Finally Blooming

This post, “Finally Blooming” was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana 

One of the signature plants of the South is the Lady Banks rose.  My mother grew this climbing rose and had one in the back garden that was huge.  Every spring it was covered in small, double, yellow flowers.  This rose is a vigorous climber.  I remember it going into a nearby tree.  This once-blooming rose usually starts showing its flowers in early April here.

I have always wanted a Lady Banks rose, but I could never find one.  Then, about three years ago I found a white Lady Banks at, believe it or not, K-Mart.  It had one small bloom, so I knew that it was labeled correctly.  This one, too, is a once-blooming rose with small, double, white flowers.  The white works better where it is placed than the yellow would, so I wasn’t disappointed I couldn’t get the same one my mother had.  The white Lady Banks is not supposed to be as hardy as the yellow, but this far south, I don’t think it will be a problem.  The white version also is supposed to be more fragrant, but I haven’t noticed that yet.  Maybe as the rose bush gets bigger and has more flowers the fragrance will be noticeable.  The fragrance is said to be resemble violets.

This rose blooms on old wood, so it needs to be pruned immediately after blooming.  One of the nice things about this rose is that it is almost completely thornless, so it does well on an arbor that people often walk under.

The year I bought Lady Banks, the bloom time was over.  The next year there were a few blooms, but the bush was still small.  This is the first year that I have had any significant show of blooms, and I can’t wait until Lady Banks is older and puts on a big display of flowers.


1 Comment

  1. Brenda Kula said,

    March 28, 2008 at 3:05 pm

    Walli, my neighbor, and I went to a local Tyler outdoor vendor event today downtown where they were selling plants. And that’s just what we bought! I bought the fragrant white one, and she bought the yellow one. A lovely man from South Africa with the most wonderful accent was selling them. We couldn’t understand him well enough to know what they were. So now we know: he was saying “Lady Banks.” When I saw your entry I immediately when out back and yelled for Walli to come look at this blog and see them!

    How serendipitious for you. I am sure you will love this plant. It can get to be very big, so be forewarned. My mother kept hers trimmed back so it was not rampant. I think this rose is wonderful even though it is a one time bloomer.

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