘Therese Bugnet’ are obsolete rose cultivars, having virtually no value in today’s landscapes. They are too tall and their flowering performance generally can’t compete with many, shorter shrub rose cultivars having brighter and sharper colours developed since they were. So there is no point in developing another similar cultivar that your selection is likely to be.

Secondly, even if there was value in developing another similar cultivar to ‘Martin Frobisher’ or ‘Therese Bugnet’, it’s generally a mistake to combine cultivars having disease issues such as these two cultivars have. I wouldn’t use ‘Therese Bugnet’ in any breeding program, and then since it’s likely the staminate parent of ‘Martin Frobisher’, well then one is just asking for trouble.

I’ll just mention that ‘Schneezwerg’ is one of the most disease resistant Rugosas to work with, but we see the detrimental results when it’s combined with a rose that isn’t.

‘Martin Frobisher’ and ‘Therese Bugnet’ are easily propagated by softwood cuttings so it’s likely your selection will be too. I wish you well with it.


For my needs l believe there is rose gardening, and then there is estate architectural landscaping with some token roses, or 401 Knockouts at 25$-30$ a pop. My favourite landscape gardening, is in the middle with a mix of cottage and grand - and just a lot of roses.

One pole can be ordered cottage garden chaos, personal, esoteric and membership in a seed national repositories, and done a shoe string budget. The other a grand garden architecture design showing the money - like the cardinals’ estate gardens of the renaissance or Ninfa or La Mortella.

A mix of classy, old stately, tall, bold and beautiful roses with adorable short ones up front is the best balance for my eye in a garden landscaping. Inclusive of perennials. Even if your in a council estate with a 36 m2 “back yard” - good on Monty et al.

The hydridizers also come with the same spectrum. Some like to foresee whats commercially the new trend and make great disease resistant product and perhaps peer acknowledgement and drivers, and a bit of income from their passion - just like European estate gardens evolved over the centuries. Others like antique form, color palette and substance and want to improve it for the times.

Carry on Mountainman, Austin et al (and private) just make a few token actually cane hardy - even if told no money in it. Just let me know if you score one and l will queue up to look at it.

Just be aware spectrum feedback goes with the excitement of success and set your course with input mods as required as it is your work and only your work.

Thank you, each of you, for your thoughts.

Of course, like many of you, I would be glad if a rose I bred was considered by others to be worthy of placing down their hard earned money on it. Taste being as tastes are, some would say yes and others no. But that is not why I am breeding roses.

My wife and I love old garden roses! We love English Roses! We love others of their kind from Meilland, Kordes, Weeks, etc.
In our garden more than half of our roses died, surviving 0-2 winters. Those that did manage to live had to start over, after dying to the ground each winter. This meant really small bushes (compared to being grown in other places) with very few blooms (again, compared to being grown in other places). We dearly missed our English Rose Shrubs loaded with hundreds of blooms in the early summer: anyone who has seen a very large shrub of Graham Thomas or a climber of The Generous Gardener will understand what I mean.

The only bushes that really stood out at the beginning of summer were Hansa and Therese Bugnet. These had been planted on either side of the entrance to the garden, and the impact they had was more than any gardener could wish for. You must understand, the garden we grew roses in was three to four times the size of the house we were living in. The house was small, but the garden large. Thus all the small shrubs, struggling to make it each year, could not manage to make an impact on the whole.

Towards the end I had added Party Hardy, William Baffin, Blanc de double Coulbert, and Martin Frobisher as more cold hardy shrubs. I did this for two reasons:

  1. hoping that they would fill out and add impact, just as Hansa and Therese Bugnet were doing
  2. in hopes of starting to breed roses again, with the sole purpose of developing more cold hardy roses in a style we would love.

Cold hardy has added a huge learning curve, as had disease resistant. But it has been as much fun as it has been a challenge. I keep readjusting my approach. Much of those adjustments come from comments I have read from all of you, so thank you!

My preferred method of growing a rose is mixed with perennials. As we are moving next week, we get to start another garden from scratch. We are discussing a potager this time around .We will grow roses of all sizes and shapes, as long as we love them and they can survive where we live. I trust that the rose growing public is a large enough, and diverse enough, lot that someone somewhere may have the same taste as we do. If not, more power to them and happy rose growing!


