(Ferndale Red China shown)
Twiggy, smooth-wooded plants that seemingly put flowers out of every joint and crevice. Most are compact and short to moderate growers. Flowers come in white, pink, and a hundred shades of cherry crimson, the colors intensifying with passing days. A few, bearing Tea rose blood, are shaded with apricot and yellow. In introducing our "Mystery" Chinas, we would do well to warn the collector that we merely pass these on as they come to us, trying to avoid what appear to be obvious duplicates. Even those red and pink Chinas which we offer with "official" names may not be what they are believed to be. Nonetheless, this group of roses is so exceptional in the garden, and there are such charming variations, we cannot recommend them too highly!
Chinas are very twiggy growers which seem capable of putting new growth on from any given point on the plant, and can have dormant growth buds between leaves, on peduncles, even at the base of old flowers. Nearly every new growth ends in flower, hence the exceptionally continuous flowering of Chinas.
We recognize three principal types;
1) the old monthly rose group, like Old Blush, which are more upright and open than the red Chinas,
2) the red Chinas like White Pearl in Red Dragon's Mouth, which form a dense intercrossing mass of light wood and are often more wide than tall, and
3) the more upright open spreading Chinas which can get quite tall, to 7' or more, like Mutabilis.