Friday, December 19, 2008

Learn about roses through other rose bloggers

The web is a great place to learn more about the Rose!

Visit my twitter page at - it is a lot of fun and a great spot for light chatter about roses.

Another example is Carolyn Parker's Rose Notes, a newsletter/blog full of beautiful photos and news about the rose world.

The World Rose Festival has it's e-newsletter - visit its website to subscribe!

It is getting close to Christmas - make sure to include some wonderful red roses on your dinner table!

Name a Rose!

Have you ever wondered how roses get their names or wanted to name one after a loved one? Often referred to as one of the most unique gifts imaginable, having a rose named after someone is truly special way to immortalize a special person in your life. The process of having a rose named in itself is actually very simple. The real difficulty is in hybridizing a rose that's worthy of naming!

For Details on Rose Naming, visit the website of Select Roses at WWW.SELECTROSES.CA on rose naming to the left. You will find some pics of new Hybrids up for naming and information on the breeding and selection proccess.
I will be featuring some of my latest hybrids at the 2009 World Rose festival. You wont want to miss the Flower event of the year! Tickets for the World Rose festival would make excellent Holiday gifts.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tickets on sale now

Visit to buy your tickets online. Buy early and save... a great Christmas gift idea!

Advance Ticket Sales (up to Thursday, June 18, 2009)
Adult $18.00
Three Day Pass $49.00
Group (min. 20 tickets) $16.00

Note: Tickets purchased online are subject to an administration fee of $2.38 and will be mailed to you at the address provided when purchasing your ticket/s. Tickets purchased as of June 13, 2009 will be picked up at the door.

You can also buy your advance tickets in person at one of many fine garden centres or florists.
  • Garden Works, 8 locations in Greater Vancouver (Burnaby, North Vancouver), the Fraser Valley (Mission) and Greater Victoria (Saanich, Oak Bay, Colwood)
  • Country Garden Store, 10015 Young Road North, Chilliwack
  • The Avant Gardener, 1460 Marine Drive, West Vancouver

Monday, December 8, 2008

Roses heading into Winter!

Brrrr! I just came in from the garden and for the first time this year I think winter is setting in. I know I know, but hey the roses get to have a much needed rest while the weary gardener gets to enjoy some fireside book reading. On that note, I wanted to show you a couple of my last roses for the 2008 season. I can't believe how some of these girls have held their late season blooms until early December! That is a true testament to the versatility of one of natures greatest plants.

"Dublin Bay", one of my long-time favorite red climbers, flowers from spring until well past frost! I have another photo to show you later that has Dublin Bay flowering with snow in the blossom. I think this is what they call a weather-proof rose! wink.

I'm pleased to see that Terri Clark, one of the guest writers of my blog, mentioned the wonderful David Austin rose "Jude The Obscure". I have to agree with Terri that she is a superb garden rose. My plant is still covered with thick green foliage and not a black-spot on a single leaf this late in the season! Its flowers are a distant memory but I can still smell her sweet lustful fragrance in the air. Gosh that is one nice garden plant!

This soft yellow rose is actually very orange during the normal growing season but in December this "Octoberfest" rose changes its hue. She is a super robust, easy-to-grow, plant and one you would just love if you enjoy cutting your roses. My 3 first year plants in the new bed grew about 4 feet tall in year one and produced over 40 roses each plant. Mom loves this one.

Gift Certificates!
Select Roses is closed for the season but I would be happy to meet with anyone that is interested in Gift Certificates for garden lovers on their holiday shopping list. Just give me a call or email at to arrange for an appointment.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Thomas Hobbs' Seasonal Rose Picks

From guest writer Terri Clark

Vancouver’s own garden guru, nurseryman and best selling author, Thomas Hobbs, revealed his rose-related roots in the floral trade when recently asked about holiday displays and gift ideas. Diligently multi-tasking in his super stylish gift store Hobbs, he rattled off his rose favourites for the festive season while expertly putting the finishing touches of imported ornaments on a divine copse of bare branches.

