The 2013 Penn-Jersey District Convention and Rose Show was hosted by the West Jersey Rose Society at The Hotel ML in Mount Laurel, NJ. This year’s rose show was a bit smaller than usual with some of the best exhibitors not in attendance (Mike and Sally Wrightstone, Glenn and Donna Smith, Wayne and Deb Geltz, John and Cheryl Smith, and Joe and Sue Yelinek). It was nice to see Louise Coleman show roses from New York and Pamela Powers come up to show from Virginia. I did not show roses but came early to the show to help out exhibitors in the prep room and of course for the actual rose show itself. Most importantly I came to see my rose friends and those who share a common interest of roses.
Ken Borrmann of Warminster, PA won the J. Horace McFarland DIstrict Trophy with the roses ‘Crystalline’, ‘Randy Scott’, ‘Cajun Moon’, ‘Mavrik’ and ‘Dublin’. It was the only entry in the class however this was another strong entry by Ken which was his 14th McFarland Trophy won in 15 tries. For the second straight year Ken won the J. Benjamin Williams Miniflora Trophy this year easily with ‘Whirlaway’, ‘Foolish Pleasure’, ‘Tiffany Lynn’, ‘Shameless’, ‘Abby’s Angel’ and ‘First Choice’. Ken also won the Philadelphia Rose Society Challenge Trophy for best hybrid tea English Box, the Jack D. Lissmore Friendship Trophy for a matched pair of ‘Mavrik’ and the Pittsburgh Rose Society Challenge Trophy with a collection of ‘Affirm’, ‘Moonstone’ and ‘Randy Scott’.
Ken repeated winning the hybrid tea Queen of Show with ‘Hot Princess’ edging out Bill Hylen’s ‘Gemini’ 6 votes to 5. The ‘Hot Princess’ was more round from the top and had a stronger center with flawless stem and foliage. In comparison the ‘Gemini’ had excellent color with a nice high centered profile. Unfortunately there was some foliage damage to the ‘Gemini’. Ken also won the Princess and Prince with ‘Cajun Moon’ and ‘Dublin’, respectively. Don and Laura Wade rounded out the hybrid tea court with ‘Moonstone’. Overall the hybrid teas were not as good as we have seen in years past at the District show due to an early September show date. The highest quality District shows have always been in mid-September. It’s remarkable what having the show date only one week later does for the quality of blooms.
Ken swept the miniflora court– easily having the best quality and exhibited minifloras at the show. The roses were ‘Abby’s Angel’ (Queen), ‘Tiffany Lynn’ (King), ‘Shameless’ (Princess), ‘First Choice’ (Prince) and ‘Ghostzapper’ (Duchess). Sweeping the miniflora court and winning the Ben Williams District trophy is particularly impressive given he grows only about 25 to 30 miniatures and minifloras in total. Pamela Powers won the Miniature Queen of Show with ‘Soroptimist International’ edging out a nice ‘Joy’ by the Wades. Rafiq and Suni Bolar won the miniature Princess and Prince respectively with a colorful ‘Magic Show’ and large ‘Irresistible’ both were nice blooms. ‘Bees Knees’ shown by Georgianna Papale rounded out the miniature court.
Rafiq and Suni Bolar won the Ralph Moore District Challenge Trophy going unopposed this year, capturing the trophy for the third straight year. The roses were ‘New Hampshire’, ‘Kristin’, ‘Baby Boomer’, ‘Miss Flippins’, ‘Jilly Jewel’, ‘Pierrine’ and ‘Bees Knees’. I thought their entry last year was stronger and presented better.
Bill and Kathy Kozemchak notched yet another win of the Griffith Buck Shrub Torphy with ‘Della Balour’, ‘Ambridge Rose’ and ‘Jude The Obscure’. Tom Mayhew won the Best Polyantha with ‘Excellenz von Schubert’ and Bruce Monroe has a nice exhibit of ‘Lady Elsie May’, the Best Modern Shrub.
One of the newer members I enjoyed speaking with at the show was Judy Goss. I really appreciate her enthusiasm as a newbie and she even entered the Griffith Buck District Challenge Trophy which is not typical of a “new” exhibitor. While I did not attend the evening dinner I did hear Curtis Aumiller was awarded the Silver Model Honor for outstanding service to the Penn-Jersey District. Congratulations Curtis! Pat Shanley was the guest speaker after dinner and gave a talk entitled “A Vision of Roses….A Vision of ARS”. Overall I really enjoyed the show and the quality of blooms for an early September show. Our District has some of the nicest people you will meet and I like conversing with my fellow rose friends. Thank you West Jersey Rose Society for hosting an outstanding District Show and congratulations to ALL the exhibitors who showed roses this weekend.