With the installation of our Earth-Kind® Protocol Rose Demonstration Garden, Chadwick Arboretum was fortunate to collaborate with Bailey Nurseries to exhibit the new, Easy Elegance® collection of low-maintenance roses using the Earth-Kind® protocol introduced by Texas A&M University providing maximum garden and landscape enjoyment while preserving and protecting the environment.
Easy Elegance® Collection of Roses
The Easy Elegance® collection of low-maintenance roses was developed by Ping Lim, a rose hybridizer employed by Bailey Nurseries. These roses offer disease resistance, winter hardiness, and a range of sizes and flower colors. Using Earth-Kind® protocol, Caye Aiello, OSU Extension Master Gardener and rosarian, spear-headed the installation of our Earth-Kind® Protocol Rose Demonstration Garden. She received guidance and support for this project from recognized rosarian and Earth-Kind® promoter George Meiling (1942–2013) and Professor Steve George from Texas A&M University where the Earth-Kind® protocol and research was initiated. Caye continues to oversee the maintenance of our Earth-Kind® Protocol Rose Demonstration Garden with help from Chadwick Arboretum & Learning Gardens volunteers.
This garden utilizes a landscape maintenance program called Earth-Kind®. The Earth-Kind® program was introduced by Texas A&M University, and seeks to combine research-proven methods with environmental responsibility. According to the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Earth-Kind® website:
Rose Rosette Disease
Rose Rosette Disease (RRD) is emerging as one of the most devastating diseases of roses. The disease is of great concern to the nursery industry because it is known to be lethal to the wild Rosa multiflora and potentially to all cultivated roses, including shrub types, hybrid teas, and miniature roses. Even cultivars that are known for their exceptional disease resistance, such as Knock Out® roses, are susceptible to RRD. Losses can occur anywhere roses are grown, including nurseries, homes, landscapes, and botanical gardens. In recent years, the incidence of the disease has grown exponentially in the Midwest and Southern United States due to an increased use of mass plantings of shrub roses in residential and commercial landscapes. For more information, click Rose Rosette Disease.
Unfortunately, our rose gardens, like many others across the Midwest and Southern United States, have succumbed to the Rose Rosette Disease. We lost over 80 percent of our roses, including many from the Easy Elegance® collection.