Pierre De Ronsard (also known as Eden rose) is an extremely popular rose, and for good reason.
It is a modern rose with old-fashioned flowers. They are large and full with over 40 petals and are shaped like round cabbages, opening to disclose a multitude of infolded petals, just like an old Tea Rose. The colour is divine: creamy white on the outside and lavender pink in the centre. As noted in one of my books, it’s the colour scheme you often see in the full blossomed roses depicted on Victorian fabrics and wallpapers. For this reason, it is the perfect rose to cover an arch in a period house.
The plant is of moderate vigour and its repeat bloom is excellent. The leaves are dark and glossy. It is almost thornless, making it suitable for arches over walkways.
The flowers are carried on stems long enough for cutting and they last extremely well in a vase.
With all these attributes, it seems mean to find fault with Pierre de Ronsard, however, there are a couple. There is a light fragrance but it isn’t really much to speak of. The flowers bruise easily, especially if it is breezy or raining, and the dead flowers hang on the plant and distract from the beautiful blooms, so you need to dead-head regularly.
Meilland introduced a series of roses called ‘Romanticas’ in response to the popularity of David Austin Roses, modern roses with an old-fashioned look. Pierre De Ronsard is part of that series.
The rose was named after Pierre De Ronsard (1524 – 85) who was a court poet in Scotland and France and a very keen gardener. The name commemorates the 400th anniversary of his death.
Pierre De Ronsard was introduced in 1987 by Meilland. It is a climber but can also be used as a free-standing shrub.