By Di Durston, Tea Bag PRHRiA
In 2001, I poked a few rose hips into the soil and put a name on a stick (SAFRANO HIPS) and
waited for the magic. Little rose seedlings popped up and the strongest grower of these I potted
up to observe its development. Rose seedlings will flower within a few months if you are fortunate
or it may take longer. Not all of the crop of seedlings will be worth keeping, so I encourage you at
this point to be ruthless with the discards.
Sometimes you will have a lucky first strike and this is what happened with my ‘Saint Mary’s Girl’. When it flowered, it was pearly pink and growing from the yellow colour of the parent plant. I was going through a strong pink coloured phase at the time and this little flower from a chance cross was charming.
The seed parent of the open pollinated pink rose was ‘Safrano’, a Tea Rose bred in France by
Beauregard. 1839. I believe that the bees only had a short hop from the rose ‘Fritz Nobis’ 1940
Kordes, Germany. ‘Fritz Nobis’ is a beautiful pale pink shrub rose that shows many stamens in the
open flower and probably the pollen parent.
I named my rose ‘Saint Mary’s Girl’ as I was a student there many years ago. I gifted the rose to the school to use as a fundraiser and we produced many hundred to sell at the schools 95year celebration in 2016.
This rose is registered in the USA and is on the Australian Rose Register.