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Peter Beales has devoted almost half a century to old roses and has done so much to bring them back into the public's good graces as well as to rediscover many which had been forgotten or thought extinct. Classic Roses: An Illustrated Encyclopedia and Growe's Manual of Old Roses, Shrub Roses and Climbers is an expanded and updated version of his earlier landmark work, with the addition of 600 new four-color photographs.
Beales describes over 1,000 roses based upon his own knowledge and experience of each rose. This new edition includes recent introductions, as well as some older roses which have recently been rediscovered and reintroduced. Beales also discusses some of the newer types of roses and how to use them. There is a history of the rose and its evolution. Beales offers his thoughts about how older roses and newer varieties can be used effectively in modern gardens in a section entitled, Rose in the Landscape, which ought to inspire everyone, from anxious novice to seasoned veteran, who reads it. There is practical advice on cultivation (including a piece by Mike Lowe, which should be of particular interest to US rosarians, entitled Three Persistent North American Pests), susceptibility to diseases, tolerance of shade, hardiness, and so forth.
There is a lot of useful information in the Appendices, too. A world climatic map, color and height charts, rose societies around the world, many of the world's important rose gardens, nurseries, a glossary, and books Beales recommends for further reading.
In Classic Roses: An Illustrated Encyclopedia and Grower's Manual of Old Roses, Shrub Roses and Climbers, Peter Beales presents an essential manual for the serious rosarian. It is a grower's guide to selecting, buying and growing roses, with special emphasis on those varieties that have stood the test of time and will, with his efforts, still be with us in the years to come.