Exhibiting Winning Roses: What Does It Take? by John Hefner

For rose exhibitors, the ultimate goal is to grow, prune, cut quality roses plus travel and exhibit at a national show.  Of course, your desire and plans are always determined by the show location and time of year that will allow you to present quality roses in your exhibit. The time your roses must endure traveling in a cooler plus overnight storage in your hotel room the night before the show must always be taken into your final equation.

On October 4, 2019 during our road travel to the national conference and rose show held in Franklin, Tennessee, the one-hour traffic delay on Interstate 65 which detoured us through the construction laden downtown at Louisville, Kentucky was not in our original plan and I wondered how this delay would eventually effect our roses.  Plus, for this rose show, a new and never tested method of providing water and packing roses would be used.  How far can a rose exhibitor push their comfort boundaries in order to exhibit roses on the national level?

GOALS!

Our first goal was to present an entry in the F. Harmon Saville Memorial Challenge Bowl –

  • An entry of eighteen (18) exhibition type miniature roses, six (6) or more varieties, displayed in a low bowl.
  • Container to be provided by the exhibitor and should not exceed four (4) inches in diameter.
  • Floral foam is permitted.
  • Width of entry allow: 18 inches.

The requirements in itself are indeed a “challenge” but isn’t that what challenge classes are supposed to be?  The combined effort to grow, prune, cut, condition and travel with exhibition roses requires knowledge, experience and sometime a little luck.

Varieties we used in our Seville entry were Arcanum, Ayden Renee, Daddy Frank, Memphis King, Renegade, Soroptimist International, and Swirly Pop. 

Since exhibiting roses is not an exact science, I suggest that you always have a Plan B.  Our second desire and goal was to have an entry in the Dee Bennett Memorial Trophy, an entry of twelve (12) miniature roses, at exhibition stage, without side buds.  One variety or any combination of varieties, displayed in a clear container provided by the exhibitor.  The exhibitor may use floral foam for support.

Varieties used in the Bennett were Bees Knees, Chessie’s Favorite, Daddy Frank, Erin Alonson, Hugs n’ Kisses, Renegade, Soroptimist International. We were proud that Hugs n’ Kisses a rose we introduced and named for our grandchildren was also included in our exhibit.

GATHERING SUPPLIES…

With our tape measure in hand, Donna and I made several shopping excursions to local stores on numerous days to find, select and purchase the required show containers that had the proper dimensions. This task soon had us wondering if we would indeed find the correct style to compliment our potential roses.  In the end, we did purchase five various containers in which we felt comfortable and ones that would not dominate over the roses.

As the days before the show date approached, the hope is always for your roses to repeat from the planned pruning schedule, however, weather cooperation and your experience allows you to cut blooms at the required degree of openness.

HERE WE GO…

And with my first pruning cut made 55 days before the October 5, 2019 rose show date, our challenge began.

The September 2019 weather conditions for mid-state Indiana was extreme heat with temperatures reaching 90 degrees plus each day.  This was not ideal fall growing weather for roses to develop tight centers plus lack of rain meant roses would require water. Mother Nature eventually cooperated, even though it was abnormally hot, the plants and developing stems responded for our required specimens.

Changes in strategy is required due to the opening characteristics of each bloom, color combinations required, similar size and degree of openness.

On arrival at the show site, the hope is always that the blooms have traveled well and are ready for competition.  Since staging is always a factor in challenge classes, many thoughts come to mind as how to stage an entry with multiple blooms, using bloom colors to highlight the entry.  We practiced during the month of August but did not always experience the desired overall arrangement we were trying to obtain.  We researched photos that had been published in various rose publications. 

GAME DAY…

On the morning of the rose show, we woke at 2:00 am and began our journey through the hotel’s quiet hallways and empty elevators with three extra-large coolers full of roses, buckets, grooming kit, bowls etc. only to arrive at the prep room and found no vases available – all had been reserved by other exhibitors. We had one hundred miniature and miniflora roses – no vases.  Would this be the day when we look for Plan C?  However, most of our potential roses would be placed in classes requiring multiple blooms or one container. With due diligence from the rose show chairman and 2 hours later, additional vases were transported to the prep area for eager exhibitors to use.

During the time we prepped our roses, the chosen specimens were segregated for consideration for the two desired national challenge classes. These roses which had traveled in plastic water vials with pointed anchor picks were strategically placed in flat Styrofoam.  This gave us an advantage to move the roses without disturbing the blooms.  With the educational instructional assistance from our successful exhibiting friend, Satish Prabhu, South Carolina, the Seville and Bennett entries were carefully staged and our “attention getting” colored blooms that Donna and I had chosen made the entries come to life.

