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Hybrid Perpetuals
One of the parents of our modern Hybrid Teas.
[From Phillips & Rix, The Quest for the Rose, p. 90:] Hybrid Perpetuals were the result of an attempt to combine the large flowers and rich scent of the Gallica Roses with the perpetual flowering of the Chinas. The forerunner of this class was 'Rose du Roi', a seedling of the Portland rose raised in France in 1815. The true, large-flowered Hybrid Perpetuals, or Hybrides Remontant as they were called in France, were first raised by Laffay at Auteuil, starting with 'Princesse Hélène' in 1837. He crossed Hybrid Chinas with Portlands and Bourbons and produced a proportion of repeat-flowering roses; the recessive, repeat-flowering genes were present in both parents.

Hybrid Perpetuals have huge flowers on strong shoots and inherited rather short flower stalks from the Portlands, so that the flowers sit down among the leaves. Most are red, pink or white. No yellows were ever raised. The great years of the Hybrid Perpetuals were between 1858 and 1899 after which, like the Tea Roses, they lost popularity to their descendants, the Hybrid Teas.



In "A Survey of Hybrid Perpetuals," American Rose Annual (1951) at pp. 205-216, the author describes the growth habit and appropriate pruning -whether high, low or mediium - of more than 100 Hybrid Perpetuals.


[From Old Roses and English Roses, by David Austin, p. 96: Hybrid Perpetuals represent] the final stage of development of the rose before arriving at the Hybrid Teas … the Hybrid Perpetuals can best be described as an idea rather than as roses of any definite origins. They are, in fact, an amalgamation of various roses with certain objectives in view -- for it is at this stage that large-scale breeding comes into its own -- with breeders raising numerous seedlings in the hope of arriving at an ideal … the Hybrid Perpetuals are repeat flowering, but they are rather clumsy and their growth too tall, narrow and upright, making them unsuitable for use as shrubs in the garden... [development of the Hybrid Perpetuals] was in no small degree due to the advent of the rose show... Roses were exhibited in boxes in which six or more blooms would be placed at equal distances in order to show each of them individually. So keen was the competition that it resulted in a tendency to breed for exhibition only, and the flower as a bud became the exhibitor's ideal... attention was centered on the flower alone; habit of growth was ignored...


[From Gardening with Roses, by Judith McKeon, p. 27:] Introduced in the 1830s, hybrid perpetuals were bred from a complex mingling of the China-influenced classes and old European roses. The hybrid Perpetual became the favorite flower of the Victorians and reigned as queen until the twentieth century, when it was succeeded by the hybrid tea rose.. the shrubs are not continuously in bloom [however] many cultivars produce late-summer flowers... prone to diseases... hardy to Zone 5.


[From Roses, by Eleonore Cruse, p. 10:] Hybrid Perpetuals are very prone to fungal diseases. [ed. Not true in this grower's experience.]


[FromThe Graham Stuart Thomas Rose Book, p. 139:] breeders looking back on ['Rose du Roi' (1819)] dubbed it the first Hybrid Perpetual. In 1859 'Victor Verdier' appeared, and this has sometimes been called the first Hybrid Tea. From this and 'La France', raised in 1867, a small group of varieties were raised, carrying strong Tea influence into the Hybrid Perpetuals.


[Ibid, p. 316:] Laffay, the well-known Rose breeder of Auteuil, introduced the first typical Hybrid Perpetual 'Princesse Helene' in 1837... From 1837 to 1843 Laffay produced eighteen Hybrid Perpetuals of merit...


[From The Practical Book of Outdoor Rose Growing, by George C. Thomas, p. 33-34:] about 1825 the Hybrid Perpetual began to take first place in the rose world. Perfectly hardy, of fine growth, having a longer period of bloom than its predecessors of equal growth and beauty, it became more and more popular, and held its sway until about 1890. Its disadvantage was its short period of bloom compared with Teas and Chinas which, while very much smaller in growth, were more constant bloomers and, as a general rule, superior to the Hybrid Perpetuals in perfume and foliage... [p. 44:] No other Hybrid Perpetual will compare with ['Frau Karl Druschki'] as a bloomer, for, as a rule, the Hybrid Perpetuals bloom only in June for a short season. It is true that occasionally a flower or two will make its appearance in the autumn, but these blooms cannot be counted upon.


