madisonpostz5

How does Francis Meilland handle MidwestZ5 climate?

Madison Post
last month
last modified: last month



Roses have come to my area! I was astonished to see a giant, healthy Francis Meilland Rose at Home Depot in a 1gal pot with soil. All of Home Depot’s potted dormant roses look great (they aren’t in body bags bare root; but rather in a 1 gal pot with canes displayed)

My dream (That I hope to make a reality someday) is to sell cut flowers with an emphasis on roses, so a rose like Francis Meilland would be incredible! (Highly recommended cutting flowers by Grace Rose Farm as well as Menagerie!)

...except one thing. I’ve read some old threads on here claiming that FM is 1) a stingy bloomer, and 2) isn’t as cold hardy as sellers claim (z5)

What are your guys’ recommendations? I am willing to give FM the prime spot, and to baby it a bit and offer as much winter protection as possible, but is he really worth it? Is he as stingy as some folks claim, or is he the magnificent bloomer in flushes throughout the season? Is there any cold tolerant alternatives that you prefer? (Think for cut flower farming, with main market for weddings)

P.S. I am currently a stay-at home mom and my husband is a full time grad student, so to say we are on a tight budget at the moment is an understatement. Hence why I’m REALLY wanting to make every rose purchase count this year and not hoping

to risk even a $15 flop!

Comments (28)

  • Nippstress Nebraska z5
    last month

    Sadly I have to say not well at all. I simply haven't been able to overwinter Frances Meilland in about 6 tries, the last few in my zone 6 pocket. If you have reliable snow cover it might be worth a gamble, but in my experience it's a long shot. There are better pink HTs that are more likely to be hardy. The lovely glowing comments about profuse blooms are from warmer climates.

    Bottom line is that if money is tight this isn't the one to blow your budget on.

    Cynthia

    Madison Post thanked Nippstress Nebraska z5
  • Madison Post
    Original Author
    last month

    Thanks, that’s super helpful. I am grateful for your honest opinion, and I am sure I’ll find a more reliable alternative!

  • LauraLG Z5b-NwPA
    last month

    Seil, I LOVE Quietness! I’m happy to hear that she comes back well even if pruned to the ground. I was surprised as I walked around my garden the other day to see who had made it through the winter best and of all my roses, 2 of my Bucks looked the worst. Quietness and Prairie Star. I was shocked! Even my Oklahoma looked better. I’m sure I’ll need to prune them to the ground. 😩

  • Aaron Rosarian Zone 5b
    last month

    I have both Francis Meilland and Quietness; I haven't been out to check on them but I will let you know if FM made it! I absolutely love the shape of francis meilland--it's such a pretty rose! Edmunds carries them grafted, maybe that would give you better luck in winter hardiness (just bury the graft?) I bought both own root from Heirloom early in the season so I'm hoping that gave FM long enough to establish itself.

  • Dingo2001 - Z5 Chicagoland
    last month

    I st want to know what Z5 state you live in that has potted roses out for sale?! I don’t even see body bags here yet 😥

  • Aaron Rosarian Zone 5b
    last month

    My FMs both have buds so I think I can (cautiously) saw they made it! We might still get a cold spell or two but I think it bodes well for the odds of success, especially if you're in 5b.

  • joeywyomingz4b
    last month

    Same here Dingo!! Last year we got body bags out the last day of March and the potted roses on Mother's Day weekend.

  • rosecanadian
    last month

    Wow!! Both FM and Quietness are lovely!!!

  • rosesmi5a
    last month

    FM is hardy here in central Michigan with @ 8" of growth left in the spring. Planted on the south side of our house about 10' away from the house's foundation. Beautiful healthy growth, reaches 30"--40" every year. Shoots up a flowering stalk (very hybrid tea like growth), blooms a single flower, repeat. Not prolific, but steady. Not fragrant. Flowers last a long time cut.


