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chameleon, my lovely

On 07, May 2012 | No Comments | In roses | By All Year Garden

Oh, how I love this rose! When I bought it it bore the name “Unknown”. After having it in the garden for several years I started to understand that the growers couldn’t figure out which of its many faces was the real one. Every year it bears different blooms. If you don’t believe me, check out the second, the third and the fifth images in the roses’ slide show.

This year it decided to show up as “Tuscany”, spicy clove scent included. It was quite a shock to peer out the window and see a deep velvety burgundy semi-double rose with bright yellow stamens in place of the red-magenta rose from last year. I’m not sure how this happens. First of all, I think it is now at least three different cultivars wrapped in one (it got hit by frost a couple of times, and shoots recovered, but from below the graft location. Maybe it was grafted more than once, crazy as this sounds.) So, now it has violet red blooms on a couple of canes, burgundy flowers on a few others, and the classic magenta on the remaining ones.

Last year I thought only Dr. Huey remained, phenomenon which had a very logical explanation, at least until “Tuscany” showed up.

The one and only time I saw it before it got hit by frost it had fewer flowers, but very large, open and bright red, they almost looked like poppies. Last year I was very excited to get a real “Tuscany” rose bush which unfortunately didn’t make it through the summer. I guess the faithful “Unknown” decided to surprise me.

Sometimes it looks like the roses I grew up with, the roses in my grandfather’s garden. Other times it’s fragrant and profusely blooming, like a romantic English rose. For a while I tried to find out what rose it was, but I gave up. How could I find out its name when every year it is a different rose?