I imagine that most of our members have at least one rose in their gardens and many regard it as their favourite flower but this is the only one that has found a place in our list. However, this beautiful flower is well deserving of that place.
Bred by Cants of Colchester and introduced in 1921, Rosa ‘Mrs. Oakley Fisher’ is a Hybrid Tea that flowers throughout the season on a slender bush up to about 1m high. Peter Beales describes the colour as “a combination of orange and yellow without the harshness of other roses of similar colour”, and I think that sums it up very well. This image was taken in a member’s garden and you can just make out the underplanting of purple-leaved heuchera providing a stunning association. Graham Stuart Thomas also thought very highly of this plant referring to its shapely buds and delicious fragrance.
“But who was Mrs. Oakley Fisher?” I hear you ask. Well, via a rose lover in the US and a website called ‘helpmefind’, I found out that she was the first elected Lady Member of The National Rose Society Council, January 1921. Nearly one hundred years later she is remembered by this lovely flower.