Marbrée. Bred by Robert and Moreau, France 1858
This is another of the Damask Perpetuals that I grow. I have had a plant of this rose for several years now, in various locations, and it seems to perform very well no matter where it grows. It is rarely found described in books on Old Garden Roses, and seems to be one of the less popular of this group, perhaps because to many people, it has very little of that classic Damask fragrance that so many of them are reknowned for. However, for me, this spotted beauty has a moderately strong fragrance. I suspect it depends on a persons individual "olfactory skills"!
As you can see in the photo, this is one of the few spotted roses that have survived the ages. The amount of spotting varies depending on the weather, it seems, and the markings are barely visible here. Interestingly enough, I have observed that many of the seedlings grown from this rose show much more pronounced spotting than it does! Brent Dickerson has also raised seedlings from 'Marbrée', and found the same results. In fact, he has registered one of the roses as 'Papa Vibert', a beautiful deep pink with pronounced spotting.
I find 'Marbrée" to be a very nice shrub that is well worth the garden space. Like most of its group, it has a very shapely shrub form, is well foliated with attractive, healthy leaves, and it repeats frequently in flushes throughout the summer. It has also been one of the latest bloomers for me: usually there is one or two last blooms in December!
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