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'VIRbrown' rose Description
'Coffee Country ™' rose photo
Photo courtesy of Beth's Northern CA Rose Garden
Availability:
Commercially available
Synonyms:
HMF Ratings:
29 favorite votes.  
Average rating: EXCELLENT.  
ARS:
Mauve or mauve blend Floribunda.
Registration name: VIRbrown
Origin:
Bred by M.S. Viraraghavan (India, 1997).
Introduced in United States by Roses Unlimited in 2007 as 'Coffee Country'.
Class:
Floribunda.  
Bloom:
Russet and brown, mauve blending, light yellow reverse.  Flowers russet and coffee brown with suffusion of mauve, reverse light yellow.  Mild, sweet fragrance.  15 to 25 petals.  Average diameter 4".  Large, double (17-25 petals), in small clusters bloom form.  Blooms in flushes throughout the season.  
Habit:
Medium, spreading, upright.  Medium, semi-glossy, medium green foliage.  
Height of up to 3' (up to 90 cm).  
Growing:
USDA zone 6b through 9b (default).  Can be used for cut flower, garden or shrub.  Disease susceptibility: very disease resistant.  Remove spent blooms to encourage re-bloom.  Spring Pruning: Remove old canes and dead or diseased wood and cut back canes that cross. In warmer climates, cut back the remaining canes by about one-third. In colder areas, you'll probably find you'll have to prune a little more than that.  
Breeder's notes:
We are, like all South Indians, inveterate coffee drinkers, and South Indian coffee is not drunk black, but with a good amount of milk, because the coffee decoction is very concentrated and bitter. So a cup of our coffee will be in shades of brown - lighter or darker according to preference.
This rose has a variety of shades of brown and chocolate, with creamy centers, and is fragrant, unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your point of view) not of coffee, but of spice, but of a soft fragrance.

In South India, the coffee country area is in the state of Karnataka, in the district of Coorg, whose main city is Mercara. (that was the English name, now Indianised to ‘Madikeri’). Coorg and coffee are synonymous. So we decided to name this rose ‘Mercara’ for the Indian market. ‘Coorg’ has now been Indianised to ‘Kodagu’ and we felt that ‘Mercara’ sounded more euphonious.
Notes:
 
 
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