    Quietness is a great rose. Dies down to about 4" (rabbits will take roses all the way down), but always comes back to about 30". Many stalks, I can pretty much find a few flowers all summer. I like Q. enough to have four. Very healthy foliage too. Sometimes faintly fragrant esp. on a still quiet morning :)

    Madison Post thanked rosesmi5a
  • Madison Post
    Original Author
    29 days ago

    Thank you all for your input and recommendations of alternative! So to explain my zone situation, I’m actually currently in z6 Indiana where my husband is finishing up his studies to become a pastor. He will be assigned to a congregation at the end of April, and we are not told where we are going until then, although our preference is Iowa (which is Z5). I plan on talking to the placement director on Monday to ask what hardiness zone we are going to be in (he is a huge gardener and would understand lol) so that I can know for sure and not be taken off guard if we end up getting placed in z3 Northern Minnesota or something (I reallllly hope not!)

    It‘s stressing me out quite a bit, because I’m desperately wanting to buy roses to haul with us when we move, but I don’t know where we will be moving! Hopefully the placement director will at least give me an answer on our zone hardiness (And I hope I don’t start to cry at the news of a zone 3!) Sorry, it’s a bit complicated and hard to explain. It’s supposed to be exciting and a surprise to find out where we will be placed, but it’s just plain stressful when you have been waiting 7 years to settle down and buy some plants, but your life is dependent on what zone you'll be in!

  • Mischievous Magpie (CO 5b)
    29 days ago

    Madison, there are beautiful gardens all around the world, all throughout the zones. I know the pain of living in a colder zone where it feels like you're waiting a million years for winter to be over and green to return, but it always does, and I tend to find it extra special since the wait can feel so long. No matter where you end up, even zone 3, you can have a beautiful garden and you'll appreciate all your toughest plants so much when they wake up and bloom each year. Hang in there, uncertainty is so hard but you'll make it through this time. You might not know where you'll be or exactly what varieties of things you'll have, but you'll find comfort in soon-to-be-new plants as time goes by and they become old reliable companions, loved ones even.

    Madison Post thanked Mischievous Magpie (CO 5b)
  • Madison Post
    Original Author
    28 days ago

    Thanks for the encouraging words :) I keep telling myself that (and my husband is constantly reminding me it too!)

    I am sure I will chuckle at myself in a couple years when I look back at this time, and all my uncertainty! That’s pretty much the story of my life thus so far lol. Always concerned about the unknown, but everything always ends up more than okay in the end!

  • rosecanadian
    28 days ago

    Madison - yes, you hit the nail on the head! :) In a few years, you'll wish you could go back to yourself now and say, don't worry so much. It's fine. :) :) It's really good that the placement director understands plants/zones and how important it all is. You're almost at the end. You've gone through 7 years of waiting and thinking and worrying. You're almost at the home stretch. And you can handle wherever they send you! :) You have a lot of people here who can help you in just about any zone. :) :)

    Madison Post thanked rosecanadian
  • Madison Post
    Original Author
    27 days ago

    Well I am happy to say the placement director informed me today we will be in z5 Iowa! So I was very happy to hear that, and we had a long chat about how incredible Iowa soil is for growing vegetables and flowers haha! (He grew up in Iowa and was a pastor there for a time before becoming the placement director for the seminary)

  • Aaron Rosarian Zone 5b
    27 days ago

    Congratulations! I know some roses can do well even in zone 3 so you'll get good ones :) check out Morden Blush especially! I absolutely love mine.

  • rosecanadian
    27 days ago

    Madison - SUCH good news!!! That really takes the worry out of the picture and lets you plan!!!


    Aaron - I loved my Morden Blush when I lived in one of my previous houses...SUCH a beautiful rose...sooo many blooms and it blooms for so long!!! :) :)

    Madison Post thanked rosecanadian
  • Ashley Smith zone 5a
    26 days ago
    last modified: 26 days ago

    Madison, I'm in zone 5 too. One thing I've done is save all my sheltered areas for roses. It makes a huge difference where they're planted, I think. Here's baby Julia Child, on the south side of the house, who was still under snow a few weeks ago:


    Madison Post thanked Ashley Smith zone 5a
  • Madison Post
    Original Author
    21 days ago

    Ashley, wow that is impressive growth!!!

