Reiman receives rose award

Megan Erickson

The best rose gardens in the country are within walking distance for most ISU students.

Reiman Gardens was selected by the All-America Rose Selections to receive the President’s Award for the finest rose garden in the country.

Heidi Mitchell, communications director for All-America Rose Selections, said Reiman Gardens was selected because of its outstanding quality.

“There are certain criteria each garden needs to meet, and [Reiman Gardens] supersede anything that is asked of them,” she said.

Mitchell said the All-America Rose Selections, which donates test plants of new rose varieties to public gardens across the United States, was proud to have Reiman as one of their gardens. She said the roses showcased in Reiman Gardens give consumers and garden lovers an opportunity to see what is available to them.

Reiman was one of more than 130 public gardens taking part in this national competition, said Teresa McLaughlin, director of Reiman Gardens.

“To get this national recognition is very significant,” she said.

All-America Rose Selections is a not-for-profit organization that works with rose promotion and research. The group has been testing roses since 1938. The roses are judged on many different qualities such as stem, fragrance, vigor, growth habit, flower and bud form, disease resistance, foliage, flower production, color, and overall value, McLaughlin said.

The volunteers and students who work at the garden are the forces behind its success, she said.

The staff travels extensively to view other gardens, McLaughlin said.

“We have been able to learn a lot and display some of the new material but with a lot fewer resources than other gardens,” she said.

Nick Howell, garden superintendent, said Reiman Gardens uses a special technique to grow its roses.

“It’s kind of a new method, and that is really why we have been so successful,” he said.

Howell will accept the award Sept. 23 at the American Rose Society’s annual meeting in Cleveland, Ohio.