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Initial post yesterday
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Reply #1 of 15 posted yesterday by Andrew from Dolton
To me it is slightly citrus and slightly dull, a little like a very cheap white wine that has been left in the glass over night.
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Reply #2 of 15 posted yesterday by HubertG
Andrew, I want to see that fragrance description on the rose label hahaha.
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Reply #3 of 15 posted yesterday by Andrew from Dolton
It's a bloody boring rose, ten-a-penny at any garden centre. It was a gift for my birthday last year. I don't want to seem ungrateful but it was only given to me because I used to be the gardener at Charleston Farmhouse. I am too green fingered to get away with saying it just died so I have to keep the thing alive, and what's more, David Austin roses don't grow well in my garden so I have to lavish untold amounts of care to keep it alive when I could be spending time on far more interesting roses.
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Reply #4 of 15 posted yesterday by Hamanasu
Thank you for the reply. I wanted a pimrose/pale lemon yellow coloured rose, and it was a toss between this and Harkness’s Diamond Days. The claim about its floriferousness and scent made me go for Vanessa Bell, but I too am a little underwhelmed...
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Reply #5 of 15 posted yesterday by Nastarana
Is 'Lemon Spice' available where you live?
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Reply #6 of 15 posted yesterday by Hamanasu
Alas, no, I’m in the UK, but thank you for the suggestion. Another primrose yellow I like is Alexander Hill Gray, which is available from Peter Beales and reportedly strongly fragrant of tea, but I read it balls in the rain, which makes it a poor choice for my climate. I’ll probably replace Vanessa Bell with another recent rose, Diamond Days, and see if I like that better.
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Reply #7 of 15 posted yesterday by Andrew from Dolton
Do you like 'Agnes'? It might be a bit too dark for what you want and it only repeats slightly later on but the smell is very pleasant.
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Reply #8 of 15 posted yesterday by Hamanasu
I have just seen your pics of Agnes and in your garden it’s certainly gorgeous! But I grow my roses in pots on a patio, and rugosas tend to grow too large for that kind of treatment (though I do have an own-root rose a parfum de l’hay happy in an 18 litre pot).
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Reply #9 of 15 posted yesterday by HubertG
Hamanasu, I grow Alexander Hill Gray, and it does ball a bit, but I have never found it has a strong fragrance, despite the descriptions, and I have a fairly good nose too.
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Reply #10 of 15 posted yesterday by Hamanasu
Thank you for the info -- that’s actually really useful. Do you have Mrs B R Cant? It seems to have little scent according to lots of people, but in my garden it is one of the best endowed -- tea with passion fruit. If (like AHG) Mrs BRC has little scent in your garden, then it might be that some teas behave differently in cooler climates than Australia? In the wonderful Aussie book on Tea Roses, Lady Hillingdon is also described as having ‘moderate’ scent, but the half open bud is always powerfully scented here in England... (I love teas, by the way, and I wish I had discovered them during the decade when I lived in Sydney... I realised, retrospectively, that I once saw some magnificent plants of tea roses in Rookwood Necropolis).
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Reply #11 of 15 posted today by HubertG
My sister grows a large bush of Mrs B R Cant, and it does have a wonderful scent here. There is something 'fruity' underlying it, can't say passionfruit has occurred to me, but it could be in the mix and it just never dawned on me. I'll make a note next time I smell it. I find that it the warmer weather here the scent of teas can be somewhat fleeting, and can be more persistently stronger in cooler whether, but I'm afraid Alexander Hill Gray is persistently weak generic tea scent all year for me. Some Teas like Mme Lombard seem to release more scent in warmer weather. Mine's flowering at the moment, flowers lighter than usual (almost apricot) but not much scent. My Lady Hillingdon is out in bloom too (and it's winter solstice time here) and the colour is richer and scent wonderful. I always detect apricots in it.
Bummer about not knowing about teas when you lived in Sydney.
Incidentally, Lemon Spice was a rose I was thinking of getting this season, but I think only one nursery here has it and I'm not sure of it's availability.

I just wanted to add that AHG would grow well in a pot if you do decide to give it a try. It is a beautifully formed rose.
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Reply #12 of 15 posted today by Hamanasu
My space is so limited I must be very selective, so if AHG has little scent, I might have to give it a miss, as I am determined to only grow well scented roses. (Mme Antoine Mari is the notable exception: it’s just too perfect, even with no/little/fleeting scent.) I agree AHG’s form looks beautiful, though — it reminds me a little of the (gorgeously scented) tea-noisette Marechal Niel, which I once grew (and gave up after a move, as its new situation didn’t make it happy, and it stopped giving me the perfect blooms I used to get in the first couple of years.) My Lady Hillingdon is also in bloom right now: what a luxury for you to have it blooming in winter. The scent to me is ‘smoky’ and similar to tobacco (in a nice/addictive way), though occasionally I too can detect apricots. It’s great you can relate to my experience of the delights of Mrs B R Cant’s fragrance. I love how this thread self-hijacked away from Vanessa Bell and towards teas. :)
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Reply #13 of 15 posted today by Patricia Routley
I am conscious that hijacking means any future member seeking info on 'Vanessa Bell' has to wade through lots of irrelevant material to that rose.
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Reply #14 of 15 posted today by Hamanasu
That’s true, sorry. If you’d like me to delete the irrelevant posts, please let me know.
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Reply #15 of 15 posted today by Patricia Routley
That is kind of you Hamanasu. HelpMeFind is a little different from other forums in that theoretically, all info exchanged should be relating to the pertinent rose. But it is difficult to restrain oneself sometimes - we go enthusiastically overboard in our love for roses.
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Reply #16 of 15 posted today by Hamanasu
That makes sense. I tried to remove the irrelevant posts but I’m afraid all I seemed to achieve was make the original (and relevant) one disappear — all the others are still there and won’t go away. I suspect a glitch in how the delete function operates?
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Initial post today by HubertG
The description page for 'Alexander Hill Gray' says "sets no hips". I've always found mine sets hips (which hold seeds) fairly readily. I find this a bit puzzling.
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Reply #1 of 6 posted today by HMF Admin
And this is exactly why comments like yours are so useful and what makes HMF so special. At some point in time, a permanent reference indicated otherwise and now we know that reference is in question based on your experience.