“If you are looking for a gift certificate of rose types my absolute no-fail favourites right now are the new shrub type roses from David Austin.” Pick number one is Rosa ‘Jude the Obscure’ .Even Thomas Hardy would have to agree that this medium yellow, highly fragrant and repeat bloomer fits the gift bill nicely whether in the hilly Dorset landscape or in a diminutive Vancouver garden. Rose selection two is called ‘Teasing Georgia’, a multi-petal, cupped flower that is a saffron yellow in the centre fading to the softest moonlight hues on the outer fringes. Strongly scented and a good grower, who could ask for more? “I sell thousands of roses every spring at my nursery Southlands and these two rose varieties fall into the no fail category and give great customer satisfaction.”

As for some old standards that have stood the test of time, Tom easily identified roses including the white Sally Holmes, Golden Wings and the deeply apricot coloured Leander.

And what does the famous Thomas Hobbs suggest for those of us wishing to create our own special “rose bowl” for the holiday table? “I would stick to a range of colours for interest such as salmon pinks mixed with coral oranges adding some artfully placed hypericum berries. Simple but beautiful, just like Nature itself.”

We couldn’t agree more!

Southlands Nursery – 604-266-6411
Hobbs Gift Store – 604-261-5998

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Gift of Christmas Roses

From guest writer Terri Clark

It’s hard not to be disheartened by the headlines over the past months and with the normally over-abundant Christmas season looming just around the corner many thoughts are turning to more affordable gift purchases this year. Being the child of Depression era parents I was raised to give practical but thoughtful gifts, ones that either fed the stomach or touched the soul.

A display of fresh roses during the holidays can never go wrong. Most florists and floral designers will be more than happy to take one of your sparkling cut glass or silver vases or bowls and fill them with a scented gift of greenhouse grown roses. Not only will this save on cost but the roses will convey the giver’s good thoughts in two sensorial ways- through fragrance and visual beauty.

Truly what can be more simple and elegant that a shimmering bowl full of roses amidst candle light on a dining room table, mantel or an aromatic nosegay at your bedside? The hip new Madison Avenue-style Quince Fine Florals in Vancouver’s MacKenzie Heights shopping district is using roses in an array of new ways. Last year’s Christmas craze starred the previously much maligned garnet-coloured carnation whose densely positioned heads covered orb-shaped oasis which were then displayed on large glass flutes. This year rose heads and hips will be featured not only in delightful balls but in artfully fashioned mini pillow-like wreaths and centerpieces for the home’s interior spaces.

For the garden rose lover, now is the time to discover those rare outdoor plants that are still giving their blooms even during the darkest months. What better gift than a nursery gift certificate from Select Roses for, say, Rosa Mutabilis, a species plant that has never failed to produce enough single blooms to be placed on my holiday table’s crisp linen napkins.

And for the real rose aficionado in your life, excellent stocking stuffers should include tickets to the World Rose Festival in Vancouver June 19- 21, 2009. This cornucopia of rose related events will include an internationally attended rose show, rose lectures, garden displays, marketplace, culinary treats, art and more.

What better way to say “Merry Christmas” throughout the year!

Ticket information for the World Rose Festival:

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Marketplace Exhibitor Special - Until December 3, 2008

Are you a former VanDusen exhibitor or sponsor? Sign-up to participate at the World Rose Festival! Don’t miss your June show due to the cancellation of VanDusen.

VanDusen Special - from 3 Nov – 3 Dec 2008

Exhibit Space at VanDusen prices*

*Proof of 2006/07 VanDusen exhibitor/sponsor agreements required

*Limited quantities available

Contact Jacque Pitts, Festival Sponsor and Exhibit Manager, for more information.

Friday, November 7, 2008

A few great roses this Fall!!

Hey Everyone! Gosh I have been so busy its been a while since posting. I will do my best to keep up the writing.

This fall has been a superb rose year in my garden and I just had to tell you about a few that were still flowering this first week of November. If it wasn't for the heavy rain, the blooms would have opened better but I did manage to sneak a few buds into the house and I'm enjoying the last rose fragrance of the season. If you are familiar with some of my favorite roses you will probably know the ones I'm talking about but for those of you that are new to my favorite roses, here is a few fall 08 winnners!

