Autumn roses in bloom

“Now that your rose is in bloom...”

The autumn roses in Laguna are the loveliest of the entire season. And what a season it has been! A mild winter ensured that the first rose was in bloom the day before Super Bowl Sunday. Since then, gardeners have struggled to find enough vases to keep pace with their bountiful production of blossoms.


In compiling fall’s list of roses, I have selected roses that are particularly fragrant, disease resistant and easy to grow.

Especially fragrant:

David Austin holds the shrub rose, Grüss an Aachen, in high esteem. He has even adopted it as one of his English roses. The deeply cupped blooms have a pleasing fragrance, and turn a pearl pink to creamy white.

Possessing an old rose perfume, Orthello is a standout rose. It produces large, cupped blooms of crimson fading to purple. Florists tell me that the blooms are excellent in flower arrangements!


Tiffany is treasured for its large pink blossoms that are very fragrant. This hybrid tea rose grows vigorously upright with long stems and elegant buds.

Disease resistant:

The emerald green foliage of Pristine is the first indicator that mildew should think twice about invading this tough rose. Its graceful, crimson blooms edged with white look wonderful in a vase.

Royal Bonica continues the trend of modern roses, free blooming, disease resistant, and not fussy about pruning. Pale pink blooms cover very green and shiny foliage.

I recall when I first introduced Winifred Coulter into my garden.

That was nearly seven years ago, and its glossy green leaves have yet to be sprayed for either insect or disease. This floribunda’s rose pink blooms seem almost never-ending.

Easy to grow:

One of the most rewarding of the climbers is the single, blood red blooms of Altissimo. Very fragrant and excellent as a cut flower, this rose blooms freely throughout the year. This is the strongest red climbing rose for Laguna gardens.


A vigorous and bushy plant, Heritage is a perfect rose. The blooms are a lovely soft pink with a nice fragrance. Not fussy, it requires very little care.

The non-stop bloomer, Iceberg, is a climber and bush that doesn’t quite reach pure white in our coastal clime. Very fragrant and nearly disease resistant; if you only have space for one rose, this is the one.

The rose reigns supreme in our garden. In fact, if Catharine had her way (and of course, who says she doesn’t?), the entire garden would be filled with roses (well, maybe a few vegetables). See you next time.

STEVE KAWARATANI is happily married to award-winning writer Catharine Cooper. He can be reached at (949) 497-8168, or e-mail to