There’s a special pleasure in cutting flowers fresh from your own garden. That pleasure is tenfold when the flowers you cut grow in such abundance all season that taking some for the vase still leaves plenty in garden beds.
For gardeners, this makes repeat-blooming garden roses an ideal cut-flower treat, with many considering David Austin’s fragrant English Roses best of all.
“Wandering the garden, cutting shears in hand, feels nearly decadent once the English Roses begin to bloom,” says Michael Marriott, the longtime technical director of David Austin Roses in Albrighton, UK. “But it's not really decadent, when the roses you're cutting are covered in blooms from early summer till frost.”
It’s the spontaneity of cutting from the garden that Marriott loves most. “I tuck my favorite secateurs in my pocket, grab the enamel jug I keep handy, fill it with cool water, then head out to see what’s up. Invariably, I find a few perfect blooms that beg to be brought indoors.
“All English Roses are beautiful in the vase. So the roses you already have in your garden are, naturally, the place to start,” says Marriott. That said, he’s found that some varieties are even better than others, offering longer vase life as well as pleasing fragrance and overall beauty .
U.S. and Canadian gardeners can find a full line of fragrant David Austin English Roses at www.davidaustinroses.com/us/.
Following is Michael Marriott’s list of English Rose varieties that are particularly good for cutting, with a potential vase life of 5 or more days:
Top 5 English Roses for cutting:
Note: for fragrance rating: 5 of 5 is most fragrant of all.
Top 20 English Rose varieties for cutting:
Bit shorter lived but deliciously fragrant in the vase: