We would like to invite you to visit the Boulder-Dushanbe Teahouse Rose Garden in downtown Boulder across from the city park. The unique treasure of an intricately handcrafted, traditional Tajik Teahouse was gifted to the city of Boulder by the citizens of Dushanbe, Tajikistan, one of Boulder’s Sister Cities, in 1988. In time, the design of the structure was amended to be able to house a restaurant business, construction was completed, and the Teahouse opened in spring of 1998. Both the inside and outside of this fabulous building are elaborately adorned with colorful carved, painted and sculpted elements, mostly traditional, plus some contemporary artistry.
It is traditional for a Central Asian teahouse to be set in a garden of fragrant roses, and the Boulder Valley Rose Society was asked to design and plant a rose garden in the entry space and surrounding the outdoor dining patios, providing a beautiful sensory environment. The garden, which also functions as the hardy rose demonstration garden of the Boulder Valley Rose Society (BVRS) was designed by Eve Reshetnik and Mikl Brawner, planted by the BVRS shortly before the building’s completion and has been maintained organically by the dedicated members of BVRS ever since (25 years!) with no pesticides and no chemical fertilizers. All these roses are ‘Own-Root’ as opposed to the commonly available but short-lived grafted roses. This extraordinary garden of Sustainable Roses is living proof that highly desirable roses can thrive here for decades without chemical inputs.
June is the climax month to take in the full sensory experience of color and fragrance in the Teahouse Rose Garden, but many of the roses there continue to bloom well into autumn. We hope that when you visit this garden you will be inspired to grow roses and to join the Boulder Valley Rose Society, which, like most plant societies these days, could use some younger members to help with the work we have been doing for these 25 years. Helping to maintain the Teahouse garden is a great way to learn from seasoned rose growers how to do the feeding and pruning. Membership is very affordable, includes invitations to presentations, meetings, and Teahouse work sessions. To learn more and join go to Boulder Valley Rose Society. Also visit Harlequin’s Gardens Rose page.
Harlequin’s Gardens sells many of the rose varieties you can see (and smell!) at the Boulder Dushanbe Teahouse Garden, and with a lot of our potted rose plants in bloom, this is an excellent time to come and choose from our large and wide-ranging selection, from romantic heirloom antiques to super-hardy Canadian-bred varieties, to continual-blooming ‘patio’ roses for smaller gardens.
At Harlequin’s Gardens we specialize in what we call ‘Sustainable Roses’ because we want our customers to enjoy growing roses without having to resort to toxic sprays or frequent maintenance. Over our 30-year history we have studied and trialed many different roses so we can offer those that perform best in Colorado conditions. Our approach is to offer ‘Own-Root’ roses (not grafted), which remain true to variety even when exceptionally cold temperatures kill canes back to the roots, and to offer varieties with proven disease resistance.
Here’s an introduction to just a few of the wonderful roses at the Teahouse:
Shrub Rose to 5-6’ high and wide, introduced 1956. Cold-hardy to Zone 5.
Probably the most asked-about rose at the Teahouse! The center of each large light-yellow bloom is graced with a prominent, lush ring of long, curved deep-red stamens, giving it an unmatched natural elegance. They also possess a wonderful, spicy and sweet fragrance! Golden Wings blooms repeatedly from June until hard frost, and the blooms are followed by a glorious crop of large golden hips in autumn. A versatile rose, it looks appropriate in almost any style of garden.
Unique Heirloom Shrub Rose to 4-5’ high and wide. Cold-hardy to Zone 4.
A five-star rose with wonderful old-rose fragrance, covered with lovely 3” wide blush-pink blooms of old-fashioned double form, and lots of unusual gray-green foliage on a gracefully arching shrub. Stanwell Perpetual begins blooming in late May, and barely takes a break until late fall. It blooms through the heat of July, when most other roses are taking a break. Introduced in 1838, Stanwell is thought to be the result of a cross between the once-blooming Rosa spinosissima (Scotsbriar), with its finely pinnate gray-green leaves and spiny red canes, and repeat-blooming Autumn Damask. Hardy, adaptable and disease-free!
Hybrid Robusta Large Shrub/Climber, 4-8’ high and 6’ wide. Cold-hardy to Zone 5.
Robusta is a rose you simply cannot ignore. It grabs your attention even from a distance, with its profusion of 4”-wide lipstick-red single to semi-double flowers in large clusters almost continuously through the season! This upright shrub develops thick canes, clothed in beautiful, large, glossy bright green leaves and undeniably fierce prickles. The blooms are lightly fragrant. Use Robusta for a focal point, a fence, hedge or impenetrable barrier. No other hardy rose offers this kind of red impact for so long! Robusta was introduced in 1979 by Kordes Roses in Germany.
JOAN’S PINK PERPETUAL
Found Heirloom Shrub Rose, probable Hybrid Perpetual, 4-6’ high and 2-4’ wide. Cold-hardy to Zone 4.
One of the mystery roses from the historical Fairmount Cemetery in Denver. Deep, rosy pink blooms are large, very full and deliciously fragrant on a sturdy, healthy and hardy shrub. Heavy spring bloom is followed by some repeat through the summer. The study name “JoAn’s Pink Perpetual” is dedicated to the proactive efforts to protect Fairmount Cemetery’s roses by former publicity director JoAn Cullen.
Canadian-bred Shrub/short Climber, to 5’ high and wide (7-8’ high x 3’ wide as a climber). Cold-hardy to Zone 3.This double, pink rose looks so charming and old-fashioned, it’s hard to imagine just how tough it really is. But we’ve not only had John Davis climbing happily at the Teahouse for 20 years, but he’s also been thriving as a shrub on the sun-and-wind-battered west side of the blue house at Harlequin’s Gardens for even longer! Taking everything in stride, the blooms don’t fade, they continue through the summer, and the shrub remains healthy as can be; and the flowers are even fragrant!
HOPE FOR HUMANITY
Canadian-bred Shrub rose, 5-6’ high and 4-5’ wide. Cold-hardy to Zone 3.
Aside from the inspiring name, this is a great and unique rose, with a color unmatched in hardy roses – deep blood red opening to rich, unfading crimson. The loosely double flowers are held in large terminal clusters on arching canes, and blooming repeats through the season. Alas, there’s not much fragrance, but Hope for Humanity is very resistant to disease and easy to grow. It was bred in Canada and released in 1984.
Canadian-bred Shrub/Climber, 8-10’ high and 3-4’ wide as a climber. Cold-hardy to Zone 3.
Brilliant orchid-pink semi-double blossoms almost cover this fast-growing, easy-going shrub or climber, making quite a show! The first climbing rose in Ag. Canada’s Explorer Series, John Cabot was bred by Dr. Felicitas Svejda and introduced in 1977. With excellent hardiness, vigor, disease-resistance, repeat bloom, and even some shade tolerance, John Cabot is hard to beat, especially as a climber. Grown on an arbor or spread out along a fence, it can be quite a bit wider than 4’. Canes are thick, sturdy and upright, and prickly. One must take the thorns with the roses, right?