Julie Child. This is simply the best yellow floribundas I have ever grown! It's an amazing garden plant, outstanding healthy foliage and a flower power to match. I love the unique licorice fragrance. Everyone that plants one of these babies just raves about it! Julie bloomed from spring until fall this year, never out of flower and ohhh that yummy scent! This is what modern roses CAN be.

Summer Memories! and sweet ones they were. This is a new German Bred rose from the great Kordes breeding firm and falls into the "Fairy Tale" group of roses. They are known for amazing resistance to disease, ease of culture and winter hardiness. I LOVED the foliage on this rose, the charming old fashion looking flowers and that sweet almost fresh apple scent was very pleasing. Mom said it was such a crisp fresh looking rose! I agree - a real winner that kept on performing until fall.

"2009 Brad Jalbert Hybrid"
This is one of my new floribundas that has done outstanding in all out test trials! She grows with amazing vigour, well branched and has never been bothered by Blackspot or Powdery Mildew. Our Field plants were the best looking roses we had this year and I'm just so excited to see it introduced in 09. The naming and promo information on this beauty is top secret right now so I can't tell you more! Every one one of our test growers has sent in glowing reports on this variety. From what I have seen, it is the best floribunda in its colour glass. The flowers have a nicely formed bud, and open cleanly to reveal a nice boss of gold stamens. Her flowers held up great in the fall rains and as of today, November 7th, there is not a sign of Blackspot on the foliage! I'm one proud daddy here.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Roses on ice

From guest writer Terri Clark

You may think that the coming winter weather means an end to enjoying the blessings of the sultry season and all that the flower garden had to offer. But that would be wrong because even when we are months past the “realm of the rose”, the fall harvest includes this metaphor most popular for love, in a most curious culinary way.

It has often been said that great gardeners are usually great cooks - being a natural transition from veggie patch to the kitchen door. After all, this is where kitchen gardens got their name. But garden herbs and flowers have also long been pressed into service for medicinal purposes and sur la table.

I am what my grandmother used to call an “old fashioned girl”, a culinary throwback who spent many teen years, not collecting every Rolling Stones and Beatles album, but rather learning how to cook at the hip of the Galloping Gourmet after school. Later I graduated to the gospel of my “true” kitchen mother, Julia Child, who spiced up her presentations with frequent allusions to cookery methodology long past.

In short, cooking and then gardening became a passion fitting together like the proverbial hand and glove. About this time, my fascination with Victorian molds took hold. I scoured old book stores for bespoke recipes and antique shops for the elegant and functional molds, contraptions in shapes both classical and bizarre.

Finally I found a small volume entitled Victorian Ices & Ice Creams with 117 original recipes first printed in 1885 under the title The Book of Ices by that marvel of London ice queens Agnes B. Marshall. Discovered between this volume’s pages is an era when almost anything that was edible, fruit or vegetable, could be re-imagined as glorious sorbets, mousses, iced soufflés and ice creams.

With today’s wide variety of ice cream machines, there is so little effort in these recipes that the drama is often left to the mold. Even a simple container can offer an impressive presentation when released onto an elegantly tiered cake plate or serving platter.

So as you are planning your trip to Vancouver’s World Rose Festival, why not put this little tasty treat on your menu while rose leaves are still clinging to the vine (remember not to use leaves that have been sprayed with any pesticides).

Rose Water Ice

Take a half pound of fresh-gathered rose leaves; pour 1 pint of boiling water on them with 4 ounces of sugar and keep closely covered for about 5 minutes. Then strain off and colour the flavoured water with a little liquid carmine (natural colouring available at specialty stores). Freeze in a conventional ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s directions.

Ices are perfect as course palette cleansers at a special dinner party or great thirst quenchers on a hot day.

Recipe from Victorian Ices & Ice Creams
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Charles Scribner’s Sons

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Floral designer falls under the spell of the "black rose"

From guest writer Terri Clark

Ask Jessica Blossom Clark what her prospective brides are mad about these days and she’ll give you a short answer. “There are those few brides who step outside the box when it comes to a bouquet for her special day but invariably roses play a starring role.” Clark is the new owner and operator of an elegant store located in Vancouver’s residential area of Mackenzie Heights called Quince Fine Florals.