Satish’s verbal instructions always included careful attention to detail which became a learning experience for these two seasoned exhibitors.  It was an outstanding one-on-one educational learning experience for us from a very talented rosarian and exhibitor.

After these two national entries were completed, we selected roses to be entered in the J. Benjamin Williams Miniflora Rose Trophy (10 Minifloras), American Box (9 Minifloras), Artist Palette (5 Miniatures), Miniature Spray & Single Bloom of the Same Variety, Rose Bowl, and single blooms classes.  We truly were blessed to have additional exhibits displayed on the awards table.

FARM KIDS…

As Indiana “farm kids” Donna and I are both 10 year 4-H members.  We both exhibited livestock and various other categories that were available in the 1950s-1960s era. We grew up competing against our neighbors and close friends.

We first began exhibiting roses on the national level in 1979 at the national convention hosted by the Milwaukee Rose Society where we were awarded King of Show. We were new, unexperienced but eager to learn. I knew the accomplished exhibitors and continuously discussed roses and ask questions, then more questions.  I have learned over the years that accomplished exhibitors are always eager to help others learn about all aspects to growing and showing roses.

There really are no “tricks to the trade,” it is work – diligently working your garden and getting to know your plants.  You need to learn everything about the roses you grow and enjoy, when to cut, how they react to shading or refrigeration, how they will travel, plus in Indiana, how to get your roses to survive the brutal winter temperatures and wind. Winter snow is welcomed as it will help insulate your plants.

WHAT IT TAKES…

Exhibiting is work! Success does not come easily!  It is hard work, detailed work, diligent work.

It is spending unlimited, long hours in the garden you LOVE.

It is setting goals and doing anything and everything to obtain that goal.

It is a continual learning experience in your own garden as no two gardens are alike.

It is hours of walking the rose garden, protecting blooms, cutting at the appropriate time, and carefully conditioning and grooming.

This work plus pre-exhibiting details resulted in us successfully entering two winning National Challenge Class trophies.

MAKING MEMORIES…

After the national rose show, our two winning national rose entries spent two additional days in our hotel room then were carefully transported in buckets back to our Indiana home and all blooms were dried to make a potpourri for us to forever hold their memories near and dear to our hearts. 

These are memories that will indeed last forever!

A Saturday Steeped in Roses by Linda Kimmel

JUDGING SEMINAR

The morning of June 8 (Saturday) started off with a Horticulture Judging Seminar in the beautiful home and garden of Mark and Cathy Nolen.  Attendees came from near and far, including Ed Yesan from Collinsville, IL, Cheryl Pettus, Champaign, IL, Howard Carmen and Paula Williams from the countryside of Louisville, Ky. We were very happy to see Renee LaFollette back up and around, as well as Barbara Stauch.

Mark Nolen and John Hefner kick-started the morning with programs on judging rose horticulture, including topics concerning exhibition stage versus exhibition form, judging challenge classes and much more. Members practiced point scoring of several roses selected from the Nolen’s garden. After a beautiful lunch prepared by Cathy Nolen, Linda Kimmel leads the group in a lively game of Old Garden Rose Jeopardy. Mark polished off the afternoon with our final program including ethics. I think everyone went home with renewed enthusiasm and knowledge for judging roses. Thank you, Mark and Cathy Nolen, for hosting the Horticulture Judging seminar, sharing your beautiful home and garden, and for being such gracious host.

GARDEN PARTY

But the party does not stop on the south side of Indianapolis, it just moved to Brownsburg. After a lot of rain, Mother Nature provided a beautiful evening at the home of Teresa and Greg Byington for a pitch-in and self-guided garden tour. We are thankful for the 40 wonderful people that attended, of which four to six were new members.

 

A trellis loaded with ‘Peggy Martin’ blooms and others covered in ‘New Dawn’ rose and Etoile Violette clematis provided backdrops for Prom-like photo opps. ‘Mother of Pearl’ rose emerged as the Queen of the Prom with spectacular peachy-apricot blooms that were simply stunning. As she strolled down the red carpet, ‘Mother of Pearl’ was photographed like frenzied paparazzi at the Oscars.

There was food galore on the tables, lovely serenity views of a gorgeous rose garden and wonderful friends with great conversation. A perfect ending to a perfect day. Thank you, Greg and Teresa, for sharing your wonderful garden and home.

