What is it about roses that brings out gardeners' competitive natures? Like with growing giant pumpkins, it's all about winning awards. And to do this, people behead the roses and stick these big, bloated blowsy blooms in bud vases and somehow there is some criteria to compare and judge them?
For someone who hasn't grown any rose besides 'Westerland' (left) R. glauca, and R. mutabilis (below) for years, it's inexplicable. These roses grow happily with little intervention, have lots of character even if they lack perfection. Isn't the ruffled, fragrant fabulousness of roses enough without the shows and the medals?
I guess not. Vancouver B.C. hosted the joint World Rose Show and the World Rose Festival a couple of weekends ago. More than 1,000 roses were entered from around the world, with top honors taken by Japanese exhibitor Teizo Yoshiike. In his quest to win "Best In Show" Teizo even bought a seat on the airplane so his roses could ride in luxury from Japan to Vancouver. Is Christopher Guest paying attention to the movie possibilities here? I can't find a photo of the winning 'Tekone' rose...
Seattleites John and Caroline Fredette were first and second runners up for "Best in Show". The butter yellow 'Helmut Schmidt' (left) took second place honors; classic red 'Asso di Cuori' came in third. These are beautiful roses, but I can't get over the idea of the bloom being judged as an object all by itself, when really, isn't it all about growing roses as part of the garden? I fully expect to get sprayed with complaints here from dedicated rosarians - if so, could you also send me a photo and description of the elusive 'Tekone'?
Learn more at www.worldrosefestival.com