Ramblers are the first roses that I remember falling head-over-heels in love with. It's not a class for the faint of heart, because many of them can easily put out canes that grow ten to twelve feet or more in a single season.
Anyone who loves and collects Ramblers* will eventually cross paths with Anne Belovich. She loves Ramblers, too, and has been collecting and growing them for decades ... she has what is thought to be the largest private collection of Ramblers in the world. I have corresponded with Anne for a few years, exchanging cuttings and plants, and I met her in person at an event in Texas two years ago. During our conversation, Anne told me that she was in the process of writing a book on Ramblers. That book was released last month. My copy arrived in the mail a few days ago.
Last year, Anne contacted me to ask if I would send her photos of "Pink Van Fleet", a rose I grow that she and I think may be the true 'Bess Lovett', which is lost in the US. I was honored that she asked, and thrilled that one of my photos is in her book.
I am most surprised that, in addition to photo credit in the back of the book, I was mentioned among some very big names in the acknowledgements at the beginning of the book.
I have only had time to thumb quickly through Ramblers. All roses in it are presented in alphabetical order, for easy use as a reference. I can already see that this book will get a LOT of use as an important addition to my rose library ... and it stands as a reminder of a mentor who made a big impression on me and on my garden.
* A Rambler, as I know it, is defined as a large, once-blooming climbing rose. The American Rose Society no longer recognizes Ramblers as a distinct class of rose. Ramblers were recently reclassified and split into separate classes based on their genetics. No matter what their new classifications, they will always be Ramblers to me.
Click HERE to order Ramblers for your own rose library.