Rosa 'Kaiserin Auguste Viktoria'
'Kaiserin Auguste Viktoria' was "the 'Peace' (rose) of its time"--the must-have rose of the decade or so before World War I, just as 'Peace' was the rose of the twenty years just after World War II.
Nurserymen sold so many of 'Kaiserin Auguste Viktoria', they gave it a shortcut name--"KAV". But with the advent of WWI, anything with a German name became unpopular in Great Britain and the US, and unfortunately, KAV faded from sight.
There is a climbing sport, and unlike most climbing sports of modern roses, this one has regular and good re-bloom. The climbing canes are about 12-15 feet long (3.5 to 4.5 meters), flexible, and with only a moderate number of prickles.
In a dry climate, this is an excellent performer, with decent rust resistance, no mildew, and a sweet old rose fragrance. The blooms nod, so as it grows over a pergola, they shine down at you. It has the character of a Tea rather than a Hybrid Tea rose. It won't knock you over the head with a huge bold flower--the petals are thin and delicate, and the barely 3 inch flowers nod. It's a delicate, graceful rose more appropriate for a less "in-your-face" era. It's a lady.
The introduction of 'Peace' was delayed by World War II, and it appeared just after the end of the war. It was a clear innovation in rose breeding, a break from the thirties and from the war. A brand rose for a brand new world. A fresh color on sturdy, straight stems. A little bold. Millions were planted in the new suburbs of America, by people who now had the time and money to garden.
The 'Peace' rose of our era is 'Knock Out'. The color is bright, the bloom is continuous, black spot resistance is excellent, and the plant is tough as 'Doc Marten' boots. It's a rose that needs less care and attention than a 'Peace' or a 'Kaiserin Auguste Viktoria'. There's not a lot of time to dawdle in the garden these days, and so many many many things to pay attention to. Even a rose must be aggressive to catch what fleeting attention it can in the blare of the early 21st century.
Isn't it amazing how clearly roses reflect their eras?
In the garden, springtime is in full swing: