Working with the old Chinas, anyone?

Specifically, have any of you fiddled with ‘Slater’s Crimson’, ‘Cramoisi Superieur’ or ‘Martha Gonzales’? It is stated that ‘Slater’s Crimson’ is a triploid, but I can’t find any info on the other two. Many of these old “pure” Chinas are diploid, are they not?

I’m thinking about working with some of these to work into my diploid breeding lines to add some color. Opinions, ideas, anyone? Your thoughts are very much welcomed.

PS: I also have

‘Eblouissant’ has been on my list to acquire too. I’d love to know more about it’s disease resistance.

Someone at HMF rated it “fair”, which scare me a bit.



I’ve only ever grown it in the greenhouse in a pot, and that’s not a good way to evaluate a plant for garden performance, as you know. It mildews badly under glass (well, in my case, plastic) and always seems a bit anemic, but grows well and is a rich color. I suspect it would be a far better plant grown outdoors in the open air.


Thanks Paul. PM is a deal breaker for me, even under greenhouse conditions. I’m on the hunt for a few really clean remontant diploids.


The rose that I’ve bought as Slater’s Crimson China twice from different sources has been my weakest red china. It’s currently dead and it’s place is being filled with a nicer red. SCC was temperature weak and fungus weak.

Martha Gonzalez is a funny bird; deep red blooms and it has made o.p. seeds in an area of the garden surrounded by chinas and noisettes. It can survive, but not thrive in acidic red clay; I’d guess that its home in Texas was more alkalin and loamy.

Of my red chinas, the best o.p. seed setter has been White Pearl in Red Dragons mouth. It’s been a consistant good grower, it survived the late Easter freeze two years ago when others whimpered.

There are two other real reds that I’m trying right now, but I’ve nothing on them yet.

(I did have Ebouissant, but my DH was weeding and it had only been in the ground three weeks…and by the time I realized where he’d been helping, he’d also mowed over the ‘weeds’ he’d pulled.)

Hi Ann,

‘Slaters’ does quite well here and shows reasonable hardiness for me. Its not my #1 choice because of its ploidy, but I may have a go at it anyway, to see what comes. I’d rather start with ‘Cramoisi Superieur’, which I don’t yet have. Thanks for the info.



I might have a plant that would be of interest to you; its a self seedling from 0-47-19 that is almost certainly diploid. (haven’t had it tested yet, but when diploid pollen is put on it, the offspring have tested diploid) Its a compact 2’ X 2’ bush, twiggy, with continuous bloom. Flowers are 1" and 5 to 8 petals, deep pink/magenta and sometimes purple/magenta, and quite fragrant. It sets seed readily. It gets no mildew either in or out of the greenhouse (I have two plants) and is highly resistant to Blackspot. It never gets Rust. I can send you pollen in a few weeks and make you a copy later this Summer if you are interested.


‘Slater’s Crimson’ and ‘Cramoisi Superieur’ are said to be triploid. I don’t know about ‘Martha Gonzales’.

I got ‘Cramoisi Superieur’ and ‘Purpurea’ last fall with the intention of breeding with them. Both have been healthy so far. They both have buds at the moment. Few other roses are in bloom yet, so I may try crossing them with each other.

Hi Paul, I’d love to try your 0-47-19 self when you can get it replicated. Pollen would be great too. I can let you know when we’re getting close tot he time it will be needed.

Thanks, Robert

Ive been trying with Sanguinea. I know now, at least, not to use it as a seed parent. It seems to be capable as a pollen donor, though, so we will see. The main problem is that I have very few diploids to try it with – other than the usual suspects.

Anyone used Mutabilis?


It’s been a few years, but I am in down in TX and Martha Gonzales was not fertile for me - I’m not a master pollinator, but I suspect that it is a triploid - probably some old red china and rootstock wild multiflora cross - a fine tough old gal for the heat, but not much for the hybridizer that I could see…


Mutabilis is reliable for pollen, unreliable for seed, at least for me. It will set hips but germination isn’t reliable.

Mutabilis will mildew here when things are at their worst.

Mutabilis seeds seem to want a long refrigeration, but germinate in the fridge when they are ready to go.

Hi Paul

Have you considered using Louis XIV? I tried this several years ago and found it passed on its deep colour very easily and many seedlings were nicely scented. Not too far removed from the china’s. Possibly not diploid?

"Mutabilis is reliable for pollen, unreliable for seed, at least for me. It will set hips but germination isn’t reliable. "

This is what I’ve noticed too… I’ve been watching for OP hips this year and so far NOTHING… I love the colour changing trait though… would love to put it with a Tea to see how that would look.

‘Louis XIV’ isn’t really a China. I think it was classified that way because of it’s growth habit. It’s actually a dwarf Hybrid Perpetual, likely tetraploid.

I’ve got a seedling coming along from it now. I must have been bored the day I made the cross because Louis XIV is not something I would concentrate on. I have noted that it sheds a great deal pollen. It is an amazing color and I love the fragrance.

Sometimes these things just work for one reason or another. The cross is, International Herald Tribune x Louis XIV. It will probably be PINK.

I won’t use Mutabilis because it has rarely given me seeds (as a pollen parent) in the past, and it has a history of breeding single pinks, which I don’t want. I doubt Louis XIV is right for me either, because as Robert pointed out, its not a China, and its likely Tetraploid.


what makes you think Martha Gonzales might have R. multiflora in it??? I see none of those characteristics in mine at all.



Paul, I used Mutabilis pollen on Amber Cloud and got some vigorous seedlings, non remontant, at least yet. I hope I get flowering this Spring.

Have you thought about using ‘Gloire de Rosomanes’?

I suppose there’s always ‘Sanguinea’ as Jadae suggested? It appears to be the same as Miss Lowe and paossibly Bengal Fire.



Yes, I have ‘Gloire de Rosomanes’, but will use it sparingly, as it is a triploid. Using it in breeding helped spawn a race of tetraploids, so I suspect it leans towards doing this, which I don’t want. I’ll try it on a few things and see what comes.


I’ve got some pretty good seedlings from

Mons. Tillier X Mutabilis


Danae X Mutabilis