Portland's International Rose Test Garden
Portland's Rose Society was founded in 1889, and the city's collection of hybrids, floribundas, and grandifloras has been growing ever since. In 1917 the International Rose Test Garden opened as a testing ground for new varieties of roses. Some of its first plantings were rose refugees from Europe during World War I. Today, over 10,000 plants and 550 species slope towards the city's downtown horizon.
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'Yellow Brick Road,' left, was awarded Portland Best Shrub 2009. It was locally bred in Oregon.
In 1912, W.J. Hofmann, the first Rosarian Prime Minister was knighted under the 'Hadley' rose, left. Almost a century later, in 1911, his great grandson was knighted under the same variety.
'Cinco de Mayo,' left, was a 2009 All-American Rose Selections (AARS) Winner.
Many of the garden's first roses were refugees—breeders in Europe worried that their hybrids wouldn't survive World War II, and they sought safe ground for their roses elsewhere. Portland's Rose Society volunteered their garden, and they soon received rootstocks of many European hybrids.
'Betty Boop' roses, left, recipient of the 2001 Portland Gold Medal.
The 'Mardi Gras,' left, won Best Floribunda Rose 2012.
Winged thorn rose (Rosa sericea), left.
'Sweetness' floribunda, left, won Most Fragrant Rose in 2010 Portland's Best Rose Contest.
'Etoile de Feul,' left, was introduced by French breeder Joseph Pernet-Ducher in 1921, and added to the Royal Rosarian Garden the following year.