[From The Rose Garden, by William Paul, p. 17:] I should think one-half of the Hybrid Perpetual Roses known up to the year 1850 originated with M. Laffay; he may indeed be said to have originated this group, one of the earliest of which was the 'Princesse Helene'...


[Ibid, p. 25:] The introduction of the Hybrid Perpetual Roses in the middle of the last century I regard as the greatest epoch in the history of the Rose. In addition to the many beautiful varieties of these, successively introduced, from them have arisen a wealth of sterling novelties popularly known as Hybrid Tea-scented.


[Ibid, p. 79:] Hybrid Perpetuals thrive in less favourable situations than most others... [and are also known for their] hardiness, finely-shaped flowers and great variation in colour...


[Ibid, p. 277:] The first varieties recognised as such were raised by M. Laffay from between the Hybrid Bourbon or Hybrid Chinese and Damask Perpetual. 'Princesse Helene', which was introduced in 1837, was the first striking variety that was obtained; 'Queen Victoria' followed next; and in 1840 there were above twenty varieties enumerated in the Rose Catalogues. Several of these, however, were drawn from other groups; one-fourth were Bourbon Perpetuals.


[Ibid, p. 278:] those varieties in which the Damask Perpetual or Hybrid Chinese is distinctly traceable... [see also Bourbon Perpetual, Rose des Rosomanes, and Noisette Perpetual.] ... There are also many minor distinctions; for instance, there is the 'Geant des Batailles' race, the 'General Jacqueminot' race, and others, but such divisions are less strongly marked...


[From A Heritage of Roses, by Hazel le Rougetel, page 51:] Hybrid Perpetuals prefer the rigorous eastern US.


[From Ibid, p. 135: At Mottisfont Abbey, there is] a splendid collection of Hybrid Perpetuals in two long borders along the far side.


[From The Old Rose Advisor, by Brent Dickerson, p. 120:] The first Hybrid Perpetuals were developed around 1837; before that date, the Portlands were the only cultivated Roses which rebloomed... Up to 1835, the catalogs contained only the hybrid non- remontant series... it is to Mons Laffay, horticulturalist of Auteuil, then at Bellevue, that we must allow the honor of having actually created the race of Hybrid Perpetuals... the class of roses called 'Hybrid Perpetual,' or 'Remontants'

...
[From The Old Rose Adventurer, by Brent Dickerson, p. 142:] 'Perpétuelle de Nueilly' (V. Verdier 1834) was one of the first Hybrid Perpetuals...


[From Ibid, p. 519: circa 1844] the Paris garden of [Victor Verdier], celebrated for its fine collection of roses... containing two or three acres... a greater portion of them were Bourbons and hybrid perpetuals... fifteen hundred varieties, selected from above twenty-five hundred cultivated by him since 1827...


[From A Survey of Hybrid Perpetuals, by Howard J. Tenner, p. 205:] at one time more than 4,000 varieties were said to exist. Fifty years ago the great majority of roses listed were hybrid perpetuals and only a very few hybrid teas could be found. Now the situation is completely reversed.


[From Operation Roses, by Geoffrey G. Whitney, p. 7:] In size and hardiness, the [older Hybrid Perpetuals] leave little to be desired; the colors range from pure white, to flesh pink, to rose, to rich velvety red. As a class, they are usually fragrant, although there are too many exceptions.


[From an advertisement in the American Rose Annual 1927, p. xxii:] Robert Evans Hughes, Rose Specialist, Williamsville, New York... Pernetianas [are] much superior when budded on 'Gloire des Rosomanes' stock. This distinction is quite noticeable in the Roses 'Los Angeles' and 'Souvenir de Claudius Pernet'... Our Hybrid Perpetual and Hybrid Tea Roses are budded on Japanese Multiflora stock.


[From Have You Tried These Fragrant Roses?, by Neville F. Miller, p. 63:] This class of rose does not take well to an industrial atmosphere. 'Oskar Cordel' is the healthiest of some fifteen varieties thus far tested.