One thing that strikes me while at the Byington home, you can feel the love. You can feel the love that Teresa has for her roses and garden. You can feel the love that Greg and Teresa have for each other and their family. You can feel the love they share with their friends.

 

2019 Programs and Conferences

In 2019 we are dedicated to a year of Rose Education and Inspiration. The inspiration part is so easy as beautiful roses are so inspiring. This year we have programs on starting a rose bed, tips on floral arranging, David Austin Roses, dealing with the pests  & diseases and so much more!

Our group is made up of rose growers at every level. Our “Masters” are dedicated to helping anyone regardless of where you are in your rose growing hobby.

Our District Meetings are additional opportunities for education. Many of our programs are approved for Master Gardener Education and Consulting Rosarian Credit.

Come join for inspiration, education and SO MUCH FUN!

Our meetings are open to the public, so share this information with your friends!

 

TUESDAY, MARCH 12 / 6:30 pm 
Sullivan Munce Cultural Center / Zionsville, IN
WAKING UP THE GARDEN

SPEAKERS: Teresa Downham, Trudy Struck, Carolyn Lloyd
Program: Come hear about the Hamilton County Master Gardener Rose Garden and the great work being done there by the ones who oversee it today! 
ASK THE MASTERS: Weather Issues and Roses
Our Consulting Rosarians will be available to discuss weather issues and answer your questions!
ROSE SALE: Opportunity to Pre-Order and Pre-Pay
See rose list HERE.

 

SAT, MAR 30, ILLINOIS INDIANA DISTRICT CONFERENCE
TIME: 9 – 4
LOCATION: Bethlehem Presbyterian Church
5588 N. State Road 25, Logansport, IN

SPEAKERS:

  • Dr. Mark Windham / Plant Pathology / University of Tennessee

Dr. Windham will give three 20-min sessions on diseases, insects and pesticide safety.  (Qualified for CR Credit)

  • Curtis Aumiller / ARS Chairman of Photography

Curtis will share tips and tricks of rose photography and help us better prepare for entering photography in rose shows.

Additional details including registration information HERE.

 

TUES, APR 9 / 6:30 pm (see rose sale time below)
Sullivan Munce Cultural Center / Zionsville
SPRING ROSE CARE
PROGRAM: 
Planting, Pruning & Growing Roses in Containers: John Hefner
John Hefner is one of the leading rosarians in the country – winning most every award we have! We have so much to learn from him.
ROSE SALE: Pick up Roses  6:00 – 6:45
ASK THE MASTERS: Tool Talk–Our “masters” will bring their favorite tools to talk about and will be available to answer your questions.

 

TUES, MAY 14 / 6:30 pm
Sullivan Munce Cultural Center / Zionsville
PROGRAM: Flower Arranging Tips & Tricks

    • Linda Kimmel: Tips for ARS rose show arrangements
    • Janet Kuebler: Tips for home flower arrangements

ROSEFEST: Final updates on Rosefest
MARK NOLEN: Bringing Roses to Rosefest

 

SAT, JUNE 15, ROSEFEST
Chairman: Teresa Downham
Details coming soon.

 

SAT, JUNE 8,  6:00 pm
GARDEN PARTY
LOCATION: Byington’s Garden
PITCH-IN PICNIC
PLEASE RSVP: teresabyington@gmail.com

 

TUES, AUG 13, 6:30 pm
Sullivan Munce Cultural Center / Zionsville
PROGRAM: NEW MEMBER PANEL DISCUSSION
ASK THE MASTERS: Pests & Diseases – Consulting Rosarians will be available to answer your questions.

 

SAT, SEPT 7, 9 – 4
FALL DISTRICT CONFERENCE & ROSE SHOW

      • Hosted by Stephen Decatur Rose Society
      • NOTE: The rose show will feature The Tiedeman National Trophy

LOCATION: Richland Community College in Decatur, IL
SPEAKER: Dr. David Zlesak
Additional details to come.
District website HERE.

 

TUES, SEPT 10, 6:30 pm
Sullivan Munce Cultural Center / Zionsville
PROGRAM: David Austin and His Roses by Trudy Struck
ASK THE MASTERS: Putting the Garden to Bed

 

TUES, OCT 8, 6:30 pm
Sullivan Munce Cultural Center / Zionsville
Chili Cookoff / Costume Party
Chili will be provided.
Costume Party: Come dress as a rose name.
Prizes!

