Searching for Keith's Delight

Several years ago I purchased Ralph Moore’s Keith’s Delight from Sequoia. I loved the rose. It was healthy, had great repeat, and a very double yellow bloom. It did not prove to be a good female for me and I used the pollen to only a limited degree. Never expecting a California bred rose to be hardy in northern Wisconsin and very stingy about the greenhouse space allotted to non-female roses, I didn’t even try to test it for hardiness but instead passed it on to a friend who protects his roses in a root cellar. I was surprised to hear a year later that he had planted it outside (most of his roses are in containers)and that it had not only survived the winter here but it had bloomed exceptionally well the following summer. He loves the rose, too. I knew there is very diluted rugosa in its background, but the level of hardiness surprised me. I now wish I had it back as I have several seedlings from it (as the pollen parent) that have survived a couple years of culling. They have shown good disease resistance and decent hardiness. Does anyone know where I could get this rose? I sent an e-mail to Nor’East basically begging for one to use in hybridizing, but they never sent an answer and they are the only source I could find. My friend would share, but his plant was chewed to the ground by voles last winter. He’s pretty sure it will come back but it will take time. Are there any of you California people who might be a source or know where I can get one? Thanks.

Did you ask Burling?

I can try to root one for you if Burling does not have it.

Thanks Andrew. I followed Paul’s advice and contacted Burling. She is currently rooting some at her nursery–they are under mist–and she said they should be ready by June. I should be able to get one from her at that time but I appreciate your offer to help. Does Keith’s Delight do well for you? I’m curious to know how it does at other locations.

I find ‘Keith’s Delight’ to be extremely hardy and almost 100% Blackspot and Mildew free in my climate even when not sprayed. That puts it in the top 5% as far as disease resistance goes.

The pix on HMF make it look like a climbing mini more than it does a HRug. Rugelda is like 25% Rugosa, which makes Keith’s Delight about 12.5% if we were to pretend genetics divided evenly. The foliage looks nice and thick, though, which is often a good thing.

btw, how healthy is Rugelda for ya’ll? I stayed away from it because Robusta was both flesh ripping and blackspot prone (pretty blooms tho!). Based on the blooms and foliage on HMF, I can only assume it is a hybrid from the Kordes line of yellow rubiginosa hybrids. I am fairly sure that Aloha Hawaii from Kordes is a continuation of that line that includes Rugelda, especially given the code name, foliage and bloom form. So, Rugelda possibly has the strong climbing genetics common in rubiginosa descendants.

I find Rugelda completely healthy & blackspot free in my garden & it’s surrounded by other yellows, some of which do spot.

Has anyone had any success using the pollen from this one?

‘Keith’s Delight’ is highly fertile as both a staminate and pistillate parent. It is nearly as disease free as ‘Knockout’ in my experience.

From the wording on the universal names, in combination with internation patents, it seems suggestive that Rugelda is Bonanza x Robusta. So, in theory, it is highly possible that Keith’s Delight (1-72-1 x Rugelda) could also be stated as [(Little Darling x Yellow Magic) x (Bonanza x Robusta). That is a whole lot of random yellow climbing genetics thrown into one, lol.

Robusta itself is unique because it most obviously contains pelargonidin, which probably aids Rugelda in its retention of the fleeting yellow the Arthur Bell line has. From Kordes usual pattern, my first guess was that Robusta was bred from a tetraploid scarlet flori-shrub type. The ploidy was later found to be triploid, which reinforced my guess. It wasnt too wild of a guess for any of you that have done rugosa species/tetraploid crosses before. There is also the similarly bred in lineage and in time frame, Rheinaupark, which is Gruss an Bayern seeding x Rosa rugosa). The foliage looks highly similar to Robusta but it is difficult to assume much because rugosa x tetraploid crossed tend to be highly erratic. ie. rugosa x smooth mini can = immensely prickled beast. So I cannot assume that Robusta’s foliage texture, tone and propensity to blackspot comes from the highly similar and blackspot prone Gruss an Bayern. However, it is known to transmit the color depth of all 3 red types extremely well.

Personally, I think Keith’s Delight could yield promise to some and not to others, depending on locale. I am guessing it would yield better to areas of extremes. The lineage on both sides tend to follow that pattern widely. I think that Aloha Hawaii would prove more favorable universally. Keith’s Delight is probably more useful in areas that are more prone to mildew.

There is also Pink Robusta, which I am guessing it fertile? It is Queen Lucia of Light x Robusta, aka [(Zitronenfalter

Nope, sorry, I have never grown the rose. I know its namesake and won’t touch it. I do have a sister seedling Ralph gave me a long time ago if you want to try that. It’s totally clean here and flowers spring through fall. It sets fertile seed and its pollen works well. The flowers are smaller and it’s more a climber than the other. Ralph had a tall budded “tree rose” of this one at the nursery, up the row from the enormous Red Fairy tree and it was spectacular!

Rugelda seems a much better rose for more severe climates than mine. I only have one seedling from it I’ve kept and that is only because I like the foliage. All others have been garbage here. If the seedling is of interest, cuttings are available.

I’m not a huge fan of yellows staining pink, even less so of mauves which stain pink or red. It’s a very “dirty” look to me. I love Mutabilis as it’s earth tones and more “natural” so it isn’t offensive to my eye. Teas and Chinas are softer blushes than the modern versions and can slip by without offense.

The seedling was cute from what I could see.

1-72-1Rugelda looks exactly as I would imagine. It is definitely not for the west coast. The color is a nice shade though.

Jadae, don’t dismiss 1-72-1rugelda based upon my photos. The sole plant has been in the same five gallon can, with depleated soil, for several years. I don’t have anywhere to put it into the ground yet and since I have to cage the roots when I do, I’m not inclined to up size it. It IS a clean, healthy, productive plant which performed excellently in Visalia. It repeats as reliably as 1-72-1.