[From Origin of Rose Types, by Roy Shepherd, p. 34: 'Princess Helene' (sic) is probably the first Hybrid Perpetual] The damask perpetuals and the hybrid chinas played the major part in the development of the hybrid perpetual group. The Noisette Rose... the Bourbon Rose... and their hybrids also contributed to some extent...


[From The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Roses, p. 117:] the bridge between old and new roses [many] resemble modern roses... although there is a great variety of shapes and forms, including some climbers... Flowering is recurrent, although the second flowering is less vigorous. Most varieties need a good pruning back each year at the end of flowering, with long shoots shortened and dead or weak growth removed...


[From The Makers of Heavenly Roses, p. 12: known as] Hybrid Perpetuals in England, Rosiers Remontants in France...


[From Old Roses, by Ethelyn Emery Keays, pp. 168-169:] William Paul [divided Hybrid Perpetuals into two classes, one] the Hybrid Perpetual derived from the Damask, and the Hybrid Bourbon, derived from the Bourbon... [In The Rose,] Ellwanger [divided Hybrid Perpetuals into groups according to "type" roses:] a class headed by 'Baronne Prevost' (Bourbons), the 'La Reine' group of Damask descent, the red line of 'Gloire des Rosomanes' probable ancestry, [a group] headed by 'Charles 'Lefebvre' [consisting of] a crossing of the 'La Reine' and the 'Gloire [des Rosomanes'] lines...


[Ibid, p. 169:] Pemberton in his book, Roses, writes: "Extensive as this class [Hybrid Perpetuals] is, the varieties appear to range themselves in distinct groups or types, differing in wood, foliage, flower and habit. This is due to their parentage, for they have all come from a comparatively few varieties." [The chief parents are:] 'Gloire des Rosomanes', 'Jules Margottin', 'General Jacqueminot', 'La Reine d'Angleterre', 'La Reine', 'Charles Lefebvre', and 'Victor Verdier'.


[Ibid, p. 172: G.A. Stevens wrote in Roses in the Little Garden:] "In the fifty years from 1840 until 1890, Hybrid Perpetuals attained complete dominance of the rose-gardening of Europe and America..."


[Ibid, p. 176:] Several French growers, some British, here and there an American, are responsible for the major part of the roses of this class... [Ellwanger showed that the most prolific seed-bearers were:] 'La Reine', 'Jules Margottin', 'Victor Verdier', 'Geant des Batailles', 'General Jacqueminot', and 'Charles Lefebvre'.


[Ibid, p. 191: Nicolas wrote in The Rose Manual: Hybrid Perpetuals are the only] hybrid rose that is safely hardy and naturally permanent without winter protection north of the Mason and Dixon line...


[From A Celebration of Roses, p. 89:] Rosenlexikon, originally published in 1936 and reprinted in 1983 by Gustav Weiland of Lubeck... lists some 18,000 roses, and a large number of them are remontant hybrids, or, as we know them, hybrid perpetuals... Die Rose, originally published in 1880 and reprinted in 1983 by Verlag Frick, lists around 5,000 roses in some detail and many of these are hybrid perpetuals... Apparently, Nietner was a head gardener in Potsdam prior to the publishing of his volume in 1880...


[From Roses of America, p. 81:] Often referred to as Victorian Roses, hybrid perpetuals are very hardy shrubs that bear extremely fragrant, many-petaled flowers on short stems... the flowers of the hybrid perpetuals grow upright, which made them ideal for display in the popular nineteenth-century flower shows, where they were displayed like works of art in "English boxes": their short stems were fitted into holes so that only their enormous blossoms showed... In Victorian times, [Damask Perpetuals] were simply called Hybrid Perpetual Roses... The first hybrid perpetuals were developed in the 1830s by the French rose breeder Jules [sic] Laffay... Almost half of the nearly one thousand varieties of roses listed by H.B. Ellwanger in The Rose in 1882 were hybrid perpetuals (which he called hybrid remontants), and it is estimated that at the height of their popularity in the nineteenth century, there were between three and four thousand varieties on the market...


[Ibid, p. 82:] eventually hybrid perpetuals were crossed with tea roses, leading to the development of the hybrid teas, which soon became more popular... there are few white and light pink hybrid perpetuals, their colors are usually dark -- deep red, pink, magenta, and even a borderline mauve. A few of them are striped...

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