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Products > Rosa 'Mutabilis'
 
Rosa 'Mutabilis' - Butterfly Rose
  

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Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Shrub
Family: Rosaceae (Roses)
Origin: China (Asia)
Evergreen: Yes
Bloomtime: Year-round
Synonyms: [Rosa chinensis 'Mutabilis']
Height: 6-8 feet
Width: 6-8 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: <15 F
Rosa 'Mutabilis' (Butterfly Rose) - A vigorous rose with single petaled flowers that open sulfur yellow, changing through orange to a rich pink and finally crimson. Bright, silky flowers of all these colors will often be on display at the same time, looking as if a group of multi-colored butterflies has settled on the bush. This aspect earned 'Mutabilis' its common name "The Butterfly Rose". A healthy, well-branched shrub, 'Mutabilis' will easily grow to 6 feet, making a fine specimen plant whose showy flowers are accented by the bronze color of the new growth. Although the true origins of this plant have been lost it was originally sold under the fitting name of 'Tipo Ideale'. This rose made its horticultural debut in 1934 when the Swiss botanist Henri Correan introduced it, having obtained it from the Italian Prince Ghilberto Borromeo. It is unknown whether the plant originated in China or was a hybrid created in the prince's garden in Isola Bella. 'Mutabilis' beautifully exhibits the characteristic China rose trait of the flowers darkening with age, instead of fading. In 'Mutabilis', the tight orange buds open to reveal single petaled flowers that are soft yellow on the inside and orange on the reverse. As the flowers age they first darken to orange then to pink and finally to a coppery rose red. All of these colors will be on display on the plant which to some looks like a group of butterflies nestled on the plant and hence the common name Butterfly Rose. A well branching shrub with attractive bronzy new growth that can reach 6 feet or more and is in flower in Santa Barbara 12 months of the year. Plant in a sheltered location. Our large shrub along the side of our main office gets only half day sun and is a delight to those visiting the nursery at any time of year. Winner of the Royal Horticultural Society Award of Garden Merit in 1993. Hardy to zones 5-10.  This description is based on our research and observations of this plant as it grows in containers at our nursery, in our own garden and in other gardens. We also appreciate receiving feedback of any kind from those who have additional information about this plant, particularly if they disagree with what we have written or have additional cultural tips that would aid others growing Rosa 'Mutabilis' .
 
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