Polyantha seedling's first flowers question

Quick question… do polyantha seedlings usually develop their first flowers eartly in their first season, like remontant shrub/HT/miniature seedlings do, or do they take a little longer to reach flowering age? I have a large number of OP “Baby Faraux” that, at about 6-7 weeks old, are already twice as tall as the 2 year old parent plants and they aren’t showing any signs of flowering. The parent plants are about to come into flower over the next two weeks. Note double quotes because “Baby Faraux” is what I’ve been calling it as it is the nearest match so far but I am not 100% certain. It could be ‘Raymond Privat’ though I have been told there is no record of it ever being imported into Australia, though it could well have been brought in as ‘Baby Faraux’ and Robert tells me they are frequently confused… so read this as something that resembles ‘Baby Faraux’ or ‘Baby Faurax’… however you want to spell it. Mine has a noticeable fruity fragrance, is thorny, and my two year old plants are barely 20cm tall with flowers not exceeding 4cm in diametre. I am wondering whether they might all be once-flowering but I haven’t raised poly seedlings before so thought I’d better check first before I bin the lot. They are very healthy/clean and growing more like climbers (in the greenhouse) than petite little polys but I don’t really want non-remontant poly plants around the place when I have a lot of other seedlings that I know are going to be once-blooming to channel my resources into.

Hi Simon,

They can still start flowering here after a bit. My Candy Oh! Vivid Red had well over a foot of growth the first time it flowered with over 20 or more leaves and then a flower. I have polyanthas that bloom very early and repeatedly. The ones I have that do not start blooming very early as young seedlings have been primarily from ‘Robin Hood’. I had ‘Baby Fraurax’ and the seedlings I raised from it (crosses I think with the precocious polys) I think were quick bloomers. Don’t give up, I suspect many should bloom. Also, most polys are pretty strongly self-incompatible, so if you are raising op seedlings consider what you have planted nearby that would likely cross with it that perhaps may be a once blooming or may be a hybrid musk that can put on a lot of lanky long growth before flowering. Polys can self of course under warm conditions and other factors and some are more prone to it than others, so they may not be crosses if they are op. Roses have a gametophytic self incompatibility system that can be “leaky” and diploid polyanthas seem to have it working pretty strongly.

I wouldn’t give up on the seedlings yet. This early habit may suggest they may grow into something a bit more lanky and hybrid musk-like.


Ahhhh… now that makes sense… growing next to it is ‘Henri Martin’ and ‘Golden Chersonese’… both once bloomers. Thanks for that David. I will hang onto them to see what turns up.

Does ‘Golden Chersonese’ or ‘Henri Martin’ blooming time overlap your “Baby Faraux” one?

As they are very different you should be able to eventually exclude the first or both or point to another neighbour just examinating each seedling leaves.

The lineage for Baby Faurax is unknown but suspected to be somehow related to Veilchenblau, a large rambler. So, who knows what is behind Baby Faurax and what it can fully do.

I have about 100 seedlings from it though so if there was anything lurking I would not expect it to have 100% expression.

‘Henri Martin’ was in flower at the same time as “Baby Faraux” as was ‘Golden Chersonese’. A large white multiflora and a large pink multiflora was also flowering next to it (and the growth habit of the seedlings looks very multiflora-like… exactly like the OP mulitflora seedlings I’m growing for rootstocks). It’s about to come into flower again and all of these are flowering around it now as well. My mini and HT seedlings, that are the same age, are flowering now, yet these poly seedlings don’t even look like they will develop any buds any time soon. I know remontancy can set in slowly over an extended period of time as well… just thought I’d ask if there are any pecularitities with poly seedlings?

Update… the poly seedlings still haven’t flowered and another question has popped up too… the only miniature thing about these seedlings is their leaves. They have put on over 3ft of growth since germinating at the beginning of September… I’ve only kept one and have trimmed it back so it branches, which it is doing nicely. Is the small stature of these small polys like Baby Faraux, Sweet Chariot, The Fairy, etc due to miniature genes or are they just small? I guess ‘Sweet Chariot’ is small due to a mini gene from ‘Little Chief’???

Wichuraiana as well as banksiae, nitida and other smaller leaved species have definite if relatively miniaturizing genes with possible to probable additive effects.

In fact miniature is just smaller than small…

And here is the probable origin of this phenotype as it is factual that polyanthas contributed to early miniatures.

I have noticed that a lot of microminis are from mini + polyantha, so it makes me wonder if microminis (the healthy ones that are not just runted minis) are some sort compound of effects which we do not fully understand.

Jadae I have wondered about the micro miniatures also. I think it is likely that the polyantha have one type of miniature gene coming from R. multiflora that reduces certain characteristics of the plant to a certain degree. And then the miniature have a different gene at a different alle location that reduces the stature of plants when they have this gene. This gene coming to us from R. chinensis. When these two different genes get together they combine their effects and create a micro miniature. But this is only an educated guest so I could be wrong.

If this is right I wonder what would be the effect of crossing miniatures or polyathus to some of the lower statured gallicas or one of the few miniature type centifollias (like Petite de Hollande).

I also wonder how many rose species have some short of miniature gene lurking out there. I read a statement from Harkness that his work with R. california also produced some miniatures and these miniatures where not coming from the other parent.

From ‘Climbing Roses of the World’ in the section about Multiflora it says, “Rosarians were again surprised that the union of strong-growing climbing cultivars should result in the progeny of dwarf habit.”

I’ve seen ‘spontaneous miniatures’ a few times in multiflora (and also wichuraiana) hybrids. I’ve also seen the opposite, a plant with larger foliage than both the seed parent and the multiflora dad (incidentally almost pricker-less which multiflora hybrids sometimes exhibit).

I got several miniature seedlings from IcebergxOP this season, which I thought was unexpected.

All my other OP seedlings (Graham Thomas, Queen Elizabeth, Blueberry Hill, Pink and Burgundy Icebergs and Oklahoma) had no miniatures by comparison, although there were a few runts of course. :0)

Maybe as ‘Iceberg’ is apparently triploid, some of these selfed ‘Iceberg’ seedlings that appeared ‘mini’ when compared to their bigger sibblings were just in fact diploids?


Jadae wrote: “The lineage for Baby Faurax is unknown but suspected to be somehow related to Veilchenblau, a large rambler. So, who knows what is behind Baby Faurax and what it can fully do.”


“I have noticed that a lot of microminis are from mini + polyantha, so it makes me wonder if microminis (the healthy ones that are not just runted minis) are some sort compound of effects which we do not fully understand.”

I can confirm this.

I believe that it could be epigenetic effects or genetic overdosis effects due to more than once appearency of special alleles that effect for example some of the essential enzymes of the gibberelline pathway - or something similar in outcome, hitting the genetically determined growth program.



not “gibberelline pathway” - gibberellic acid pathway.


Hey Arno, thats great.

Seeing as this was brought up again… thought I’d update… I discarded all but the strongest one after about 4 months when it became obvious that they were all going to be large, thorny, once flowering, multiflora-like plants… no flower seen. Plant kept is also a thorny plant with multiflora features, 1.5m tall with about 10 arching canes now. Expecting it to flower in about 3 months as spring comes around. Very healthy and still fully leafed up. Not sure if the parent plant is ‘Baby Faraux’ or ‘Sweet Chariot’; it’s also quite thorny but is not more than 30cm tall and nearly three years old. Leaning towards ‘Sweet Chariot’. I have a named ‘Sweet Chariot’ and I can’t tell the difference. Sweetly perfumed the same as well. I have been told that ‘Baby Faraux’ is meant to be thornless, or nearly so.