Award-winning hybridizer is one of the nation’s leading rose experts
Photo by Gene Sasse
MARINO, Calif.—Award-winning rose hybridizer Tom Carruth, 59, has been
named the E. L. and Ruth B. Shannon Curator of the Rose Collection at
The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. He
replaces rosarian Clair Martin, who retired last July after 28 years in
the position. Carruth joined the staff on Feb. 8.
Well known in the horticultural community, Carruth was director of research, marketing, and licensing at Weeks Roses
in Wasco and Pomona, Calif., one of the nation’s leading commercial
wholesale rose growers, where he has led the company’s hybridizing
efforts since 1988.
“Tom’s name is synonymous with roses, and I
can’t think of a better person to follow Clair as overseer of the rose
collection,” said James Folsom, the Telleen/Jorgensen Director of the
Botanical Gardens at The Huntington. “Few people could match his
expertise in the field. His knowledge and passion for roses will be an
asset not only to the garden itself but to educational efforts
benefitting visitors, docents, and Southern California gardeners.”
Carruth will be responsible for The Huntington’s three-acre Rose Garden,
which showcases more than 1,200 cultivars and some 4,000 individual
shrubs. Established in 1908, the historic landscape is among the most
beautiful areas of the grounds, frequently cited by visitors as a
favorite Huntington attraction.
During his long career as a
rosarian, Carruth has introduced more than 100 rose hybrids, among them
such notable blooms as ‘Ebb Tide,’ the development of which represented a
true color breakthrough for its stable, deep purple tones. He has won
numerous national and international awards, including, most recently,
the American Horticultural Society’s Luther Burbank Award for
outstanding plant breeding.
Recognition by All-America Rose
Selections (AARS) is the gold standard for roses, and Carruth is
credited with creating more All-America roses than any other living
hybridizer—11 in the past 14 years. AARS is a nonprofit association
dedicated to the introduction and promotion of exceptional roses. Among
Carruth’s AARS winners developed for Weeks are ‘Julia Child,’
‘Scentimental,’ ‘Cinco de Mayo,’ ‘Hot Cocoa,’ ‘Wild Blue Yonder,’
‘Strike it Rich,’ and ‘Betty Boop.’
A native of Pampa, Texas,
Carruth received a Bachelor’s degree in horticulture and a Master’s
degree in plant breeding from Texas A & M University. He has worked
in the California rose industry since 1975 and is a frequent public
Contact: Lisa Blackburn, 626-405-2140, firstname.lastname@example.org
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About The Huntington
The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens is a collections-based research
and educational institution serving scholars and the general public. More information about
The Huntington can be found online at www.huntington.org.
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