 

SAT, DEC 7, 6 pm
HOLIDAY PARTY
Annual Awards & New Board Installation
Location: TBD

We look forward to having you with us for each and every meeting!

There’s something for everyone! Some of our meetings are lecture style and some are hands-on workshops.

Celebrating in a Winter Wonderland

Our year-end celebration was held in John and Donna Hefner’s winter wonderland.

The Hefner’s enjoy decorating for the holidays and have seven theme trees placed throughout their home. It is a festive sight to behold for all to enjoy. We were greeted by a beautiful 10 foot poinsettia tree located beside the fireplace. Various other theme decorated trees include fragrance, snowman, seamstress, Charlie Brown and two red/lime green trees which are strategically located throughout their home. Department 56 village pieces and accessories were located throughout their home adding an additional sense of nostalgia and enchantment. Everyone enjoyed the Italian Fontanini nativity, animals and people as well as the special holiday decorations handmade by Donna that included needlepoint, cross-stitched and quilted art work.

THANK YOU TO THE HEFNER’S!

2019 BOARD INSTALLATION

During the evening our 2019 board was installed. Immediate Past President, Linda Kimmel did the honors.

Teresa Byington, President
Humberto DeLuca, 1st Vice President
Eloisa Garza, 2nd Vice President
Carolyn Lloyd, Secretary
Donna Hefner, Treasurer
Teresa Downham, Newsletter Editor
Congrats to the board! We know we are in good hands!

Linda, also handed out special appreciation awards from our president, Teresa Byington, as she was out of town for her mother-in-law’s funeral.

 

AWARD OF MERIT

VP Humberto DeLuca, presented the ARS Award of Merit to two members who have served our society above and beyond! Congratulations on your well deserved recognition!

 
 
Teresa Downham receiving her AWARD OF MERIT!

Keith Oltean receiving his AWARD OF MERIT!


COMING SOON!

Our board is already busy planning for 2019. Stay tuned for information on our annual rose sale and our meeting restart on Tuesday, March 12 / 6:30 pm at Sullivan Munce Cultural Center in Zionsville. We can’t wait to be together again! 

Sullivan Munce
225 West Hawthorne Street
Zionsville, IN 46077
(317) 873-4900

https://www.sullivanmunce.org

If you have any questions about our society, please contact us HERE.


Wishing all of you a wonderful holiday season filled with joy!

Create Your Garden Dream with Climbing Roses

TUES, AUGUST 14, 6:30 pm

Location: Sullivan Munce ​/ 225 West Hawthorne Street  / Zionsville, IN 46077

Linda Kimmel, immediate past president of the Indianapolis Rose Society, will share with us the charm and grace of climbing roses—which ones to grow and how to care for them!

PROGRAM: Create Your Garden Dream with Climbing Roses

There are few plants that can rival the gorgeous climbing roses in the garden, creating ambiance of nostalgia and breath-taking beauty. Stephen Scanniello, Curator of the Rockefeller Rose Garden, New York, refers to climbing roses as the “acrobats and aerialists” of the garden. Climbing roses can be used in countless ways, such as cascading over fences, trellis’ or walls, softening hard landscapes, concealing ugly structures or small buildings, accentuating windows or entryways. They can provide a back drop for other garden plants or make a stunning focal point, creating breath-taking picturesque effects. Climbing roses are versatile. And if you choose healthy, disease resistant and winter hardy varieties, they can last a lifetime with reasonable or even minimal care.

What climbing roses are right for your garden?; What care do they need?; Pruning when and how?; How to winterize?

Come to the meeting and get your questions answered about Creating your Garden Dream with Climbing Roses.

Round Table Discussion: Overwintering Roses in Containers
**Panel: John Hefner, Linda Kimmel, Teresa Byington
Bring your tips, your stories and your questions about overwintering roses in containers.

We are looking forward to seeing you there!

 

 

APRIL 10: SOIL HEALTH

 

 

Regardless of what we are growing, good soil is a vital part of what we do. NOTE: Master Gardeners, this has been approved for education hours!

At our April meeting we will discuss principles of soil health!

TUES, APRIL 10, 6:30 pm: SOIL HEALTH
Location: Sullivan Munce / Zionsville

Speaker:  Kevin Allison, Marion County  Soil Health Specialist
Kevin Allison, Marion County SWCD Soil Health Specialist, will lead a discussion on using the principles of soil health to organically improve soil: Minimizing soil disturbance, maximizing diversity, keeping the soil covered, and providing a continuous living root.

