Comparison of Kenyan yellow roses

Similar to Springtime, Yellow Roses have always been linked to the sunshine, the promise of new beginings in life and the delights and joys that come with all of it. Though not as celebrated as the reds, whites and oranges; which are more common and very much enjoy relevance all year round, yellow roses remain the best option for many while sending messages of appreciation, consolation, or during the merriments that come with Easter Holidays.For a good number of years, Kenya has been known to produce very good yellow rose varieties; some of which have enjoyed popularity spanning a decade and beyond, and others that are new entrants into the market. In the spirit of the good old Easter Holidays, let us compare some of these yellow roses.
A worker at Timaflor Roses in Timau with the variety Viva! from Schreurs East Africa.
Jagtap, the GM at Bigot Flowers with Top Sun by Schreurs

To determine which African yellow roses truly stood out from the rest, we recently sought the opinions of several Kenyan based rose growers and breeders. Jan Ruhe who is a veteran in the industry and currently in charge of Business Develoment at VegPro, pointed out Interplant’s yellow rose ‘Moonwalker’ as the best in terms of strength of colour. He was however quick to point out that the variety ‘Good Times’ from Kordes perfomed better in production although both grew large enough buds at high altitude. He also mentioned Penny Lane from Olij Roses, Sonrisa from De Ruiter and Viva from Schreurs as top quality roses.

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Jagtap KT, the GM at Bigot Flowers spoke to us about the rose ‘Top Sun’ from Schreurs East Africa. He described the rose as a bright yellow, with very good production and that it perfoms very well in the retail market.

The farm which is located in Naivasha has grown the variety Top Sun! since 2006 with Jagtap having participated in the rose’s propagation three years prior. Top Sun is available from Bigot as a supermarket product in Germany, UK and France. Clement Ngetich, GM at Agriflora Kenya which operates under Sian Roses has had experience growing ‘Good Times’, a yellow rose from breeder Kordes. He acknowledges that the variety works well for them giving them stems of up to 80cm long and vaselife of up to 14 days.Simon van der Burg the MD at Timaflor Flowers who is a grower of Schreurs’ yellow variety ‘Viva’,  says the variety has good production and enjoys good presence in the market. At an altitude of 2400m, Timaflor gets an average 5cm headsize and a stemlength of 50cm and above for the rose Viva.
A team from VegPro Group, including floriculture expert Jan Ruhe (3rd left) join Edward of De Ruiter during a recent open house at the breeder’s
Rose New Moon: Olij team including L-R: Vijay (Farm Manager Olij EA), Philippe (GM Olij Breeding) and Sally (Sales Manager Olij EA)
Gavin of Interplant with the rose Moonwalk. The rose is a good producer with a range of 180-190 in Naivasha’s 1,950m asl altitude
Fully opened rose ‘Tara+, a vibrant yellow variety by Lex East Africa.
Tara is a nicely shaped rose by breeder Lex+ East Africa; she currently enjoys a lot of popularity in South America and has attracted a good number of Kenya growers. Lex East Africa GM Peter Mwangi says Tara+ grows a headsize of above 5cm average in high altitude and has good stemlenghth.New Moon
Traders and florists will find this new T-hybrid rose appealing mostly because of its vibrant yellow colour. New Moon is a healthy grower and versatile too since it does well at both low and high altitude farms.