We need more people take the time to share their experience - Thanks !
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Reply #2 of 6 posted today by Patricia Routley
I certainly wouldn't discount that reference Admin. What we need is more of them to say if this rose does, or does not set hips. The fact that we show just one 1922 descendant indicates that it does not, and therefore there is a possibility that HubertG has received a rose other than 'Alexander Hill Gray'. Every reference is valuable.
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Reply #3 of 6 posted today by HubertG
Thanks HMF Admin,
This site is a veritable commonwealth of rose knowledge; the more contributions the better.

Patricia, I have two bushes of AHG ordered from different nurseries maybe 5 years apart. They are both the same and both do set hips. They do look the same as other AHGs in Australia posted here (I've posted a few photos of mine too) This is a double rose but not what I'd call a full one and so they have normal looking reproductive parts and, if insects can get in, I can't see any reason (barring an odd ploidy) why it shouldn't set hips. That's why I thought the no hips reference was unusual. By the time AHG was introduced Teas were waning in popularity, so that is probably the likeliest reason it wasn't used much in breeding, in my opinion.
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Reply #4 of 6 posted today by HubertG
There are in fact a couple of hips on Margaret Furness' photo here:

http://www.helpmefind.com/rose/l.php?l=21.304447
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Reply #5 of 6 posted today by Patricia Routley
That is interesting HubertG. They are hard to see, but I do see them.
I suspect Margaret didn't note them as she has said in her more recent photo 315211 that her plant didn't set hips.
Unfortunately 'Alexander Hill Gray' never came my way, so I have no first-hand experience. How else can I help here?
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Reply #6 of 6 posted today by HubertG
Best to wait for more comments on this topic, I'd say.
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Initial post 2 JAN 16 by Patricia Routley
Thank you so much for adding the 1910 and the two 1911 references Virginia. It is womderful that someone in America can find, AND CONTRIBUTE, these old snippets relating to a Queensland-bred rose. I note 'Souvenir de Therese Levet' has entered the fray in the parentage stakes. Perhaps the Queensland members of Heritage Roses in Australia would enjoy a trip to Charters Towers to peer over fences at old tea roses.
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Reply #1 of 3 posted today by HubertG
From "The Leedle Floral Co." (Springfield, Ohio) 1913 catalogue, page 25:

"Penelope (Williams, 1910.)
Colors unique and beautiful; outer petals at times quite blood red, shading paler towards the center which is primrose-yellow. Large and very full, with an appearance of the Maman Cochet type."

It is marked with as asterisk in the index to indicate that it is a new rose.
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Reply #2 of 3 posted today by Patricia Routley
This is the first reference of 'Penelope' in America.
I need to enter Leedle as a publication. Can I have an URL for that issue please HubertG - I can't find it.
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Reply #3 of 3 posted today by HubertG
Sure, this should get you there.

https://archive.org/details/CAT31293961

The catalogues are interesting because this nursery seems to pride themselves on what they claim are accurate descriptions.
Penelope seems to have disappeared from their list by the 1917 catalogue.
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Initial post 11 FEB 14 by goncmg
In the old ARS annual "Proof of Pudding" back from when this one was new, it is mentioned in passing that at release in 1961 or 1962 this one cost $20 or $25, had to be special ordered or something to that effect (that would be like a rose costing close to $200 today!)....the general sentiment was that the variety did not live up to its marketing, was not very special....does anyone out there have any details on this? How did a $20 rose via special order (?) come to be on the market 50 years ago? Seems it was marketed at exhibitors??
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Reply #1 of 6 posted 12 FEB 14 by Patricia Routley
Cheek probably. The 1965 references says "Loves mildew, is fragrant and not worth $10.00"
And those orange photos from India don't seem very phlox pink to me.
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Reply #2 of 6 posted 13 FEB 14 by goncmg
Patricia! Hope all is well with you and you are enjoying a lovely summer down under. Here in Ohio, USA we have had one of the meanest, cruelest, hardest winters in decades. Got to -15 with no snow and high winds, etc. This is why mine sleep in the garage and even then the larger ones seemed to freeze solid (which makes me nervous but I know is not usually lethal)......now THAT being said, lol, have you noticed that rather often on here it is the old "Eastern Block" and India that posts these pics that just look really "off?" Probably innocently, too, suspect it may just have to do with easy marketing like our waxed body bag discounts here in the US...???
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Reply #3 of 6 posted 17 FEB 14 by Dianne's Southwest Idaho Rose Garden
Chris, I wondered if the color variance in the photos from India were perhaps a camera or lighting error, since even the foliage doesn't look like a natural green. The form of the bloom looks quite similar, don't you think?

My rose was new last year and didn't bloom, but perhaps this spring I'll have an opinion on whether this rose has any qualities making it unique or especially worth growing.
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Reply #4 of 6 posted 3 days ago by Just-one-more-rose
And, what did you decide, if I may ask? I'm especially interested to hear about the fragrance. Thank you
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Reply #5 of 6 posted yesterday by Dianne's Southwest Idaho Rose Garden
My rose died over a winter, so I can't answer that.
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Reply #6 of 6 posted today by Just-one-more-rose
Ah, pity. Thanks for taking the trouble to respond.
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