I like the pictures of 1-72-1Rugelda and if it would be possible to get cuttings next season of it I would appreciate it. I would try rooting it using the bag method that I’ve read about.


Rob, you are more than welcome to cuttings. PLEASE remind me when it’s time you can work with them. You may remind me at roseseek at america on line. Feel free to look at my list on HMF and anything not Paul’s, Jim’s or Robert’s that sounds interesting is fair game. Theirs require prior permission for me to send. Kim


Hi Kim,

It isnt personal. Roses from various breeders that revolve around certain lineages usually have traits that I negatively associate with really bad, unworkable blackspot conditions for Western WA/OR – basically the area of WA/OR that is green in any diection you look, year round. Little Darling, Goldilocks, Impatient, Robusta, Gruss an Bayern, Eyepaint, First Prize, several Scotch briar types – all from off the top of my head are often pattern origins for the specific type (Im guessing race) that will strip foliage off of a rose by June. I can predict it always, even with preventitive spraying. I can also predict the time span easily. And, so, I have learned to try my best to avoid these lines. It isnt like Silver Jubilee where the first generation may have some blackspot like SJ does, but then it disappears a generation later. It seems to require hard work or careful selections to weed it out. Its really frustraing because, for example, I absolutely love roses like Spanish Shawl, Disco Dancer and Joycie. I LOVE the colors and patterns they make, as well as their plant sizes/shapes. But I have to opt for the next best thing, which would be something like Inner Wheel, Livin’ Easy and Playgold. Playboy seems wonderful at breeding it out, despite its own flaws. I have no idea why. Likewise, I would love to know why Knock Out worked out so well. It makes me wonder how much was selection deducted by logic and how much was actual lineage.

What, no mention of ‘Anytime’ in there, Michael?!!! :wink:

Thank you Kim for your generous offer. I will contact you next season to give rooting some cuttings a shot.


You’re welcome Rob. I’ll look forward to it.

Jadae, I totally understand what you’re talking about. I love Playboy. It grew wonderfully in the Santa Clarita Valley until we changed the climate enough to make it a dawg. For all its great characteristics, it rusts as badly as Bourbons do here. Its children and grandchildren rust like crazy here. I’m surprised you couldn’t hear me groan each time Ralph showed me something else he bred from it and Angel Farts.

I try my best to avoid anything too closely related to New Dawn as they were too highly subject to Downey Mildew up there. I avoid Heirloom and anything looking as if it has ever known it because of black spot. (and puky colors)I’ve also resisted any of the Carpet roses because I’ve seen too many badly infected with gall. They died out from gall in one of my client’s garden. That did NOT sadden me, but it did give me an opportunity to remove roses from a too narrow strip and plant a short border of perennials which look better there and don’t bite when brushed against.

If it helps, right now all three major fungi have firm footholds here. It should be 86 today, dropping 15 degrees by Tuesday, and there is high humidity over night, drying up during the day. 1-72-1Rugelda and the Little Butterfly seedling with it are completely clean, though surrounded by spotty, rust, mildewy things.

I’ve also wondered how Knock Out could be so successful and widely praised for health. The initial, pre production plants sent to Clair at The Huntington were horrible. Black spot kept them defoliated and several died. Clair complained about them bitterly. I’ve seen them around but have never been tempted by them. They just don’t “speak” to me.


haha, Paul, I used to know this really nice gal from the Tualitin Valley Rose Society from when I was younger. She LOVED Anytime despite the fact that it was leafless, lol. She liked to make a pattern of Anytime and whatever hot red geranium she could find each May. To each their own. I actually thought it was kind of fun to watch every year. She had to have it perfect. She cared less that they were leafless, as long as they had blooms and the colors were present when she got home from work. I think she passed away last year. I’d mention her name but I really get uncomfortable mentioning personal names online. There is a chance you heard of her or her sister. They were pretty cool ladies.

I stayed away from Anytime with passion :stuck_out_tongue: Carrot Top was okay for a mini. The only pure orange mini that was bs tolerant for me was Ray Spooner’s Orange Class, which always got DQ’d at shows cause they’d put on my tags, “We need the name, not the class.” LOL! I think it is Touch of Class x Party Girl. The latter also defoliated. It probablyw ould have been a top exhibition rose if it was introduced when it came out. Unfortunately, Ray passed away right before its physical introduction. I had a copy but I was like… 16? or something like that. Jerry Justice passed away a year later, and they were mortal enemies because they competed with each other directly, lol. I am not sure anyone would have introduced it regardless due to the business then. It was later picked up by Heirlooms about 2 years ago, where it was renamed Orange Classic. It was beyond its time by then. It is fairly much sterile but oddly free of blackspot. I noticed Ray loved to use a lot of mildew prone roses in his hybrids. It is fairly common for mildew prone types (like Touch of Class) to be used in the area because mildew is mostly a non-issue on most roses, so they in turn are useful. I am glad exhibition form is losing favor.

As much as I loved folks like Ray, it makes me happy to see healthy, no-spray types in peoples yards. Granted, roses like Flower Carpet Amber are the new mini in peoples yards, but at least they’ll never know the likes of Funginex. I remebmer a group of exhibitors getting together and ordering it from orchard sprayers because it became a Restricted Use Product in Oregon. I was thinking to myself, “Seriously? It can melt plastic…AND EYES!!!” No joke – it can lol. Death in a bottle – $8.99 per season :slight_smile: I wish I knew the orchard sprayers name. I would have turned him in. He or she gave their faith to the same things I did, with some variations between commercial vs crop, so I know s/he broke some nasty laws just so people could show roses.