  • MiGreenThumb (Z5b S.Michigan/Sunset 41) Elevation: 1,029 feet
    14 days ago

    Not well in my estimate. I ordered him from Roses Unlimited in either spring of 2017 or 2018 and currently he is two decently thick canes *maybe* ten inches tall if I'm lucky. Plus thrips terrorize his blooms.


    I'm seconding Seil and her vote of 'Quietness'. I ordered mine from The Antique Rose Emporium spring 2017 and is currently around four feet tall and about 2.5-3 feet wide. Cane hardy to the tips but so far mine hasn't really held onto canes grown for more than a couple years before it pulls their resources and focuses on new growth. I hope this will change with maturity because even as nice as one or two thick, tall, hardy and branchy canes are, I am hoping for much more fullness once it's established.


    Francis has a more consistent fragrance while Quietness's I have found to vary muchly depending upon weather and season.


    Steven

    Madison Post thanked MiGreenThumb (Z5b S.Michigan/Sunset 41) Elevation: 1,029 feet
  • rosecanadian
    14 days ago

    Ashley - yes, I love that beautiful new growth!! What a good grower!

  • MiGreenThumb (Z5b S.Michigan/Sunset 41) Elevation: 1,029 feet
    14 days ago

    Quietness vs Francis Meilland

    Steven

    Madison Post thanked MiGreenThumb (Z5b S.Michigan/Sunset 41) Elevation: 1,029 feet
  • rosecanadian
    13 days ago

    I really, really love new growth and rose canes in spring! Beautiful!!

  • Kitty6aNY
    11 days ago
    last modified: 11 days ago

    Madison,

    I love Francis Meilland fragrant rose and it is on order coming soon to my garden. . Heirloom Roses says it is a zone 6. If you wanted to try it I would take special precautions. Even in my zone 6 I plant my zone 6 roses in warmest place near home and/or cover them with burlap and mound them during winter. Burlap will really warm them during winter...I had great results with my burlap on roses fir winter. Even fences near the delicate roses can protect the rose from cold winter wind. potting roses and taking them in garage for winter keeps them warm from freezing wi ter temos, too.


    Francis Meilland has such large 5 inch diameter fragrant blooms-love it!

    BEST WISHES on your choices of roses!

    Madison Post thanked Kitty6aNY
  • nippstress - zone 5 Nebraska
    11 days ago

    Welcome to becoming a new "neighbor" in the next door state of Iowa. That's one more reason to grow Quietness and Earth Song and other terrific Buck roses, as Dr. Buck specifically bred for Iowa weather. I have a similar climate so I'm happy to give my two cents about roses. You probably have more reliable snow cover in the winter than I do, so advice from places like Ohio and Michigan may also be a close fit.

    I totally agree with Ashley that the protected locations can make a huge difference. The south side of my house is a virtual zone 6 and the north and east sides are essentially zone 4. With reliable snow cover I could get away with zone 6-7 roses a lot more often than I do, with surviving cane like others show above.

    Glad the move turned out so well!

    Cynthia

    Madison Post thanked nippstress - zone 5 Nebraska
  • Aaron Rosarian Zone 5b
    5 days ago

    Also I know price might be an issue, but I saw what I'm fairly certain are grafted FM roses at Home Depot today for less than $20 each. Just make sure you bury the graft well below the soil and I think you'll be able to enjoy it without worrying too much.

  • Sunny Mississippi 8a
    4 days ago

    I wish my Home Depot was your Home Depot..

  • palytoxinz5il
    4 days ago

    I am in zone 5b IL. During the first 2 years, despite a prime location, my grafted FM was a one cane wander with winter kill all the way down to ground level, and I get 2-3 flowers a year. In the 3rd year, I moved him to a less noticeable location, and buried him deeper. He improved somewhat and rewarded me with 5-6 flowers that year. He is slowly growing better, and looking good right now after a mild winter. I hope to see double digit flowers this year, as my patience is running thin.

    Claire