Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Frankly Fabulous

I was looking for a red OGR.  One that didn't get too big.  The salesperson suggested 'Francis Dubreuil'.  Maybe.  Perhaps.  I hemmed and hawed.  I needed just the right rose.  Then she did the most wonderful thing.

She left for a few minutes.  When she returned, she had a bloom.  A beautiful, dark red, velvety, perfectly formed bloom.  But that's not what sold me.  When she handed me the rose, I knew it was 'The One'.  Because when she handed it to me, I of course did what everyone does when handed a rose - sniff it.  And the scent!  Oh, the scent!  Like delicate perfume.  I fell in love that instance.
"To be overcome by the fragrance of flowers is a delectable form of defeat."                                     -Beverly Nichols

Not only do I have Francis in my garden, but this is the rose chosen to plant at the cemetery, behind a black headstone. I am helping it become established, then I hope it lives for generations.

If you wish to plant a rose where it may not get proper care after becoming established, be certain you get an Old Garden Rose, or a rose that is not grafted, but grown on its own roots.  Ask if you're not sure.  If the rose is grafted, there is a possibility that in future years the grafted rose will take over, and you will have a different rose than the one you thought you were planting.
"Pleasure is the flower that passes; remembrance, the lasting perfume."                                - Jean de Boufflers

Every time I see Francis blooming, I have to walk up to it and take a whiff, and I fall in love all over again.  If you're looking for a fragrant rose, try Francis Dubreuil.  There are some that say this rose is truly 'Barcelona', so it may be sold under either name.
"That which we call a rose, By any other name would smell as sweet."                                       - William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet

Francis Dubriel grows to around 3 ft wide by 4 ft tall, and should do well in zones 6b through 9.  Francis is fragrant, floriferous, and frankly - fabulous!


  1. Very pretty and I can understand you getting this particular one.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

  2. In my other life (as an employee of a well known rose growing company here in Texas), gardeners told me Francis was their favorite as she wants no care. Fellow employees told me not to sell it because they could not grow it (but they took care of her!). The gardeners that wanted her knew her great attributes. I think she will be a perfect cemetery rose.

  3. It sounds delightful. What's the significance of the cemetery planting?

  4. All us zone fivers are sighing with happy envy! :)

  5. I have been looking for a scented rose that will thrive in the hot, dry Texas climate. Thanks so much for sharing all the info! Take care,

  6. Cher - I have been very pleased with it. It's been a great bush as well as a lovely flower.

    Tufa Girl - Your other life sounds very interesting! You must know so much about roses! I agree with the gardeners - very easy care.

    Marcia - The cemetery where most of my family is buried is an old country one. There is no regular maintenance, except mowing occasionally, and any plantings are done by family members. I wanted my children to know which rose this was in case they need to replace it at some time in the future, or get cuttings for future plantings. I suppose there's not a lot of cemeteries like that anymore.

    tina - It is as pretty as it smells, and the foliage looks great, too. I've learned the foliage on a rose is as important (really, more so!) than the bloom.

    Hanni - There's a lot of great roses you can grow that won't do well in our heat. But I know how disappointing it is when you see something enticing, then find out it's not right for your zone. Sorry!

    StoBlogger - I hope if you get Francis, that it does as well for you and that you love it as much as I do!

  7. Jest ładna i jeśli jeszcze pięknie pachnie, to nic więcej do szczęścia nie trzeba. Pozdrawiam

  8. I'm imagining the scent, and it's intoxicating! :) She's a beauty, too!

  9. The color is lovely, but I too would be sold on the scent. I too like the no care part and the small size.

  10. I love that rose too, it is wonderfully fragrant and reblooms well. You do know, don't you, that it is probably the hybrid tea "Barcelona" :) ?

  11. Giga - I feel very lucky to have found this rose, as I love it so!

    PlantPostings - It is intoxicating. The bloom the saleslady gave me, I carried around all day, just drinking in its sweet scent.

    GWGT - I was happy to know it wouldn't become a monster! I hope it continues to impress me as time goes on, but for now I am ecstatic about it.

    Masha - Yes, I know. But 'Barcelona' is still supposed to be vigorous and blackspot resistant, which is the main disease here. I had my doubts, but so far I've been very happy with it. A hybrid tea with fabulous foliage? I'm sold - OGR or no!

  12. He's so healthy in your garden. I'm pretty sure he wouldn't look that good here, sad to say.

  13. I think I can smell it from here. What a great story! Do you know what rose do they commonly graft to?

  14. thanks for a wonderful introduction to Francis D. The open face of a wild rose, the colour of vitality and a heady scent. Yes it should be growing long after we are gone.

  15. Sherry - You grow such pretty roses, you've obviously found the secret to growing them in Florida. I know it's been a challenge, given some of Florida's unique soil problems.

    Happy Homemaker UK - There are several different roses that are commonly used for grafts, and depending on the situation, a grafted rose may actually be preferred. The rose they choose to graft unto usually depends on which rose grows best in that particular climate. You can always ask the rose nursery where you're buying the rose. They should be able to point you in the right direction depending on your situation.

    PatioPatch - I really do hope so. It's amazing to me how delicate plants can be, but still so many of them live longer lives than we do.

  16. Great posting. Have thought about what to plant at a family plot overlooking the Hudson River against a very large black marble stone - love your suggestion...

  17. Sounds like a great rose for my grave site, along with "the fairy". he he

  18. Jayne - I think it would be beautiful. A red rose against black marble. Very classic. I hope FD does well for you.

    greggo - I'm thinking about this one for my gravesite, too! But, I'm in no hurry to purchase one!


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