Sounds very familiar to another journey in a cold zone … takes awhile but keep it fun … its possible … some got fortunate and met somebody who knew what grew here relative to my tastes that could do as a sub … now not looked at as a sub … first hurdle was getting over once bloomers. Remembering the season was short helped jumping that hurdle. Then looking at the old timers product, that got squeezed out by Southern Ontario and lotusland markets for condo porch plants equivalent … and the sales pitch partial and crown hardy is okay … now time (way past due) to improve on that pioneer foundation … good luck

Beautiful pictures!
We are starting over, so blank canvas, except for a patch of strawberries and raspberries just starting to ripen. Fun years ahead, hopefully. I hope we get some established as you have.

Txs, be sure to replant your of MF cross as a good start with large bloom potential.

My MF and TB’s form a good part of the taller structures in my garden. Yes they can have a bad winter. After years in the garden l had three MF 6-8 footers smoke it down to the ground 2 winters back, but they are recovering.

If you decide to try the once bloomer spino hybrids, be aware they are very tall “shrubs” and can be aggressive spreaders like TB. I keep mine in check with equally aggressive pruning to a core of 3-5 canes - rejuvenating the core with new growth as required. You will still be chasing runners.

Some excellent garden value ones are Erskine and Skinners’ Prairie Peace (apricot - very double) and Butter Ball (strong yellow single) and pink Prairie Dawn (unfortunate forget hybridizers name). All three draw constant compliments from passers by on the boulevard. Only one commercial drawback, not sure if available in States.

I only have one Austin (3 plants) and for nearly or 15 years, and thats Gertrude Jekyll (how appropriate from a gardening history view point). Started blooming today but in bay window south facing tender experimental plot. Only Austin out of scores (all the old pickering offerings) that has survived. Gerties survival might be a environmental-biological fluke from planting location - down to ground every winter. Canes reach 3-4 feet by fall.

Some other considerations, the shrub Red Dawn x Suzanne (should really be named Simonet Premium as l would sell on a Francophone name) … and Victorian Memory climber, really originally Isabelle Skinner (think a forum contributor got that rose credited to the right breeder). Both very productive and roche hardy to acceptable dieback.

Do not know about climate suitability or disease pressure for your new garden since mine doesn’t have hardy type hangups and doesn’t seem to be that hospitable to rose contagions - except BS in some mordens and SDO (put out of misery after plant repeatedly decimated).

l hear PP is craved in northern climates of Europe so might be available in States … l never checked. Victorian Memory is.

Might want to consider tossing in some more rugosa hybrids expendables for show, and as mare or stud breeding roses.

Good luck.

TB is being used by Warren, so sooner or later likely new TB derived plants will be on the European market so claims of obsoletion should be taken as opinion rather than fact.

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“Jamie” in my garden today and (intro by Denning) believed to be to be an an OP of Therese Bugnet.

Found in BBN on Vancouver, and is a an example that Therese is not yet finished in market … l bought them.

Since 2013 have planted 3 in my garden at front of the border all close together because it stays soooo short … never more than 1-1.5 feet.

Has a great large bloom form to start relative to plant size and finishes a mauve - never repeated as of yet. I bought more as it meets the need of a shorty, hardy up front.

Introducer says four feet on the island … never yet in my garden … never seen disease and has a hard time being taller than a hosta.

Erata … Robin “ Dening”

Warren’s TB seedlings are healthy, clearly it’s not as problematic in getting healthy seedlings from as implied, like most things though location likely plays a role. I mean you find Schneezwerg ‘one of the most disease resistant Rugosas to work with’ yet here it’s one of the worst, around 75% infection rate every year, seeing it here makes Martin Frobisher’s weakness somewhat obvious where it picked it up, I wouldn’t be surprised if Schneezwerg has a vertical resistance to blackspot strains in your location but little to no horizontal resistance. Disease strains vary location to location after all and this being a forum with people from all over the globe, the use of absolutes is prone to error often. There may be no ‘sense’ in you using TB in breeding in your location but the disease pressures in your location aren’t universal, I mean even Joe on here is using seedlings of TB (eg Metis, Catherine Guelda) and Joe is pretty candid about the black spot issues in his area which just further highlights TB and seedling’s may have more use than you wish to consider.