Kevin will explore how amendments, diverse mulching and cover crops can be integrated into flower production and preparing new beds.

There will be time for Q & A with Kevin!

ROSE SALE TOO…

Also at the April Meeting, we will have roses for sale!

One of the perks of being a part of a rose society is access to beautiful roses! This year we have a great lineup of beautiful roses for sale.

COST…

$18 for members

$20 non members

$25 for David Austins

AVAILABILITY

The roses will be available at our April meeting … on a first come / first served basis.

To see picture of the beautiful roses we will have, CLICK HERE.

 

Will the Real Seven Sisters Please Stand Up

-Linda Kimmel
Indianapolis Rose Society

There is some confusion about the Seven Sisters Rose, as there are several different roses by the same name. helpmefind.com has six different varieties listed. Can we get some clarity?

A Bit of History…

‘Seven Sisters’ is believed to be an old Chinese garden rose which was introduced from Japan to England by Charles Greville in the early 1800s. John Loudon (England), a most influential horticultural nurseryman and journalist of his time, wrote (1844): “The variety of the color produced by the buds at first opening was not less astonishing than their number. White, light blush, deeper blush, light red, darker red, scarlet and purple flowers, all appear in the same corymb, and the production of these seven colors at once is said to the be the reason why this rose is known as the Seven Sisters Rose.”

According to Charles Quest-Ritson, author of “Climbing Roses of the World”, writes “the clone currently in cultivation was likely grown from seeds imported from Japan and acquired by Phillipe Noisette, a London market gardener. Brent Dickerson, author of “The Old Garden Rose Advisor”, writes about R. multiflora ‘Polyantha’, also grown from seeds imported from Japan that “It is evidently quite variable, and the small number of seeding it has given us have sometimes differed from the type so much that none of the characteristics of the original are preserved.” So, is it safe to assume that seedlings of the ‘Seven Sisters’ roses, also R. multiflora, acquired from Japan may have varied in breeding lines and traits? Once the ‘Seven Sisters’ rose was introduced (1815), it took a few years for it to gain in popularity, but eventually in the mid-century, rose sales started to take off. As the public demand exceeded the supply, nurseries started selling knock-off versions of ‘Seven Sisters’, creating even more confusion.

Characteristics (common to the real ‘Seven Sisters’)

‘Seven Sisters’ is a medium pink blend Hybrid Multiflora, once-blooming in the spring or early summer, born in large clusters, with individual flowers being less than 2-inches. Height can reach 10 to 20-ft and can get 10-ft wide. Hardy from zones 4b to 9b but tends to be shorter and smaller in colder zones. ‘Seven Sisters’ is not picky, it will grow well in dry or wet, acid or alkaline soil. Prefers full sun but can tolerate some light shade. Being hardy and disease resistant, as well as easy to propagate, ‘Seven Sisters’ is an ideal rose to grow and share with your friends and rose enthusiast. After all these years, ‘Seven Sisters’ is still an intensely popular rose in the landscape.

‘Seven Sisters’ is the ARS approved registration name. Alternative cultivar names may include: ‘Grevillei’, Grevilli major’, ‘Oizimei’, ‘Rosier Multiflore a Grandes Feuilles’, Rosa thoryi, Rose multiflora f. platyphylla. Most American rose nurseries sell this version as the real ‘Seven Sisters’, so ladies, please standup.

Alias Seven Sisters includes (but not limited to): ‘Red Seven Sisters’ (not registered) and Félicité-Perpétue (HSem).

‘Seven Sisters’ is comfortable on an old farm fence or a formal rose bed. Regardless of where ‘Seven Sisters’ is planted, it will bring you happiness for years. Photo reprinted with permission from Jonquil Junction (Arkansas).

Labeled ‘Seven Sisters’, most likely the “Red” version.  ‘Red Seven Sisters’ is a found rose, hybrid multiflora, once-blooming, hardy zone 6b to 8. Growth habit is similar. Reprinted with permission by Rich Baer, photo taken at a Llama farm in Washington State.

‘Seven Sisters’ Félicité-Perpétue (Hybrid Sempervirens) was hybridized by Antoine Jacques (French breeder) in 1827. This ‘Seven Sisters’ is white or near white with a blush of pink. Its growth, habit, bloom and form are similar to her medium pink counterpart. Hardy between 6b and 10b.Reprinted with permission by Lee Tomlinson, photo taken at San Jose Historic Rose Garden.