April 02, 2012

The Roses at Louis Armstrong Park

When you think of New Orleans, do images of antique Roses come to mind?


They didn’t for me until I saw them about a week ago. I’m just getting back after a wonderful week in the Crescent City—my first trip there. Our visit included the traditional New Orleans activities—a cable car ride, a walk down Bourbon Street, jambalaya and beignets, and a tour of the Garden District.

But one of my favorite mornings was spent just beyond the northwest border of the French Quarter—viewing the Roses at Louis Armstrong Park.


It was nearly empty that day, which makes me think it’s a little-known jewel that any gardener would enjoy—especially Rosarians and people who are crazy about Roses. Actually, the park doesn’t look like much when you enter the gate. But then you notice the pretty fountain, and some statues—a likeness of jazz legend Louis Armstrong and a marker depicting the historically significant Congo Square.



And when you look closer, you find about 85 varieties of Roses. I’m thinking in a normal year, late March is probably the best time to see them in all their glory. Some were a little dried out and past their prime during our visit, since the temperatures in New Orleans have been warmer than normal. But others were spectacular.

It was a bit of a challenge to match up the names with the photos after the fact, but I think I have these identified correctly based on the markers. Among my favorites:

'Madame Lombard'

'Thomasville Old Gold'

Unmarked Noisette Rose

'Gartendirektor Otto Linne'

'Spice'

'Carnation'

'Madame Wagram'

'Robin Hood'

'Duchesse de Brabant'

'Serratipetala'

If you’re ever in New Orleans, make sure you save time for a visit to this beautiful park. Admission is free. And if you catch them in bloom, the Roses won’t disappoint.

25 comments:

  1. Beth so glad you had a great time away and what a special find...a rose garden...love the gorgeous blooms!!

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    1. Thanks, Donna! I was like a kid in a candy shop at the Rose garden, among other green and growing New Orleans destinations. Great trip if you've never been there!

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  2. What a great job that would be--taking care of that rose garden.

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    1. I was thinking the same thing, Mary! Some of the Roses were quite fragrant, too!

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  3. How beautiful! Thanks for letting us know about this jewel! I have never heard of this park, but now it's on my wish list to visit.

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    1. Thanks, Holley! I think you and other Rosarians would find it especially appealing and interesting. I would have listed more information about each Rose, but that would take up a lot of space! If you want more info on any of these, let me know and I'll dig through my notes.

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  4. These are beautiful, Beth! I'm not much of a rose gardener myself because of my lack of patience, but I love visiting rose gardens. I was in New Orleans about 10 years ago for the Sugar Bowl and visited a few landmarks, including Bourbon Street--not the place for a lady of a certain age to be on New Year's Eve:) But there are so many places I missed, I'd love to go back. This park will go on my must-see list!

    By the way, I love your header photo!

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    1. Thanks, Rose! I am in awe of Rosarians. I have a few Rose plants, but I don't like to use systemics which makes Rose gardening a little trickier. I never thought I'd say this, but I can't wait to get back to New Orleans--I loved it! The NO Botanical Garden is incredible. I hope to do a post on it, too. :) The Bleeding Heart photo is from a few years ago, although they're starting to bloom here now, too.

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  5. Wow, they're all so pretty. I kept thinking "that's my favorite" then I'd scroll to the next and think the same thing! I'm glad you had a good time in NO. Don't be too jealous of our longer growing season...I'm jealous of your lush, verdant landscape in the heat of the summer when all we can muster is a few heat hardy blooms! Oh, and don't forget your killer fall color!

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    1. I know--me too (favorites)! And I only included a few varieties. Some of the other Roses were spectacular, too, but I couldn't post all of them. Thanks for reminding me about our great summers and autumns. Actually, this spring has been great, too. Still, it must be nice to have live plants growing in your garden year-round. :)

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  6. I am in Chicago but my daughter did her undergrad in New Orleans and lived there for 7 years until she was cast out by Katrina. I had come to love that city and I always came home chanting "must have Caladium...must have Lantana" and I still do my spinning hanging fern on one corner every summer ala Bourbon St.

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    1. Oh, I know! The Lantanas were growing like weeds everywhere, and the Caladiums were huge already. I guess maybe they never go dormant? I'm seriously considering NOLA as a 2nd home/snowbird destination when I retire (many years from now, unfortunately). I didn't realize I would like it so much!

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  7. Really wonderful roses at the Louis Armstrong Park!

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    1. Yes, Dona! If you ever visit New Orleans, there are so many activities I can recommend. The gardens are incredible!

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  8. It seems as if you found rose heaven. The varieties you feature are lovely with bold and muted colors. Sometimes it is nice when not a lot of people are at these types of places. I feel as if I have the place to myself.

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    1. Yes, they have quite a nice collection. And it's true--we nearly had the park to ourselves at mid-morning! Maybe it's busier on the weekend.

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  9. My, my ... how wonderful ... a great trip for sure, Beth, and stunning rose images/offerings! Vacations feed the soul and your post is heart warming. Thanks for sharing, fun friend.

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    1. Thanks, Joey. We really must get together one of these days. A Midwestern garden blogger event would be fun. I'm glad you had a great vacation, too!

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  10. Hi Beth, I was in New Orleans around this time last year, what a great time to visit! It's not so hot like during the summer. I didn't get to visit the roses garden, how beautiful!! The thing that stood out to me the most when I've been there are all of the balconies loaded with plants. I love that!

    Amy

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    1. Yes, the balconies with hanging baskets are beautiful, too. And the botanical garden is amazing! NOLA is a great late winter/early spring destination for Midwesterners. Stay tuned for more posts about it!

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  11. Sigh....I love roses, I can't get enough of them. Your photos are lovely! That 'Serratipetala' looks very unusual, like the look and colour.

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    1. I agree, Helene. I'm not an expert at all about Roses, but I do enjoy them. It's a special treat to spend time simply viewing and photographing them. :)

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  12. I spent a summer in New Orleans and roses do bring back fond memories. Pretty macro images of the roses.

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    1. Thank, Donna. I loved New Orleans! The Roses were an unexpected treasure. I can't wait to go back!

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  13. Wow! Really great pictures! I adore roses and this is what the doctor ordered for my day to become brighter! Thank you for the great blog post!

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