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Last days of summer: Explorer Roses are fading all over Canada

(Added 16 August 2010)

‘Tis the last rose of summer
Left blooming alone;
All her lovely companions
Are faded and gone;
No flower of her kindred,
No rosebud is nigh,
To reflect back her blushes,
To give sigh for sigh.
-Thomas Moore, 1805

Agriculture Canada began a rose breeding program in the 1960s at Morden Research Station in Manitoba, under the direction of breeder Felicitas Svejda. Her objective was to use roses from Europe to create a hardy and disease resistant series of roses to withstand harsh conditions across Canada. The resulting roses were named “ The Explorer Series” with rose cultivars named after Canadian Explorers such as Champlain, Cabot and Henry Kelsey.

The full series, grown from original plant cuttings, is part of the rose collection at the Arboretum, Central Experimental Farm, Ottawa

For more about the “Canadian Rose” and the first all Canadian Rose Show

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