(BRIDGEWATER, NJ) – The Somerset County Park Commission has proudly announced that the Rudolf W. van der Goot Rose Garden at Colonial Park in Somerset, New Jersey is the recipient of the 2015 World Federation of Rose Societies’ (WFRS) Garden of Excellence Award. Submitted to the WFRS headquarters in Australia with other submissions from throughout the world, the nomination was initiated by a member of the Jersey Shore Rose Society in July of 2014. Members of the American Rose Society and Master Rosarians toured, photographed, and critiqued the garden, judging its qualifying characteristics.
According to the WFRS web site, “There are many wonderful rose gardens around the world, but some are truly exceptional from a historical, educational and/or visual point of view.” Beginning in 1995, the WFRS organization has recognized the best of the outstanding rose gardens throughout the world with its Garden of Excellence Award. Colonial Park Gardens Horticulture Supervisor Mark Inzano said “Our staff Rosarian Shauna Moore and I were extremely excited to be nominated for this award. We are ecstatic that the Rudolf W. van der Goot Rose Garden has won! It is a great achievement, not only for the garden, but also gives much deserved recognition to the hard work and dedication of the entire Horticulture Department staff.”
The highly competitive and prestigious award has been earned by internationally renowned gardens including La Roseraie de Bagatelle in France, the Garden of Roses in England, and Washington Park in Portland, Oregon along with gardens in Argentina, China, Italy, Pakistan, South Africa, and other countries throughout the world. Jolene Adams, President of the American Rose Society, was in Lyon, France to accept the award on behalf of the Somerset County Park Commission. The Rudolf W. van der Goot Rose Garden is one acre in size and contains more than 3,000 roses of 325 varieties. The garden was named in honor of Rudolf W. van der Goot, the first horticulturist with the Somerset County Park Commission, as a tribute to his efforts in designing and developing the garden. The Rose Garden is located on Mettlers Road (Parking Lot A and F) in the East Millstone section of Franklin Township’s Colonial Park.
From late spring through fall, the roses present a kaleidoscope of color, form, and fragrance. Visitors can view popular modern hybrids, species, and various classes of Old Garden Roses. All roses are clearly labeled for easy identification and only roses that thrive in central NJ are kept in the rose collections.