In preparation for a presentation at the Sacramento County Master Gardener Fall Symposium in October 2007, Lance Walheim, author of "Roses for Dummies",  asked local rosarians to choose their favorite roses.
    Here is his compilation of the top ten roses for the Central Valley area (and Sacramento in particular), along with comments from the participating rosarians:
"Sally Holmes". This white flowered is a shrubby climber...or a climbing shrub, with masses of flowers that look great along a fence line.
"Moonstone". A hybrid tea rose featuring white petals with pink edges. Huge blooms for both garden display and as a cut flower.
"Gemini". Pink blend hybrid tea rose. A fragrant, disease resistant rose with gorgeous coral and white blooms.
"Secret". A hybrid tea rose that is a great cut flower and smells wonderful. "Secret" combines form, fragrance and quick repeating pink blend blooms.
"Grand Prize". This floribunda rose features a creamy white flower with a hint of pink and yellow. Makes a great border hedge.
“St. Patrick". True to the implication of its Irish name, this hybrid tea rose blooms with yellow-green colored flowers.
“Day Breaker". A short, floribunda bush-type rose, it is covered with unique peachy-yellow-orange flowers during our long growing season.
“Let Freedom Ring". A tall hybrid tea rose with long-stemmed, fragrant pinkish-red blossoms.
“Veterans Honor". Gorgeous red blooms on this hybrid tea rose. Long lasting flowers, both on the bush or in a vase.
“Playboy". A reddish blend floribunda rose. Shiny foliage. The red blend blooms start off as yellow in the cooler weather, becoming more reddish-yellow with the heat of summer.
Other roses to look for now that placed high among local rosarians' recommendations included "Abraham Darby", "Berries 'n' Cream", "Lavaglut", "Crimson Bouquet", "Iceberg", "White Meidiland", "Flower Girl", "Black Magic", "Fourth of July" and "Altissimo".
Listen to "Farmer Fred" Hoffman on The KFBK Garden Show on Newstalk 1530/KFBK Sundays, 8:30-10 a.m.; and, Get Growing also on Sundays, 10 a.m.-Noon, on Talk650/KSTE.
More garden tips at the website: