Posts Tagged ‘rose garden’
I have a big variety of roses and of course I have favorites. I tend to like the pastel colors rather than the vibrant ones. The Brandy Rose is a beautiful, soft colored rose that is really pretty in all stages. When it’s fully open it is just as gorgeous as in the bud stage.
This morning I was strolling through the garden and just enjoying, when I noticed a bee nestled in one of the roses. I couldn’t rouse him and thought he might have expired. I moved on but came back and he was still there, tucked down in his beautiful bed. I ruffled him a little just to make sure he was really alive and sure enough he was. But he refused to be run off. I left him there, enjoying his rest. Curious creatures, bees.
It has been a nice, warm summer so the flowers are thriving this year.
The arbor built over the south gate a couple of years ago has finally been covered in roses this year.
All of the Clematis are finally maturing enough to really begin to put on a show. Most of them are 3 years old, some are 4 years old.
Here are some shots of the garden that include roses, clematis, hollyhocks, catmint, salvia, peonies, irises, feverfew, centranthus, lavender, daylilies, oriental lilies, snapdragons, hostas, dogwood, delphiniums, larkspur and many others. (Click on picture to enlarge)
After being inundated with a couple of feet of snow (which has been on the ground now about 2 weeks), and being house bound
because of the ice storm yesterday that left a quarter inch of solid ice on driveways, sidewalks and roads (the interstate was closed, as well as all the runways at the airport) I am SO ready for spring and summer.
It’s times like this that I’m so glad that I’ve taken lots and lots of pictures of our garden so I can, not only enjoy looking at them during the cold days of cabin fever, but to also evaluate the garden to see what’s working and what might need some tweaking.
Here are a few shots of warmer times in our garden.
This post is not for the squeamish, so be forewarned.
I’ve done things this past 2 weeks that I never, ever, thought I’d do. Actually it had never even occurred to me to do before.
Since we’ve been having such a beautiful, warm (sort of) and dry spring, I thought that we would escape the plague of the aphids that we suffered through last spring. Not so. Well, they aren’t nearly as bad as they were last year, but they are bad enough, and besides, I have a lot more roses to worry about this year.
My usual tried and true method for combating aphids is to spray them with a mixture of Ivory liquid in water, wait 10-15 minutes and hose them off really well to wash away the soap and the dead aphids.
This year the roses are maturing and setting hundreds of buds. As I worked in the garden I began to notice that some of the buds looked like they were wrapped in brown velvet. Since I was very busy and didn’t really have time to stop and mix my aphid-killer potion, then wait to rinse them off, and I didn’t want the little buggers sucking juice from the rose buds for another day or so, I just reached up (with gloves on) and started squishing the aphids. That was gross and I couldn’t believe I was doing it, but, hey, it really worked…except that the leather gloves I was wearing made it hard to do and I wound up actually pulling off some of the buds.
So, the next step was (you guessed it) to remove the gloves. I did hesitate, for about 3 seconds, and then I reasoned that I could go and scrub my hands and the aphids would be gone in a fraction of the time it would take to do the civilized method.
After doing this a few times, I realized that some were falling off (only to crawl back up later) and I needed to catch them some way. So, since the aphids were always concentrated on the bud and about an inch down the stem, I found that I could grasp lower on the stem with my left hand, keeping the bud over my palm and use my right hand to smash the aphids. I was surprised to find how many dropped off as soon as I took the stem in my left hand. It must be an instinct for their survival, which explains why there are a bazzillion of them.
Now, not only do I have to kill the ones on the bud and stem but also the ones that drop into my palm.
I know that it’s Yucky! I know that it’s Disgusting! But it works. I go on patrol each day to see if any new colonies have been established. I’ve pretty much obliterated them at this point.
The things we will do for our roses.
I was surprised that when I revealed my revolting aphid-control method to other gardeners, I found that they’d been doing it for years.
Soon it will be time to think about pruning the rose bushes.
Well, not here in zone 6, but somewhere, it is almost time.
Most roses really benefit from pruning in the early spring, just as the leaf buds begin to swell. There are a lot of reasons to prune rose bushes, so it’s well worth the effort. Some of the reasons are:
- To rejuvenate the plant and encourage new growth
- To create a better shape to the plant
- To remove dead or diseased stems
- To encourage more blooms
- To thin out the stems to allow for better air circulation
Because pruning encourages new growth, it’s best not to prune too late in the fall. The new growth would be likely to be damaged by the cold temperatures of winter. Also, by waiting until after the winter, you’ll be able to see any damaged stems that need to be removed.
Using the right equipment and tools is important. Long sleeves and really good gloves are a must. I highly recommend deerskin gloves. Deerskin are the only leather gloves I know of that prevent thorns from stabbing your hands. See http://wp.me/p1OXDF-7V
Using sharp (to make clean cuts), clean (to prevent disease) tools is also a must. Use pruners and loppers (for the thicker stems) to make the cuts. The long handles of the loppers allow you to reach without getting your arms in the thorns.
Make 45′ cuts, just above a bud that is facing away from the center of the plant. Make the cut about 1/4″ from the bud, as shown in the picture.