Trained as a young teenager when Clark volunteered under the tutelage of ThBlack Baccaraomas Hobbs, she later worked for Hilary Miles and the floral guru to New York’s best celebrations, Charles Mason in Manhattan. When asked which roses are her preferred choices for stylish bouquets, she does not hesitate. “Black Baccara – really a dark crimson colour with a velvety texture and a moderate size bloom. It is a perfect foil to other shades.” Other roses that are on Clark’s fav list include the ever popular white Avalanche and the two-toned orange of Cherry Brandy.

Note: Black Baccara, long grown for only the florist trade is now available through the nursery trade for home gardens. It is a hybrid tea long stem rose.

Monday, October 6, 2008

When “big hips” are great!

from guest writer Terri Clark

We all have heard that old saying “a moment on the lips, a life time on the hips” but there is one area where over indulgence does not apply to a hefty hour-glass figure– when it refers to roses. Everyone knows that the rose appeals on a variety of levels either through numbers of petals, blossom shape, colour and, most sensuous of all, scent. But how many of us fully appreciate the stunning second act of the species roses where before the season’s curtain call they take a final bow in the guise of beautiful hips.

Rose hips have long been the subject of apothecary lore and delicious foodstuffs but now we can appreciate these seed heads as an added bonus to the garden landscape, especially if we are not too assiduous in the pruning department.

Every garden can have at least one rose bush that produces showy hips, perfect foils for the cooler landscape and wonderful grist for the mill when it comes to making seasonal wreaths and arrangements to brighten the darker months.

When you purchase rose bushes this fall, be sure and ask who has the biggest hips and enjoy them while not adding one ounce to your own!

Pictured at the left are the elongated, flagon-shaped orange hips from the vigorous Rose moyseii. Though a vigorous plant with almost single smallish blooms, this beauty shines in two seasons and is often preferred for their delectable hips.

Another good selection for showy hips is the hardy, easy to care for and very scented Rose rugosa. Pictured to the right, the globular tomato-red hips of R. rugosa ‘Frau Dagmar Hartopp’ whose pink flowers keep producing through the summer yielding a pleasing mix of hips and blooms in unison on the bush.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Fall Roses

September is one of my favourite months of the year. I just love the vibrant colours of the late flowering roses and always enjoy the deep rose fragrances that seem more pronounced when temperatures have cooled.

Why Fall Plant Roses?

Did you know that just a few decades back about 95% of roses bushes sold were planted in fall and winter? The reasons are obvious.
  1. Fall planted roses are busy plants! They spend our mild coastal BC winters growing feeder roots that establish the plant and improve next seasons growth.
  2. You can buy more roses with the same BUCK! Fall container roses are often on sale, and true bare-root roses are less expensive than potted spring roses, since we don't have to buy pots and soil for them.
  3. You get to enjoy winter looking at your dormant roses and knowing they will bounce into growth when spring arrives!
  4. Fall roses have better growth, more disease resistant foliage in the first year and often more and larger flowers.
  5. You can buy more roses with the same BUCK! Fall container roses are often on sale, and true bare-root roses are less expensive than potted spring roses, since we don't have to buy pots and soil for them.
  6. You save loads of time chasing after hoses and watering roses since mother nature is doing that work for you.
So get shopping!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Welcome to a Rosy Blog by Brad Jalbert

Welcome Welcome Everyone! My name is Brad Jalbert and I will be your host until the World Rose Convention and Festival 2009 in Vancouver, BC. I have a tremendous love and passion for gardening with a special place in my heart for roses. Why roses, people often ask? It all started many years back with a discarded rose. That one rose bush so many years ago ignited a passion within me that was to become my life. I've always felt that roses were such a simple and easy plant to grow. As a young gardener I had not yet been polluted with the ridiculous ideas about rose growing. I bought rose bushes, I planted them, I watered them and they rewarded me with amazing flowers and fragrances.

I'd love to share some of my experiences and love for roses with you . It would be great to hear about yours! Let's start by asking anyone out there to tell me about their favorite rose and why they love it so much!

Hope to see many of you at the 2009 World Rose Convention! WowWowWow
Brenda? Alec? are you out there, lets hear about your Favorite Rose! ( wink).
What do you think of the purple text? too much? Well, one does need a hint of colour!


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