Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Soft Kashmir

'Kashmir', first day
I grow or have grown several roses belonging to Bailey Nurseries Easy Elegance series, and I certainly have mixed feelings for the roses in this group.  I've written negatively about 'High Voltage' and with a positive endorsement of  'Sweet Fragrance'.  I also currently grow 'Paint the Town', 'Hot Wonder' (bred by Ping Lim and introduced by Bailey's although it may not be listed today as an Easy Elegance rose), and 'Yellow Brick Road'.   I tried and lost 'Super Hero' and 'The Finest'.  I finally shovel-pruned 'High Voltage', a vigorous rose that only bloomed once a year, had no fragrance, and died when I transplanted it to a less prominent site.  I suppose in all fairness that I should disclose that I didn't take very good care of it after transplant.

'Kashmir', about day 4
I believe, however, that Easy Elegance 'Kashmir' is going to be a keeper.  'Kashmir', also known as BAImir, is a dark red, very double rose bred by Ping Lim and introduced by Bailey Nurseries in 2009.  One the first day of its appearance, 'Kashmir' will form a tight bud of almost perfect Hybrid Tea form, and then over the next few days it opens wider to a full blossom but still keeps the deep red color on those velvet-textured petals.  There is an occasional white streak on a base petal or two.  The official description from Bailey's suggests that it was named 'Kashmir' because of the "cashmere" softness of the petals.  The blooms are around 3-4" in diameter once fully open, and the bush has remained globular in shape, about 3.5 feet in diameter and height in my garden.  It blooms in flushes over the season and the red doesn't "burn" badly in the hot summer sun, but there is little fragrance.  I suppose one can't ask for everything.

'Kashmir' had some buds knocked off by the recent hail, so it is not blooming as prolifically as usual this year.  At first flush, this rose was covered last year.  You'll also have to excuse the grass growing at the base of the bush in the full view photo at the left.  I'm a little embarrassed that I'm just now getting around to weeding this summer and haven't got here yet.  On the positive side, 'Kashmir' has had no pruning this year either.  I was a bit concerned over one cane with some signs of Rose Rosette on it last year, so I've left it alone after pruning the aforementioned cane to the ground, to see if the RRD returns.  So far my pruning appears to have been successful.  The foliage is very healthy, no blackspot at all, and it never needs spraying.  My three-year-old bush has been cane hardy here in Zone 5.

I think 'Kashmir' is a good landscape rose, and the blooms are nice enough and on long enough stems to cut and bring indoors, even if it isn't 'Olympiad' or 'Mr. Lincoln'.  I can positively say that, so far, this is a plant-and-forget rose, and I prefer the size, form, and color to my detested 'Knock Out.'

1 comment:

  1. Rose season again thank goodness, although my are so late this year! I only have 2 blooms out in the garden - one on 'Paul's Scarlet' and one on 'Alfred de Dalmas'. April was so cold that they are only just forming buds. Are you the same or are you surrounded by flowers, Professor ?


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