Glossary of Rose Terminology
Chatty summary of some useful rose growing language.
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Furthermore, while the rood system will not be as thick and heavy as it is on field-grown plants, the feeder-roots will be in-tact. In some cases this will mean that the rose will be doing as well or better by the end of the season as a is a field-grown plant. How the root trade-off works, container plants always have the advantage of extending the shipping time. Some companies will ship in May or even later.

Continuity of Bloom - Roses that produce flowers more than once in a season are said to be remontant. But some cultivars produce flowers over most or all of the season. Those that bloom without ceasing through the season are said to bloom continuously, or to have the highest degree of continuity. Those with gaps in their blooming cycles bloom less continuously and have lower continuity of bloom. This is a concept whose language isn't in broad circulation yet.

Cross - Refers to the fertilization of one species female gametes with the male gametes of a different species. In the animal kingdom, for instance, a mule is a horse crossed with a donkey. The whole thing can only work when everything has the correct number of chromosomes. The result is an individual having some mix of the qualities of both parents. When all goes well, the mix is favorable, the resultant individual inheriting the most desirable traits of each parent. When it doesn't, might say that in rose breeding, everyone has their own cross to bear.

Cutting - If one trims from a rose plant the last 10 inches of a new shoot, dips the end in rooting hormone, and plants the shoot in the soil that bit of shoot is said to be a cutting. The resulting roses are grown on their own roots. Cutting, the method of producing cuttings, is one of two popular ways of cloning rose cultivars. The other method is budding.

Alba - One of a group of Old Roses predating the introduction of China Roses into rose breeding. Albas are characterized by white or very light colored flat flowers and gray-tinged slightly wrinkled foliage that covers the plant densely. Making excellent shrubs, they are very disease-resistant cold-hardy, can often thrive where there is less than 8 hours of direct sunlight, and will do well on poor soils. The group includes Felicite Parmentier, Madame Plantier, and Madame Legras de St. Germain.

Bare Root - Roses go dormant during the winter - or in India during the heat of the summer. During dormancy, their rate of metabolism is low enough that they can be taken out of the ground and shipped without any soil around their roots. Such plants are bare-root plants. They can survive transid when the conditions for doing so are appropriate. When bare root plants have been field grown, they often have very well developed root systems which help them grow well in their new homes, but being removed from the ground invariably shears off most of the finest feeder roots. They always have the advantage that they are smaller and lighter to ship, but only in January, February, and March.

Black Spot - One of several fungal diseases that effect roses. Small black spots form on leaves, the leaves yellow and then fall from the plant. In warm, humid weather the problem is most likely to occur. Regular spraying with fungicidal soap or bicarbonate of soda will prevent the problem, but it's best to select cultivars that are not prone to it. Rosa foetida happens to be a very common ancestor to most yellow and red roses, passing to them the ability to create excellent warm colors. Unfortunately it has also passed to them the tendency to get black spot. Chinas, also pass the trait on, though a number of Chinas are quite immune. Thus it is an exceptional repeat-blooming red or yellow rose that manages to thrive unscathed by black spot.

Bed - A defined area in which flowers or vegetables are planted. In contrast to borders, beds often will contain all or mostly annual plants. And in contrast to borders, they will often be surrounded on all sides by paths or lawn. A bed is also an area dedicated exclusively to the cultivation of roses, usually Hybrid Teas.

Border - A defined area in which flowers and shrubs are planted; the term border and 'perennial border' are often used interchangeably. Usually at least one boundary of a border is a vertical surface, a wall, a fence, a hedge, a woodland, or a property line.

Roses for Every Garden