Biltmore Rose Trials – 2nd visit

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015 - 1No 1505 Floribunda

I was back at The Biltmore yesterday for the 2nd day of judging for the rose trials and by some miracle of weather it wasn’t raining in Asheville for the few hours we were there. (We have had non-stop heavy downpours for the past week putting on hold all our exterior house work but as my mom would say, “better rain than drought.”) Let me tell you, it was absolutely GLORIOUS to be outside in that autumn-y weather, not getting rained on, and frolicking amongst the roses. Yes, I frolicked!

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-12No. 1509 Hybrid Tea

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-13No. 1511 Grandiflora

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-14No. 1517 Shrub

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-15No. 1518 Shrub

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-16No. 1518 Shrub

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-18No. 1523 Floribunda

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-19No. 1524 Climber

I’m still getting the hang of this judging thing. (Speech about how I am SO grateful to be on this panel even if I feel a bit out of my league.) It can be difficult to look at a rose and pick it apart when I really just want to love on it. None-the-less, each rose in the trial must get evaluated for qualities such as disease resistance (SO important, right?) and, the more subjective, general impression of the whole plant.

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-20 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-24Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-22 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-26No. 1526 Climber received the highest scores from me yesterday. The scent is light.

{EDIT: I have been getting a few emails about this rose asking for the name, but unfortunately I won’t find out unless it wins an award. I will say, however, that to my eye it looks a lot like David Austin’s The Albrighton Rambler’. So that’s something to consider! }

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-27No. 1530 Shrub

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-32No. 1417 Shrub

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-33No. 1419 Shrub

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-34No. 1421 Shrub

Honestly, many of the trial roses haven’t wowed me enough to say, “I’d grow that”, but there were two or three that did, and one in particular that I had to be dragged away from. Literally. I wanted this rose to be my new best friend. I’m curious to see what the other judges have to say about it, because of course, disease resistance and vigor aside, don’t we all have favorites for our own reasons? My personal preferences are for roses with a laxer habit, with blooms reminiscent of OGR’s or even species types, in subdued colors. I made a note on one of the roses that said, “strange shade of orange.” To someone else, that vibrant hue may knock their socks off, so it really does vary, but isn’t that nice when you think about it? It would be boring if everyone’s gardens looked the same. I digress.

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-6‘Proud Land’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-39‘Madame Ernest Calvat’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-8‘Winter Sun’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-9‘Queen Elizabeth’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-10‘Lady of Megginch’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-28 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-29 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-30‘The Lady Gardener’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-35‘About Face’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-36 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-37‘Mother of Pearl’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-38‘Pink Traviata’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-40‘Strike it Rich’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-41‘Lion’s Fairy Tale’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-42‘Monsieur Tillier’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-43‘Queen of Sweden’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-44‘Pomponella Fairy Tale’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-45 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-46‘Windermere’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-47‘Pink Pet’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-48‘Stokes’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-51‘Harlow Carr’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-55‘Double Delight’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-54 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-56‘Flamenco’

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-53‘Madame Berkeley’

After we get the business end of things out of the way, I like to take the rest of the time to just stroll through the main sections of the rose garden and enjoy the roses which are not on trial. Roses tend to look amazing in autumn, and this garden was no exception. I was impressed by the amount of growth since my last visit in July, as well. Some, like the Hybrid Tea ‘Proud Land’, were taller than my 6’4″ husband, and many, like the OGR’s, were equally as wide, to boot. I was dancing a little jig to see a collection of one my favorite roses, Madame Ernest Calvat, taking up a section on her own. I was like, “Hello, Friend!!” when I saw her and then I reminded myself that I’m in a public place–although I’m getting used to the odd looks I get when I’m in a rose garden. 😉 I’m also making a very long mental list of the ones I want to reserve this winter for spring 2016.

These photos were taken with my iPhone so the colors aren’t as true as they are in person. So it goes. See better photos of many of these roses when I brought my “real camera” to the Biltmore last May by visiting this post HERE.

Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-57 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-58 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-59 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-2 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-3 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-4 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-49 Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-50Biltmore - 2nd day of rose judging - Sept 2015-31By the by, our visit wasn’t relegated to just the rose garden. We popped in a few other places and took another tour of the house interior. Sidebar: If you’re going to visit this estate, pack a lunch and wear comfortable shoes. I saw some really fancy ladies walking around in heels and they looked fantastic but their feet must have been killing them. Above are some photos from that part of our adventure!

12 thoughts on “Biltmore Rose Trials – 2nd visit

  1. This is great – thanks for giving us a photo tour! My family and I were at Biltmore in late August visiting family and spent the day on the Estate. The gardens were beautiful, the rose garden was quiet – it was in between flushes. There were a few Hybrid Tea roses blooming. Mother of Pearl and Stokes were looking incredible! The rose trial garden was looking rough, it was great to see your photos because only 1 or 2 were in flower while we were there. It’s such a magical place! How often do you have to score the roses on trial?

    1. It really is such a magical place! Based on both of our visits, Stokes and Mother of Pearl must have been in continuous bloom all season. Good to know! 🙂 As far as the trials, my understanding is that there are four judging days spread throughout the year, but I’m still learning how this works, so I’ll be sure to update here on the blog as we go.

  2. How exciting that you got to be a rose judge, Laurie!! I would certainly love to visit that rose garden some day; we do not have anything like that here in Illinois. All your photos are stunning! 🙂
    Lara x

    1. Thank you Lara! It’s been such a treat to have it so nearby and I love getting a chance to share them here. So glad you enjoyed the photos!

    1. Thank you so much, Nora! We hung out with those fish for quite a while. They were HUGE! Would love to have another fish pond someday….

  3. You are living my dream. Not to judge, heavens NO, but just to be there. I was happy to see some familiar roses, and one that is new in my garden, Flemenco Rosita. I liked it so much, I went back for another one. They took off like a rockets, shooting long stems out in every direction. I understand it can get quite large, which is what I need to drape over a birdbath in one area and rise above a garden bench in another. They are blooming machines and have that OGR look we love.

    1. I have two Flamenco that are super small right now so I cannot wait until they get as big as yours. This is so encouraging to hear how well they do! 😀

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *