As a bookend to my antique floral textile obsession…here are some early old roses. Amazing how they dress up the simple painter’s canvas thrown over the kitchen table. The earliest of my Bourbon roses: Madame Issac Perrier, Madame Ernest Calvat, Souvener de Malmaison, Deuil de Dr. Reynaud …and a glimpse at an early peony.
When I first planned my lower garden 20 years ago, I was enthralled by antique roses and tried
to pick a rose from virtually every classification: Damask, Gallica, Moss, China, Noisette, Bourbon.
A living link to history. I “pruned with a shovel” varieties that were dogged by mildew or rust or
blackspot…even if they had lovely names like Variegata de Bologna, Charles de Mills. Some like
Comte de Chambord just up and died on me. I finally honed in on Bourbons…because they
had all the looks and heavenly scent of 18th century roses with the bred in ability to rebloom.
Above are a few favorite 19th century Bourbon roses from this morning: Icy pink Souvenir de
Malmaison, deep pink Deuil de Dr. Reynaud, and striped Honorine de Brabant.
More on white roses soon…
A 19th century French sterling teapot and a garden grown bouquet
of old French roses with names like my favorite
Madame Isaac Pereire …
An intoxicating raspberry pink Bourbon rose
from the late 19th century…c. 1881
Madame Ernest Calvat c. 1888
Beyond her fragrance, huge pink cupped blossoms,
and repeat bloom, she has beautiful leaves
with a purplish tinge to them…
Honorine de Brabant
has lighter leaves, charmingly muddled rosy tones…
Other striped Bourbons are Varigata di Bologna and Commandant Beaurepaire
Forming an incredible bush of white roses
fronted by rosemary mid garden is ….
Mlle. de Sombreuil c. 1851
Deuil de Dr. Reynaud c. 1862
Being trained to cover, along with a grape vine,
one of four metal arches over a gravel garden path…
The Tea Noisette Gloire de Dijon c. 1853
Named after Empress Josephine’s garden
the Bourbon Souvenir de Malmaison c. 1843
is the most slightly tinged pink white cupped rose below…
He is doing such a wonderful service for us all in preserving antique roses so that we
can sink our face into the same bouquet that Josephine clipped from her Malmaison gardens…
If you want to help a business struggling in these times, preserve a bit of history,
and have decades of wonderful, intoxicating antique French roses in your home
for less than the price of a Diptyque candle…click below.
Vintage Gardens Mail Order
4130 Gravenstein Hwy. North Sebastopol, CA 95472