Roses are Fascinating with Secrets Deep in their Soaring Delights
Roses- The Beautiful, Amazing, Remarkable — The Queen of Flowers
The Alluring Rose will Conquer Your Soul — Part 1
This is the first installment.
We lived in a traditional 2-story house with a small yard (50”x150”).
Our cold climate limited roses to those that could survive the bitter winters — as in Proctor Minnesota. However, in my experience the big killer was springtime.
I was trying to grow varieties of hybrid tea roses as they do in the spectacular Rose Garden in Duluth MN just about 15 minutes drive on the Interstate.
I prepared a mound that would be of a size to plant about 18 roses. More on that in a future post.
I would spread out a blue plastic tarp and pour one-third of each topsoil, compost/manure, sphagnum peat moss and a good amount of perlite.
Duluth Rose Garden is only a 15-minute drive but it is an entirely different climate. No doubt it is Zone 4 compared to my Zone 3.
Lake Superior provides a little cover by moderating the weather.
I have read books and books on the subject. Because of the Internet, I can find an answer to almost all questions that arise.
This is not a formal rose gardening article. I don’t pretend to be an expert or even moderately educated on roses.
This is the story of my successes and failures of growing roses for over 20 years.
Hopefully, you will find it somewhat helpful and a little entertaining.
Why write about this?
Hopefully, it will be cathartic. It is a memorial to all the roses and flowers that died at my hands over more than 20 years dreaming, planning, digging and resolving frustrations.
20 years of growing roses, trees, shrubs, and a variety of plants
20 years of spending time in the dead of winter absorbing rose catalogs like Jackson-Perkins, Roses, Wayside Gardens, The American Rose Society and my absolute favorite Hortico Gardens in Canada.
Warning! Once the thought “maybe I should try growing a rose” strikes you are on the garden path to addiction.
A word of caution. If you are in a let’s say, grocery superstore or a big box store and see “SALE Rose Shrubs” and you see bare-root roses, all shiny with a waxy look, with a price of $3.99 or so, RUN!
These are not what you are looking for.
A Rose by any other name…
The rose is called “The Queen of flowers” for a reason. There are times that an appellation “The Symbol of Love” is also added.
And rightly so. Why not grow a beautiful, fragrant rose and gently scatter rose petals on your the love of your life’s pillow. Before she wakes I would recommend.
She will wake up to a delicious, fragrant surprise and you gain another title, as the ‘Man of Ultimate Romance’. I wonder where that will lead?
She might even take a fancy to help tend the roses by deadheading spent blossoms. She may even bring blossoms into the house that you can feast on the aroma when you arrive home from work.
Come on! Take a baby step.
Let’s go to http://www.hortico.com/roses/.
Is that all there is you think to yourself.
Ah ‘grasshopper’’. Click on ‘roses by section’. A yellow box will pop up with about 30 different TYPES of the queen will pop up.
Each type contains dozens of different plants,
What a way to spend a cold, blustery winter evening. The fire is crackling in the fireplace, a toddy is close at hand.
Soon you are warm inside also. Color, blossoms, forms, and texture start you buzzing with excitement.
Which ones will grow in my Zone 3 on the zone map?
Where can I place her my yard so she shines and preens for you and your guest?
You have to buy one that will be happy where you plant her and will grow and blossom for years to come.
A few of my favorites that grow well in Zone3 climates.
A Purple Pavement rose from Heirloom Roses. Pavement Roses are usually fragrant but Snow Pavement is the most fragrant.
An excellent guide to the Pavement Series of roses is here. Good description, a good guide to growing, clear Language.
Don’t be scared off by the section on problems. I never had any problems with any of the roses I recommend.
Here is a picture of one of my highlights:
This bush started as 2 plants. It is now about 4 feet tall with a spread of 8 feet.
She sits just off the front walkway to the house. As you approach the house you catch her sweet fragrance. Soft, tantalizing, great to bring into the house and float blossoms in a shallow dish with tepid water. (Would you like to come indoors and immediately soak your feet in the cold water? I think not.)
She will reward you for years (mine is about 20 years young and still going strong.)
I cut her to the ground two years ago. All of the old dead canes are gone. Fresh new robust green branches as she quickly approaches her previous height.
She will have an amazing show of blossoms in her first flush this year. She will be greatly missed.
As will all of the gardens.
After 48 years my bride and I had to move to an apartment. My legs just can’t do stairs anymore. With no cartilage in my knees compounded by the nasty effects of diabetes in my feet, I haven’t been able to tend the gardens the last few years.
I hope you have been rewarded with a brief introduction to roses and how I feed my fascination for over twenty years.
Please leave your comments. If you have questions I will try my best to answer them.
Next, we will start looking at each garden.
Thanks for stopping.