First, remove any of the dead leaves that are left. Then remove any dead wood (usually dark brown or black). Then remove stems that are damaged, broken or diseased. Also remove any suckers that are coming up. (Suckers are stems that grow from the root stock, below the graft)
Second, evaluate the shape of the bush. Remove the very small branches and enough stems to open up the center so light can reach it and to allow for better air circulation. This will help to prevent many diseases caused by moisture on the leaves. The stems that are remaining should be cut back to about half their height.
Some roses don’t need pruning. Shrub roses, such as Rugosas for instance, are fine left on their own. Climbing or rambling roses only need pruning to thin or to control the growth.
Don’t be intimidated by all the hoopla about pruning roses. Pruning really helps the plants and a healthy rose bush isn’t easily killed by incorrect pruning. Besides…it will grow out.
So give it a try.
The Fairy is a small rose that puts on a big show. Once it gets established, it will bloom its little heart out. It can have blooms summer and fall. Even though the rose blossoms are only about 1 inch across, they are borne in clusters and usually cover the whole plant.
The Fairy is a miniature rose (polyanthus) that is great for the front of the flower bed or planted in groupings make a good ground cover. They grow to be about 2 feet high and wide.
To thrive they need full sunlight, moderate moisture and room to grow. They grow in Hardiness Zones 5 – 9. Find out which Zone you’re in by going to the Zone Map at: http://wp.me/P1OXDF-oK
I have them in my garden at the front of the perennial border, but this year I’m going to put some in beautiful pots to grow in on the deck.
They’ve earned their fabulous reputation.
For more rose information, check out these pages
If you like to spend at least part of the winter planning what you’re going to do in your garden next spring and summer, then having a little information can be helpful.
Have you checked out the “Tabs” at the top of the page? Under the “Flowers” tab there are list of annuals, and perennials with their growing habits and needs.
The “Birds” tab will give some information about feeding the birds to keep them coming to your yard to gobble up all those “bad bugs’ eating your garden.
The more information you have, the more successful your garden will be.
When it’s freezing cold outside and the snow is blowing and I know there is still 4 long months until I can really “garden” again, I start looking through pictures of last years garden. It’s really fun to compare them with the pictures of our garden the year before, to see how things have progressed. The grape vines had made it to the top of the arbor the previous year, and this past summer they had began to fill in the top. This coming summer I’m hoping the arbor will be shaded, at least for part of the summer.
It’s also fun to compare the early spring pictures with the late summer pictures. The transformation is amazing.
My “above all the other” pictures I love to look at are the ones of my roses. It is so wonderful to live in a climate that roses thrive in (hot and dry on summer days with cool nights). I’ve used all different kinds of roses around the garden. The tall, shrub roses will help to divide the “garden rooms” and the climbing roses will cover the arbor at the south gate of the picket fence and also grow along the fence along the driveway. The miniature roses are being used as a sort of ground cover out on the corner, outside the picket fence, and the hybrid teas are mixed and mingled among all the flower beds throughout the garden, back yard and front.
Share some of my Winter Cheer and dream of the spring and summer to come.
The following pictures are from an amazing rose garden near us. I wouldn’t mind my garden looking like it one day.
If you liked it – click it! The Google +1 button, and any of the other buttons too. Much thanks.
When I drew up the plans for our little yard, about 1/4 acre, I knew we wanted to put in about 20 fruit trees and three 16’x4′ raised beds for vegetables. We were planning on putting a 50’x10′ grape arbor and a 32’x16′ deck. That didn’t leave much room for an asparagus bed, a raspberry bed and a blackberry/strawberry bed much less all the perennials I wanted to put in. But I love roses and thought I could squeeze at least 5 or 6 in. I chose Queen Elizabeth’s for their robustness and their great height since I was trying to create ‘rooms’ in the back yard. I also put in a couple of Medallion because I love the color. Two New Dawn went in because I planned to have an arbor over one of the gates and I wanted one to grow along the picket fence. (More about that mistake later.)
One day when we were having lunch at a little place I looked across the street and couldn’t believe my eyes. I’d never seen so many roses in one place before. They were covering the side of a two story building. The corner lot had a wide parking strip and it was completely full of huge rose bushes. After lunch we walked over to have a look. What we’d thought was an empty office
building was actually someone’s home. Obviously a bigger rose nut than me. A lady came out and said we could go into the back yard for a look around. It was unbelievable. In this 1/3 acre there were 500 of the healthiest roses in full bloom. Magical, just magical. It really changed my perspective. I realized I just wasn’t planting mine close enough. I now have 108 but I think I may be done. I love the ones I have but I probably wouldn’t turn one down if it really wanted to come home with me.
I wish there was enough space to share all of my pictures of this place. Every week during the summer we’d go for Garden Talks in the Park where really good gardeners would teach and answer questions. The “Rose Man” spoke one night and I was so impressed with him. He wasn’t even speaking on roses but on organic gardening and it came out that he was the one who lives there.
So I learned to not be limited by space. There’s always room for one more.