Rosa Iceberg

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Rosa Iceberg
Rosa Iceberg 1.jpg
Hybrid parentage Rosa hybrid
'Robin Hood' x 'Virgo'
Cultivar Iceberg
Origin Bred by W. Kordes & Sons, Germany, 1958.

Iceberg is a floribunda rose cultivar that was bred in Germany in 1958. It is also known by the names 'Korbin' (the registered cultivar name), Fée des Neiges and Schneewittchen.[1] It is among the world's best known roses.[2]


Iceberg is a modern cluster-flowered floribunda rose cultivar.[3] The cultivar is commercially available in two main forms. These are as a tall bush and a standard rose produced by grafting.[4] Weeping and climbing forms are also available.[5] Shrub forms of the cultivar have an upright habit and are 75 to 150 cm wide high and 60 cm wide. Leaves are light green and glossy.[1] Blooms are about 5 cm in diameter and have 25 to 35 petals. Buds are long and pointed. The fragrant flowers usually appear throughout the year.[4]


The cultivar was developed by prolific German rose breeder Reimer Kordes in Germany in 1958. He and his father Wilhelm had initially specialised in developing bush roses that were suitable for small gardens.[2] The parent varieties of Iceberg are 'Robin Hood', a red hybrid musk rose, developed by Joseph Pemberton in 1927 in England, and 'Virgo', a white hybrid-tea rose bred in France by Charles Mallerin in 1927.[1][6]

The plant was registered under the cultivar name 'KORbin' by Kordes in 1958 and given the trade name Schneewittchen.[1] The cultivar is known as Fée des Neiges in French and Iceberg in English.[1]

Awards and recognition[edit]

'Iceberg' depicted on a 1970 Romanian stamp

In 1958 Iceberg was awarded a Royal National Rose Society Gold Medal.[7] The cultivar was selected as the "World Favourite Rose" of 1983 by the World Federation of Rose Societies and is listed in their "Rose Hall of Fame".[8]

Stamps depicting the cultivar were issued in Romania in 1970 and New Zealand in 1975.[9]

Related cultivars[edit]

A number of sports of Iceberg have been developed:

  • 'Blushing Pink Iceberg' - A cultivar originating from Lilia Weatherly's garden in Tasmania in 1994 with white flowers flushed with pale pink.
  • 'Brilliant Pink Iceberg' - a deep pink form from the same garden in Tasmania
  • 'Burgundy Iceberg' - a sport of 'Brilliant Pink Iceberg' with prolific burgundy flowers.
  • 'Climbing Iceberg'- a climbing form developed by Cants of Colchester in England in 1968.[4][5][10]

Because of its positive qualities, Iceberg was an important parent of the English Roses bred by David Austin and others: 1983 – 'Graham Thomas' and 'Perdita'; 1984 – 'Belle Story', 'Dove' and 'Heritage'; 1985 – 'Emanuel'; 1986 – 'Claire Rose', 'English Garden' and 'Swan'.


Although plants are generally disease free, they may suffer from black spot in more humid climates or in situations where air circulation is limited.[5] Plants tolerate shade, though they perform best in full sun. In North America they are able to be grown in USDA Hardiness Zones 4b and higher.[1] In Australia, plants are suited to all but northern tropical areas.[4] The hardiness and popularity of the cultivar have seen its widespread use in cultivation across the world, occasionally leading to claims that it is "overdone" as a garden plant.[6]

The blooms are suited for use as cut flowers.[1] Both the shrub form and grafted standard may be grown in large containers.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "'Iceberg' rose description". HelpMeFind. Retrieved 14 July 2011. 
  2. ^ a b Quest-Ritson, Charles (2003). "Climbing roses of the world". Portland, Oregon: Timber Press. p. 195. ISBN 978-0-88192-563-0. 
  3. ^ Turner, R.G.; Wasson, Ernie (2004). "Botanica : the illustrated encyclopedia of over 10,000 garden plants and how to cultivate them". New York: Barnes & Noble. p. 791. ISBN 978-0-7607-5973-8. 
  4. ^ a b c d Burke, Don (2005). "The Complete Burke's Backyard: The Ultimate Book of Fact Sheets". Millers Point, New South Wales: Murdoch Books. p. 294. ISBN 978-1-74045-739-2. 
  5. ^ a b c d Moody, Mary (2006). "Mary Moody's roses : more than 200 of the world's most beautiful and hardy roses". Murdoch Books. p. 92. ISBN 978-1-74045-856-6. 
  6. ^ a b Rupert, Kim L. "Poor Old Iceberg". HelpMeFind. Retrieved 14 July 2011. 
  7. ^ Tenenbaum, Frances (1999). "Taylor's 50 Best Roses: Easy Plants for More Beautiful Gardens". Boston, Massachusetts: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 92. ISBN 978-0-395-87334-2. 
  8. ^ "Rose Hall Of Fame". World Federation of Rose Societies. Retrieved 14 July 2011. 
  9. ^ "Rose Definitives". Historical stamp issues. New Zealand Post. Retrieved 25 November 2011. 
  10. ^ "Specialized Conservation Committee WFRS Locator - Cultivar Search". World Federation of Rose Societies. Retrieved 14 July 2011. 

External links[edit]