seedlings from 2006 crosses, winter survival report

Well, I was very pleasantly surprised when I inspected the rose beds today. Last fall I decided that I was not going to coddle my seedlings through the winter. I had mounded them with some compost and hoped for the best.

The Morden Sunrise x Home Run seedlings that I ended keeping last year all look like they made it through the winter without any problems. What is really quite surprising is that some of them appear to be more hardy than Morden Sunrise. Several of the seedlings have very green, healthy canes almost to the tip. MS generally has cane die-back about a third to half of the cane.

The Cal Poly x Home Run seedling that I was keeping also held up reasonably well. And the remaining Morden Sunrise x William Baffin seedling (non-climber) has absolutely no die back on the canes and looks like the buds are ready to pop any day now. I really hope that this one makes a decent seed parent. It was small enough last year that I did not let it set hips.

My first thought was that perhaps this was too mild a winter, but we had several periods of freeze-thawing until the snow finally decided to stick around. Gemini, Moonstone, Tournament of Roses, About Face, and The McCartney Rose all show the normal amount of winter damage, die-back to the compost mound. So, looks like the winter damage up here was about normal.

Now I just need to figure out what cross these with???


Liz, what zone are you in and what’s the coldest temperature you generally see in any given winter? Thanks …


I’m in zone 5b. Here are the monthly ranges for Guelph this winter. Sorry but they are in C. 0 F is -17.7C and 60 F is 15.5 C.

Dec 7.2C to -13.7C

Jan 13.3C to -16.6C

Feb 6.3C to -19.3C

March 11.9C to -16.9C


Thanks Liz … I’m in zone 3 Alberta and although we had a rather nice sunny mild winter, with a few nights of -40c tossed in there, anything the least bit tender is toast unless covered in a deep layer of snow! Here I must breed for extreme hardiness.


Yeah, -40C is a whole different story than my temps, Terry. Do you have the freeze-thaw cycles out there, or do you just hunker down for a long, cold winter? The Explorer roses do not seemed phased by my winters, but the Morden roses that I have tried do sustain winter damage, and the Buck roses are even more sensitive.


So, I take it ya’ll dont grow tea roses? :stuck_out_tongue:

Only as annuals!

Liz, Alberta is famous for its freeze-thaw cycles … heck, three weeks ago we were sitting out on the veranda soaking up the +13c temps, today it’s a cold snowy -3c. Many of the Explorer varieties do very well, though you never know when they might be knocked back by any one winter.

Jadae, at one time I had about 100 hybrid T’s and floribundas, these I’d heavily mulch for winter and most had done very well, though the work had finally done me in! I no longer have any, though will again plant several up against the south side of the foundation of my home, where they don’t require as much winter protection. Though, my goal is to breed very hardy varieties with similar traits to such roses … and I now have a few that are looking promising.


I have been successful in pollinating with purchased cut flower hybrid teas. Here are 2 examples:

Henry, if you ever do this again, you may want to try Leonidas, Sunny Leonidas, Terra Cotta and Charlotte. Theyre bred for garden roses (Peace, Peace, Peace and KArdinal 85, respecitively).


I’m on the north shore of Lake Ontario on the boundary of the old Cdn zone 5a/b. This is normally on the dry side of the lake effect so most years we get minimal snow cover. The temperatures tend to fluctuate from 10 - 20 degrees C between noon & overnight, so it puts a lot of stress on the roses. This year was the exception, with influences from the Missouri high, & other abnormal conditions, we got plenty of snow. I still have ice & snow, and puddles in my garden, so it’s too soon to say how most of my established roses did as it’s a bit too early to prune most of them and you can’t really see cane damage until you cut into the wood. But I’m noticing that my modern roses, that I normally have to prune to stubs. have more green than I’ve ever seen. The problem here isn’t the cold so much, but the fact that my backyard is former bog over Lake Ontario sand with lake rocks about a foot down. So it’s very soggy in the spring & takes a while to dry out. Soil that was brought in tends to deplete quickly. So each rose is planted with at least a half bag of compost to compensate. The soggy spring is very hard on plant roots, so most hybrid teas or modern roses don’t last long. I treasure the ones that survive. But the non-tea Sombreuil & Compassion from a cutting are long term survivors. Amazingly Fourth of July from a body bag, probably on Dr. Huey also does very well.

