Senescence – the process of ageing – sounds a little bit sombre. However, this natural procedure brings with it interesting developments in some plants, such as colour shifting! We see it regularly in autumn when the leaves of deciduous leaves turn orange and begin to drop. When it comes to the Rose Everglow, senescence is visible in the flowers, which transform from a creamy yellow and red, to brilliant white and red.
How to grow Rose Everglow Ruby
Flowering time: July to September
Location: Containers and sunny borders
Soil: Fertile, humus-rich, moist, well-drained soil
Light: Full sun
Water: Water generously until established
Care: Apply a specialised rose fertiliser each spring
Size: 80cm height, 50cm spread
How was Rose Everglow Ruby created?
The Netherlands based Select Breeding initiated the crossing for Rose Everglow Ruby in 2013, and the first flowers were spotted on the plant a year later. This was a one-of-a-kind special variety, as the company were breeding and selecting mainly floribunda-type roses; seeing its potential and uniqueness, they popped it to one side until 2018, when plant breeder representative Plantipp came to visit.
Peter at Plantipp was impressed by the striking colour changing flowers, which spurred Select Breeding on to trial on a bigger scale, and soon after, handed the project over to a few specialised growers. In 2020, Rose Everglow Ruby became available for commercial introduction.
What’s different about this plant?
It’s impossible to talk about this plant without mentioning its colour – not only the colour-changing capabilities, but also the striking boldness of the colour itself. The ruby red has just a touch of blue in its palette, bringing forth a more pink-toned red shade that stands out wonderfully amongst the rich green foliage.
|Why does senescence occur?
Senescence is the process of ageing, and it occurs naturally in the cells of all living things – for example, as humans, senescence is usually visible in wrinkling skin, age spots and greying hair. However, while many of us (not all!) try to hide our senescence with creams, hair dye and even surgical procedures, we tend to view senescence in plants with admiration.
Programmed senescence in plants seems to be influenced by plant hormones, but this process can be sped up by environmental factors such as too much or too little light exposure, over and underwatering, and other stressful conditions such as over pruning and exposure to harsh weather conditions.
When it comes to plants like Rose Everglow Ruby, its programmed senescence causes a change in colour in its flowers. The flowers of some other plants can also change colour due to a shift in soil pH (for example, hydrangeas).
Where can you plant Rose Everglow Ruby?
The plant has a compact habitat which makes it ideal for small gardens, courtyards, and patio and balcony use. When allowed, it will grow up to 80cm in height with a 50cm spread, and is well suited to pots and borders in a sunny position. Rose Everglow Ruby is winter hardy to -20 degrees Celsius.
Where can you buy Rose Everglow Ruby?
Plant of the Month is sponsored by Plantipp, a company based in The Netherlands who handle the introduction of new plants into Europe.
See every Plant of the Month here.
Michael has been involved with gardening and plants since he was just five years old. He is a self-professed Plant Geek, and was listed in the Sunday Times top 20 most influential people in the gardening world, thanks to his plant hunter role at Thompson & Morgan.
Michael was responsible for new plant introductions such as the Egg and Chips plant and the FuchsiaBerry and keeps busy travelling the world in search of new plants as well as lecturing worldwide, including stints in Japan. He is very active on social media – so why not give him a follow at @mr_plantgeek or Facebook. You can also listen to The Plant Based Podcast with Michael and co-host Ellen-Mary on iTunes, Spotify and Google.