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Sonoran International Rose Trials at Mesa Community College

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The rose garden is visible as people pass the Mesa Community College campus on Southern Avenue, just past its intersection with Dobson Road, at 1833 W. Southern Ave. (Sally Mesarosh/Special to MyNewsMesa.com)

The Rose Garden at Mesa Community College (MCC), the largest rose garden in the desert Southwest, is one of only two locations in the United States selected to sponsor an international rose trial.

(Courtesy of MCC)

“We are pleased The Rose Garden at Mesa Community College will be the site of the Sonoran International Rose Trials,” said Jared Langkilde, MCC executive director of development. “For nearly 20 years, with the support of the long-standing partnership of the Mesa-East Valley Rose Society and countless volunteers and generous contributors, the garden has grown into the landmark and destination it is today, a site proudly hosting an international rose trial.”

The Sonoran International Rose Trials will display, in a park setting and for the benefit of parks departments, nurserymen and the general public, the value of modern rose varieties as free blooming, leafy, healthy and beautiful flowering plants.

The planting of test roses at MCC took place in January, initiating the beginning of a two-year trial period. The unique climatic conditions in Arizona permit planting in late December to early January with the first blooms appearing in early April. Five to six complete bloom cycles may be observed annually.

Trial roses will be judged, for qualities such as health, floriferousness, novelty and scent, by three separate panels, a permanent judging panel, an international jury and the general public.

  1. The permanent judging panel consisting of not fewer than 10 judges serving throughout the two-year period are appointed by garden curators to represent a wide spectrum of rose knowledge and experience.
  2. The international jury shall consist of selected individuals from the world of roses invited by the college to participate in the judging at the end of the two-year trial. The composition of the jury will reflect an international flavor, e.g. growers, breeders, parks departments, landscape architects and members of rose organizations at home and abroad.
  3. During the final year the general public will be invited to participate in the selection of a special award, “The Peoples’ Choice Award.”

The trials permit both named varieties registered within the last five years and as yet not named under their seedling designation. The 26 trails plants in the MCC Rose Garden are from two main introducers representing five hybridizers.

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