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The Bonica Rose is one of the world's favourite roses, and one of the best-known award winners. Naturally, it is in the Modern Rose Hall of Fame. It is a Floribunda and was introduced into the rose world in 1981 by Marie-Louise Meilland of the famous Meilland family of rose breeders in France. Another of their roses is 'Papa Meilland', probably the most favourite of all time.
Four of their roses are in the Rose Hall of Fame, and they are exceptional. They are: Bonica, Papa Meilland, 'Peace', and 'Pierre de Ronsard'. What a family! Many of their other roses have won award after award. Even the beautiful 'Paul McCartney' rose is one of theirs. If you see it named as 'Rosa 'MEIdomonac', it is the same rose. It seems to be a relatively new usage.
Bonica is a Floribunda shrub which, to me, means super value for money. They are smothered in rose blooms, season after season. This one will grow to 3 or 4 feet in height and it will spread up to 4 feet wide, so give it plenty of room. It even has a climbing form (see below).
It has a mild fragrance and all the qualities you could possibly want in a rose. It is hardy, disease resistant, very easy to grow, and will flower from mid spring through to autumn. The blooms are double and delightful.
Delicate Clusters of Pale Pink Bonica.
Once again, as for all easy to grow roses, all it needs is good drainage. It asks for little else. Good organic mulch, or compost mulch will enrich the soil, and if it could do with a lift, give it some slow release fertilizer made especially for roses. But honestly, this rose could thirve with very little except an occasional watering. Naturally, the better the care, the better the rose, but don't kill it with kindness.
Make sure it gets at least 6 hours of sun every day, or preferably more. This goes for most, but not all, roses. Bonica will tolerate a little shade.
The Bonica Rose can even be bought and grown as a standard rose which is a rose which has been trained to grow up a central cane or support which may reach 60 cms or even 90 cms. This amazing rose is also available as a climber which will reach 12 feet or more. The climbing form is a sport of the original shrub rose. To see the climbing form just click right here.
If you want to appreciate its beautiful red hips, then don't deadhead it. But to increase the flowering season, always deadhead whenever you can. This encourages the plant to put energy into the flowers rather than into the stems and leaves.