Prairie Hardy Roses
Roses Bred by Buck
AbeDarbyTrim Phot

Griffith Buck was a professor at an Iowa agricultural university during the 1970's and '80's and he observed how woefully inadequate the California-based breeding programs were for meeting the needs of rose lovers on the plains. The commercial offerings typically posessed neither adequate cold hardiness to endure the bitter plains winters nor the resistance to fungal disease roses require to thrive in the damp northern plains summers. He set to work developing roses that would avoid both these problems. The list of roses bred by Buck is very long, perhaps mounting up close to a hundred cultivars. But these are a few that strike one as being exceptionally good looking; and many are reasonably well distributed. Fortunately there has been a strong resurgence of interest in his roses. This bodes well for the future of low-maintenance roses in North America.

Carefree Beauty I have seen trained as a six foot tall shrub in a local park. At full bloom it was quite impressive. Folksinger reaches almost six feet in height and a little more than half that wide. It bears it roses at the ends of canes, near eye level. One could wish that it were just a tad shorter or better branched, but it is well covered with foliage and this complements the flowers that are latte colored just tinged with apricot. One wonders whether it might benefit as do several of Austin's roses from pegging or 'self pegging' to promote development of blossoms along the canes. Hawkeye Belle is knee high. It is very well branched and quite foliferous, bearing pale pink flowers whose petals form hundreds of concentric rings. They fade and get muddled. Both effects are pretty. Of the others, I have only seen some photos; but I am interested in trying them. There is some question in my own mind about whether cold hardiness has come at the expense of fragrance, and I hope to prove this hypothesis wrong quickly.

RoseFile Database.

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Cultivar Class Color FragranceBreeder Hardiness
Modern Shrub
Candy Pink
Strong
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Pink
Moderate
Buck
Zone 3
Modern Shrub
Primrose
Moderate
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Candy Pink
Strong
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Pink
Moderate
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Rose
Moderate
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Tawny Blend
Strong
Buck
Zone 4
Hybrid Tea
Pink
Strong
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Pale Apricot
Moderate
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Coral/Gold Blend
Moderate
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Pale Pink
Moderate
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Crimson
Moderate
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Pink / Yellow
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Cerise
None
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Primrose
Moderate
Buck
Zone 4
Hybrid Tea
Rose
Moderate
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
White
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Buff
Strong
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Red/Yellow Blend
Slight
Buck
Zone 4
Modern Shrub
Apricot
Buck
Zone 4
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Roses for Every Garden