Two roses which always cause comment when we have visitors to the garden, are the huge “mulligani” which is climbing up the dead oak and the dainty “glauca” which has lovely coloured leaves. Rosa mulligani is the same as the one trained beautifully over the arbour in the white garden at Sissinghurst, and that is where we first saw it many years ago. Ours is a rampant monster which is allowed to do its own thing and the dead oak forms a wonderfully strong support.
Th flowers open a lovely deep cream colour and then fade to white.
There is a perfume, some say pineapple, some say banana, I couldn’t really say what I think it smells like, a mixture of the two maybe.
Rosa glauca, formerly rubrifolia ( much nicer name ) can be kept small by being pruned the same as hybrid teas or left to grow taller when it then arches gracefully over lower plantings, I have mine arching over in the border.
The flowers are small and single, very pretty, and these in their turn form hips which the birds love in the winter.
The foliage is absolutely stunning, such a lovely shade of blue/grey and sets off the tiny pink flowers beautifully.
These two roses are a complete contrast to all the David Austin roses that I have. I love both sorts but as these are also invaluable for wildlife, then I think these two have to come top of my list. Which sort of rose do you prefer I wonder?