Harkness Roses has joined forces with the We Too Built Britain campaign to create what we believe might be the first ever rose to be launched that is named after an ethnic minority Briton – The John Ystumllyn Rose.
John Ystumllyn was an 18th century gardener who was the first well-recorded black person in North Wales and with his marriage to Margaret Gruffydd, part of the first interracial marriage in Wales.
We wanted to breed a new rose as a symbol of friendship, love and community and to bring people together after the divisiveness of recent years. We also wanted to inspire people from all backgrounds to see gardening as a career or activity for them.
The John Ystumllyn Rose colour is uncomplicated, a refreshing yellow which hardly fades at all. The plant is good looking, bushy with even growth that is densely covered with glossy dark green leaves. Starting to flower, early the buds open into double old fashioned style blooms, up to 12cm wide, they sit proudly above the dark leaf. With a long flowering season, this is a valuable plant in the garden. Use in beds, borders or low hedges.