by Gaye Hammond, Houston Rose Society
In the South we have questioned whether Buck roses will withstand the heat, drought and humidity that our geographic region experiences. Efforts are presently underway by Texas A&M to test 30 Buck cultivars in the first national EarthKindTM trial. Regardless of the outcome of those trials, there is one Buck cultivar that has been grown successfully in the South since 1977. That rose is Carefree BeautyTM (formerly known as Katy Road Pink). Carefree BeautyTM is highly disease/pest resistant and produces spectacular medium pink blooms even when temperatures top 100 degrees. Carefree BeautyTM was one of the first roses to receive Texas A&M's EarthKindTM designation and will be one of the 30 roses included in the national EarthKindTM trials.
Buck roses which have Carefree BeautyTM in their immediate heritage are: Bright Melody, BUCroo, BUCred, Country Song, Folksinger, Gentle Persuasion, Golden Unicorn, Paraglider, Piccolo Pete, Prairie Clogger, Prairie Harvest, Prairie Squire, Rural Rythym and Serendipity. Of this group of roses, Folksinger, Golden Unicorn and Prairie Harvest are showing promising results and are being researched in the national EarthKindTM trials.
Texas field trials on 80 of the Buck cultivars have been ongoing for several years. Twenty-two cultivars have thus far shown excellent results for Southern gardens and more are being added each year as evaluations continue. These cultivars include: Barn Dance
Carefree BeautyTM (a/k/a Katy Road Pink),
All of these roses tend to tolerate our heat with minimal adverse effects. All of these 11 cultivars (as well as other Buck cultivars) are available for purchase from Chamblee's Rose Nursery, www.chambleesroses.com or by telephone at 800/256-7673.
Not all of Dr. Buck's roses are going to adapt to our Southern climate. Those cultivars which have adapted give outstanding performance from plants with tremendously strong genetic foundations. As our research continues, additional Buck cultivars suitable for Southern gardens will be identified. As a member of the Houston Rose Society, you will be the first rosarians in the country to receive the results of this research.
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