The author wonders what happened to her beautiful pink Queen Elizabeth roses
More than twenty years ago, my husband and I were looking around a garden center when we came across a pair of beautiful pink rose bushes. The tag said they were Queen Elizabeth roses. Not being horticulturists, we only knew what we liked, and we liked those roses and we bought them.
We were renting at the time, and so, we kept them in their pots. Oh, how they brightened our small patio! After my husband received his masters degree, we moved. Still, however, we were renting, so the roses remained in their pots. Still, they were as beautiful as ever.
That winter, the area suffered what they called a hundred-year ice storm. That is, the temperatures dipped so low that the rain that fell turned to sheets of ice. Power lines came down, and trees snapped off. From all appearances, our roses seemed to have made it through just fine.
That spring, we bought a house of our own and planted our roses. To our surprise, when they flowered that summer, the blooms were no longer pink. Instead, they were red! Yes, red!
We can only imagine that the Queen Elizabeth is a grafted rose and that, while the main plant survived the ice storm, the graft did not. Perhaps, someone has knowledge about this that would either confirm our hypothesis or tell us what really happened to our beautiful Queen Elizabeth roses.