The Fairy Rose
The roses that fall into the Modern Rose division with the least pest and disease problems and the most floriferous show of color are the Polyanthas. A very popular member of this group is The Fairy rose, noted for its adaptability to most any garden situation since its introduction in 1932. The Fairy rose grows to 3 - 4 feet (1 meter) tall. The Fairy produces massive clusters of pink blooms on dark green leaves. It is an excellent rose for planting on a mound that focuses the design eye to one pronounced section of your garden. Unfortunately, Polyanthas as a group are weak on fragrance, and The Fairy is no exception.
Another Polyantha noted for its disease resistance is Perle d'Or rose. The Perle d'Or rose grows to 3 - 4 feet (1 meter) tall and produces a salmon colored bloom in large clusters. It performs well in the heat of summer, and is almost continuously in bloom.
No rose is perfect and Polyanthas are not without their limitations. Clotilde Soupert rose, a white with larger than normal blooms for a Polyantha, is infamous for balling in humid weather. This term balling is given to roses that tend to remain closed during high humidity situations such as rainy weather or high irrigation. The bloom tips can turn brown and resemble thrips invasion. When the weather dries, this rose performs well. But springs can be a real challenge. (By Fen Lugrin)