Hybrid Musks

related pages: photo gallery of hybrid musk roses

Hybrid Musks In 1896 Peter Lambert introduced 'Aglaia' bred from Rosa multiflora and 'Rêve d'Or', a Noisette with Tea and Musk in its ancestry. 'Trier' then descended from a seedling of 'Aglaia', and was introduced in 1904; which propagated a new class of roses called the Hybrid Musks. Hybrid Musks were largely developed by Reverend Joseph Pemberton of England, and his successors Anne and Jack Bentall, using 'Trier' and Hybrid Teas in the breeding. Graham Thomas noted that Pemberton had a high regard for scent in roses. This can be displayed in Pemberton's breedings of the Hybrid Musks.

The scent of many of the Hybrid Musks is released freely on the air, especially on warm, humid days. This characteristic is passed down from R. multiflora. The scent can be carried far away. Helen van Pelt Wilson and Léonie Bell noted that the scent was like the hot honeyed essence of R. multiflora. The scent can be described as irresistible and un-rose like. It is like an infusion of honey and fruit, some clove, and the orris of tea rose. The vapors are entrancing and hypnotic; they parade in clouds through the air. Mixed with heliotrope and the scented hues of other candied ornaments in the garden, I confess they are a potion of bliss.

Hybrid Musks are elegant shrub roses. Some can be climbers, pillars or hedges. They are best grown freely and pruned with a light hand, allowing their individual forms to develop. Many tolerate shade. They mostly flower on short lateral and sub-lateral shoots produced from second-year or older wood. They do not regularly produce vigorous basal growths once established, this is why it is important to prune or shape judiciously. They are fine cluster roses. Their colors, often times infused with metallic notes of gold or copper, give charm to the garden. Many of the flowers in a panicle may open at once, instead of in succession.

List of Hybrid Musks Featured on this site:
Bishop Darlington, Pemberton, 1925 Felicia, Pemberton, 1928
Buff Beauty Lavender Lassie
Cornelia, Pemberton, 1925 Pax, Pemberton, 1918
Danaë, Pemberton, 1915 Penelope, Pemberton, 1924
Eva Vanity, Pemberton, 1920

Illustration of Prosperity (upper left), Penelope (upper right), Balerina (lower left) and Vanity (lower right) by Doanld Myall from The Book of the Rose by Michael Gibson