|Authors: ||G. Hammond, D.C. Zlesak, M. Schwartz, P. Kukielski, S. George, M. Chamblee, R. Nelson, K. Zuzek, K. McLean, D. Freedman, R. Fink|
|Keywords: ||plant evaluation, Rosa spp|
There are numerous rose trialing programs worldwide that evaluate new roses in the marketplace and they differ in number of sites and climatic conditions represented, level of scientific rigor employed, the evaluation criteria used, maintenance of roses, determination of awards, and the transparency with which the programs are organized and supported.
Here we present an overview of the American Rose Trials for Sustainability® (ARTS®). ARTS® is a new rose trialing program initiated in 2012 in the United States by experts representing universities, rose nurseries, public gardens, and rose societies with the shared goal of identifying and promoting strong performing roses evaluated under low-input conditions.
The ARTS® trials are managed by university scientists with years of experience in field research.
The ARTS® leadership team consulted a wide range of stakeholders to ascertain which rose characteristics were most important and developed a new evaluation protocol in response.
As with other ornamental plant evaluation programs, attractive floral attributes and flowering throughout the season are highly valued (42.5% of score). Also of great importance are foliar health and quality (45%) and growth habit (12.5%). The scientific credibility and transparency of ARTS® are strengthened in multiple ways including using the Köppen climate classification system for region delineation, a randomized complete block experimental design, and a generated code for each genotype to shield identities of the cultivars and breeders from evaluators.
Awards are determined on a regional basis with those cultivars earning awards in four or more regions designated as Master Roses.
There are seven roses earning awards for 2018, the debut of the program to the public, with three roses [‘True PassionTM’ (‘LIM10’), ‘IcecapTM’ (‘MEIradena’), and ‘The Peachy Knock Out® Rose’ (‘RADgor’)] earning Master Rose designations.
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