This sweet rose lives up to its name.
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The Sweetheart Rose is known by many names. Over the decades since its cultivation, it's been called by its scientific name, Rosa 'Cécile Brünner', as well as 'Mademoiselle Cécile Brünner', Sweetheart Rose, Malteser Rose, and 'Mignon'. Many of its names nod to the sweetness of its appearance. The blooms produced by this shrub are small, delicate, and fragrant light pink flowers that appear in double forms on deep green foliage. It's a polyantha rose—one that produces small blossoms in abundant sprays—that was first cultivated in France in the late 1800s. It was bred by Marie Ducher and launched by Joseph Pernet-Ducher in 1881.

'Sweetheart Rose' is a popular rose for cutting gardens. Its blooms appear in large sprays of pointed buds that give off a sweet, honeyed fragrance. They appear on reddish stems with dark green foliage that also has a reddish tint. The roses bloom from late spring to early fall and have high centers not unlike Hybrid Tea forms. The rose itself began as a shrub form with few thorns. The original iteration of the plant grew to a bush of 4 feet tall, but later, in the 1890s, the climbing form, 'Climbing Cécile Brünner', or 'Cécile Brünner Cl.' was popularized. It's a strong climber that can still be found growing widely today. The plant has a rounded, spreading habit that can be trained to climb up trellises, walls, and fences, and with enough time, it can also create a thick, blooming canopy with the aid of a support.

Rose
Credit: Maria Mosolova/Getty Images

To grow 'Sweetheart Rose', optimal conditions include partial shade with direct sunlight for only a short time each day. Once established, it is a long-lived rose and can tolerate even poor soil. However, it thrives in well-drained soil amended with organic matter. It requires some maintenance, including pruning when appropriate. Put your time and effort into tending these roses in your garden, and they'll treat you with gorgeous blooms for years to come.

What's your favorite type of rose to grow in your garden? Have you ever grown Rosa 'Cécile Brünner'?