The Rose of the Year 2022 - Its a Wonderful Life

 I was so lucky the other day to be invited to the launch of the Rose of the Year 2022.

I was invited by Marilyn of Roses UK to go to Stockton Bury Gardens for the event.  Roses UK promote UK roses, they are not breeders or sellers of roses.  Every year a rose is awarded 'Rose of the Year'. 
This is Marilyn presenting the rose 'Its a Wonderful Life'.  It was named before the pandemic and yet feels like an apt name as we hopefully start to emerge from the difficult times we have all had.  It is not named after the film, but they did have to have permission to use the name nonetheless.  I wouldn't mind if it was named after the film as it is such a favourite of mine.

In order to get the award the rose is trialled for two years.  This rose, bred by Dickson Roses, would have been plants in 2016, selected in 2018 and then they allow a couple of years for breeders to build up enough stocks before it is launched.  Rose growing is not a speedy process!

We had a lovely lunch and then went wandering the wonderful gardens.  I have visited Stockton Bury previously, it turns out if was four years ago, which seems an age ago now.   I had always intended to return and it was delight to see the gardens again.
Before heading into the gardens themselves, I spent a moment just watching the sheep, it was a peaceful moment.
The gardens were looking very colourful.
I walked around remembering the touches that make this garden so special.
There is such a feeling of calm in this garden.  It was a moment to breathe and just be.  I think this is my favourite sculpture in the garden.  Like all good sculptures it makes me stop and pause a moment to look at it.  I find it a very peaceful piece.
It also felt a luxury to have this garden to ourselves, just a small group of people, several of whom I know.  In a Covid world such gatherings are even more precious than I already thought they are.  I hope we never forget how much was lost during the darkest lockdown days.

We had the most lovely day and left clutching an 'Its a Wonderful Life' rose that was kindly given to each of us.  It has been flowering well and it has the scent of water melons.  It is a delight.

Thank you to Marilyn and Roses UK for inviting us.  Thank you to Tamsin and the team for welcoming us to their garden and for the lovely lunch.  

What about Rose of the Year 2021 I hear you ask?
This is the 2021 Rose of the Year: Belle de Jour bred by Delbard.  Which is also a fantastic rose.  It has scent like vanilla ice cream and the flowers fade beautifully as they age.  

Stay safe and be kind.

For more from the Blackberry Garden follow me on Twitter and Facebook