Heritage rose lights up Kwinana

Heritage rose lights up Kwinana
31 January 2023

A flaming red rose, named ‘Kwinana’ during the mid-twentieth century excitement about the opening of the bp Refinery, will be planted across the City at key sites.

A heritage rose named ‘Kwinana’ in the 1960s and grown in NSW will now be planted at various sites across the City of Kwinana.

Mayor Carol Adams said the ‘Kwinana rose’ was bred by Frank Reithmuller in Turramurra, New South Wales in 1962. 

“With beautiful petals in various shades of pink and red, it is said to have been named for the flare of the bp Refinery,” Mayor Adams said.

“Surprisingly, there were also at least 29 varieties of flowers named after Kwinana, including a daffodil, dahlias, and a rose.

“While most of these varieties are no longer available, the City has now obtained ten Kwinana rose bushes.”

“Even old jigsaw puzzles and postcards featured Kwinana, such was the popularity at the time of the growing town.”

Reithmuller was one of the leading rose breeders in Australia, and his varieties feature in a number of heritage rose gardens.

The budwood for the City of Kwinana’s roses was sourced from a plant collector in Banjup. 

The roses were then propagated and carefully nurtured for the past year for the City by Rudi and Vivienne Etter from the Swiss Rose Garden Nursery in Haynes. 

Kwinana roses will be planted at the City’s administration building, and have also been gifted to Koorliny Arts Centre, the Kwinana Heritage Group at Smirks Cottage, and the Museum of Perth at Sloan’s Cottage. 

“It is believed that this will be the first time the variety has been grown in our city,” Mayor Adams said.

The bp Kwinana refinery was established in 1955 and operated as a fuel refinery until early 2021 when it was converted to an import terminal.

Federal Government funding was announced in April last year for a green hydrogen hub at the bp Kwinana site, where bp also plans to build a biorefinery for renewable fuel production.


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