There was a lot of damage to the old canes of Prairie Dawn, but Chianti which normally is very tender & needs to be cut down every couple of years, appeared to have no cane damage. The same with Veilchenblau, but to be fair, I train it to sprawl along the ground. Out of Yesteryear had more green canes than Rugelda. Typically these two need to be pruned down to a couple of inches. I don’t see any breaking buds on r. Roxburghii. I’m wondering if all the canes are lost. I renewed it a couple of years ago & got a bumper crop of seeds last year. It’s surrounded by a good number of other diploids that it appears to appreciate.

There were a number of seedlings from last year that were either late germinators and too small, or not desirable for planting out. They were left in their small pots over winter to be disposed of later. They had frozen through & many were still stuck to the ground when I examined them last week, but they were still alive & exhibiting buds. Among them were seedlings of Calocarpa (amazingly hardy for a chinensis hybrid), Jeannie Lajoie, Mme Isaac Pereire, Carefree Beauty offspring, and 2 of Leibeszauber. Nice to know what survives.

Typically minis on their own roots don’t survive long. So I no longer buy minis that aren’t grafted. I once planted several plants of Vanilla Kordana in different spots in the garden & none survived. This year with the snow cover, I discovered live plants of Patsy, Yellow Mini Bright, Samba and Orange Kordana. Orange had canes that were as thick as those from hybrid teas.

Last year I got a plant that was supposed to be a double, maroon “Virginiana” - yes I know, wrong description, but I was intrigued. It’s blooms turned out to be single, fuchsia, spotted & fragrant, so I was happy. The leaves were glossy. It didn’t rebloom. I could see no growth on it this year, so I suspect it was done in by the drought. Happily, Samba was blooming at the same time, so I used the pollen on it. I’ve gotten 3 or 4 germinations, from it & two seedlings bloomed. Nice surprise. Both are deep red, no spots, one is fragrant & has produced it’s second bloom. The flowers are both large in relation to the seedling. Both are lax & look like they will be shrubby. The leaves are matte.

The following are seedlings that germinated last year & were planted out in the garden in the fall.

(White Nights x Chianti) non recurrent x Nova Zembla - no blooms last year

several op seedling of (White Nights x Chianti) x op - none bloomed last year

3 Reine des Violettes op seedlings - first time ever for ops fro RdV. No blooms last year.

Several op seedlings of Dr. Huey - no blooms last year (in my garden it’s a beautiful velvet maroon rose)

Several Jeannie La Joie ops - one survived in small pot over winter. It was too small to plant out, so I thought.

Nuites de Young x Prairie Dawn

Cream coloured Morden Fireglow op

Delany Sisters x Mme I. Pereire

Fourth of July x Apricot Beauty

Fourth of July x Scarlet Moss

Fourth of July x (Belle de Crecy x Red Flower Carpet)- this was striped, single, no fragrance with no OGR characteristics

several of (Belle de Crecy x Red Flower Carpet) x op

several of Hot Cocoa x Scarlet Moss

My Pink Nights x Apricot Beauty - no bloom last year

(I think “Pink Nights” is a seedling of White Nights, possibly by explorer pollen. It has a very double pink OGR style flower with excellent modern substance on a dreadful thorny plant that is not cane hardy, so when a cane survives, it takes two years to get a bloom. But the flower itself is wonderful. White Nights was a favourite mother for me, but unfortunately tended to produce non-recurrent seedlings) and a seedling from Mme Hardy x Apricot Beauty. Honest. Mme Hardy did not do well last year. I think she is more fertile when it’s cool. I have 4 seeds from last year that refuse to germinate.