By Stan V. Griep
American Rose Society Consulting Master Rosarian – Rocky Mountain District
Kordes roses have a reputation for beauty and hardiness. Let’s look at where Kordes roses come from and what, exactly, is a Kordes rose.
History of Kordes Roses
Kordes roses come from Germany. This rose type’s origin roots date back to 1887 when Wilhelm Kordes founded a nursery for the production of rose plants in a small town near Hamburg, Germany. The business did very well and was moved to Sparrieshoop, Germany in 1918 where it is still in operation to this day. At one time, the company had a peak production of over 4 million roses a year, which made them one of the top rose nurseries in Europe.
The Kordes rose breeding program is still one of the largest in the world. Each rose plant selected from many seedlings each year must go through a seven year trial before being released for sale to the general public. These roses are exceptionally hardy. Being a cold climate Rosarian, I know that a rose that has survived its trial period in a cold climate country is bound to be good in my rose beds.
The top goals of the Kordes-Sohne rose breeding program are winter hardiness, quick repeat blooms, fungal disease resistance, unique colors and forms of bloom, abundance of blooms, fragrance, self-cleaning, good height and fullness of plant and rain resistance. This seems like a lot to ask of any plant or rose bush, but lofty goals make for good plants for the gardeners of the world.
Kordes-Sohne roses of Germany have many different varieties of roses available for your rose beds, such as Hybrid Tea, Floribunda, Grandiflora, shrub, tree, climbing and miniature rose bushes. Not to mention their beautiful old roses and ground cover roses.
Fairytale Kordes Roses
Their series of Fairytale roses are both a delight to the eye as well as a delight in their naming. Having a Fairytale rose bed would be a grand rose bed indeed with rose bushes like:
- Cinderella Rose (pink)
- Queen of Hearts Rose (salmon-orange)
- Caramella Rose (amber yellow)
- Lions Rose (cream white)
- Brothers Grimm Rose (bright orange & yellow)
- Novalis Rose (lavender)
And this is to name only a few in this wonderful line of shrub rose bushes. Some say this line is the Kordes roses answer to the David Austin English shrub roses and a fine line of competition they are too!
Some of the popular Kordes rose bushes I have in my rose beds or have had over the years are:
- Liebeszauber Rose (red hybrid tea)
- Lavaglut Rose (deep rich red floribunda)
- Kordes’ Perfecta Rose (Pink and white blend)
- Valencia Rose (Coppery yellow hybrid tea)
- Hamburg Girl Rose (salmon hybrid tea)
- Petticoat Rose (white floribunda)