RoseFile Database

Nicole - Floribunda Rose


Floribunda. Bred by Kordes in Germany in 1985.
Bed, Border
White/Pink Blend
Good Continuity
Bloom Size:
Modest (2-4 in)
Cold Hardiness:
Zone 5 - 9
Height & Width:
4 ft x 3 ft

Comments By all accounts Nicole is a vigorous rose that blossoms indefatigueably. It has white petals emargined with rosy pink or cerise. And owing to its great vigor, it shrugs off fungal disease. Its fine health qualities have won the hearts of many gardeners, and its fine exhibition qualities have won prizes for many exhibitors of this rose. This is the official story everywhere. ARS members give Nicole a stellar 8.9.

BTW: I have grown Nicole in my zone 6 garden in NJ. To its credit, it did not die of blackspot or drought, placing it in the top ten percent of modern roses. But neither did it bloom; not in the four or five years before I finally shovel pruned it to make room for asclepias. I have grown Nicole in my zone 7 garden in AZ where, ironcally, it gets more water. In four full seasons the plant hss reached nine inches in height and this year it produced two flowers, bringing its total flower production in four years to two.

But is my rose the real Nicole? For some time three different cultivars have been marketed under the moniker Nicole: Hannah Gordon, Tabris, and the original Nicole. They are related through at least one common parent, Bordure Rose; and they share a common description of pink-edged white flowers on a vigorous and disease-resistant plant. There is disagreement among experts about whether careful examination of the flowers can accurately allow one to distinguish one from another. As a consequence, the practice of selling different cultivars under the same registration name created much confusinon and a great hullabaloo arose among rose exhibitors. Judges would disqualify from competitions roses displayed under the name Nicole - the name under which the exhibitor bought the rose - claiming that they were imposters. At one point not long ago Nicole was removed from the ARS Handbook for Selecting Roses. Rose catalogues started listing Tabris or Hannah Gordon instead.