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English Roses
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Mrs. Sam McGredy, bred by S. McGredy and Son, Ireland 1929.

Mrs Sam McGredyBreeding: (Donald MacDonald x Golden Emblem) X (Seedling x The Queen Alexandra Rose)

Note: this is also classed as a Pernetiana.

If it weren't for some of these very early Hybrid Teas, I rather doubt that I would ever have come to grow any of this class. 'Mrs. Sam McGredy' is very much of a style for its time, with shorter (and less vigorous) growth and is much twiggier in nature than most modern HT's. (In its day, it was considered to be a robust and vigorous variety) For some, this style is less desirable than the more robust (and coarse?) HT's of today, and yet I find it more appealing than most. There is also a great deal of the coloring of the Teas evident in this rose, with its shimmering, smoky melon-and-salmon tints and slightly chinese red reverse. Modern HT's rarely, if ever, show such subtleties of color, and for me this is their downfall. Blooms of 'Mrs. Sam McGredy' are rarely more than 4 inches wide, which seems quite appropriate for the plant. The fragrance, a fairly strong phenolic Tea scent, is also something that has carried over from its ancestral Teas, to great effect. This rose is a treasure and is most deserving of a place in any collection of historic Hybrid Teas.

My plant of 'Mrs. Sam McGredy' is growing on its own roots, which seems to suit it just fine. However, it is a well known fact that this is a difficult rose to propagate by cuttings; budding is the preferred method. I shall make a budded copy as well so that I will be able to comment on which plant is the more prosperous.

ARS merit rating: NA
Personal merit rating: 7.8.
Hardiness: Likely USDA zones 6 to 10, zone 6 with considerable protection.
Shrub size: 2.5 to 4 feet tall X 2.5 feet wide.
Fragrance: 3.5, fairly strong Tea scent, typical of some of the earlier Hybrid Teas.

Black Tea Mrs. Sam McGredy
Dainty Bess Nigrette
Gray Pearl September Morn
Harry Wheatcroft Smoky
Helen Traubel Soleil d'Or
Hinrich Gaede Tantarra
It's Showtime Tiffany
Julia's Rose Verschuren
La France Vesuvius
Mme. Caroline Testout  

Original photographs and site content © Paul Barden 2005, All Rights Reserved.