I tried rugosas in my garden as an experiment, after receiving Rose rugosa alba seeds in a trade. I actually expected them to melt down, because when I thought of rugosas I thought of Maine and Alaska. However, the species do beautifully here. Not a speck of disease and they bloom all season. They've only been completely covered in blooms one spring, interestingly enough in a drought year -- it would seem too many calories equals less flowers. But they always bloom enough for me and I love them.
I first saw 'Hansa' at Witherspoon Nursery in Durham. Witherspoon sells a lot of roses I don't care for -- hybrid teas, grandifloras, and floribundas, roses that for the most part die like crazy here, or worse, hang about looking sickly and reproachful -- but their Hansa was drop-dead gorgeous. What is that purple rose?!?!?! I must have it!
'Hansa' isn't really purple, it's magenta, but it does look purple in low light, and the coloring and texture of the petals has a very rich and velvety effect. The fragrance is strong, a mix of damask and cloves.
Thanks to Katarina at roses and stuff for hosting Blooming Friday!