Saturday, July 18, 2009

Working with Midnight Blue

Tom Carruth's 'Midnight Blue' has turned out to be a decent breeder for me, often delivering shimmering purples and amaranths and occasionally black-reds, as illustrated here. This is one of the 49-08 seedlings blooming for the first time. I wouldn't normally consider 'Smoky' as a parent, but I made this cross on a whim last year. This is the only seedling I kept from a small group of seedlings. The color and petal texture cannot be photographed accurately; you should see how velvety the petals are, and the quality of the deep garnet coloring. It is branching from the base even before the bloom is fully open, which is hopefully an indicator of good shrub architecture. Time will tell.


  1. Just curious, why would you not consider Smoky as a parent? For me, its hardiness out here, color, and fragrance have always made it a favorite, and this year I used it on almost everything.

    On the other hand, Midnight Blue is failing miserably for me. The plant is weak (maybe it's just my plant...) and the flowers can't stand up to the high-country sun. I might have a couple of hips when using it as a pollen parent, but if I recall correctly it didn't set hips of its own this year. What am I doing wrong? (Maybe I need to make cuttings and get it on its own roots?)

    Beautiful rose! Can't wait to see how it matures.

  2. I do love the black tints it takes on the edges of the petals. Does it burn in the sun like some other black tinted roses?

  3. I am considering putting Little Chief on Midnight Blue. I think that could produce something pretty cool.