Saturday, June 21, 2014

Rosy Surprises

I have been thinking for weeks about writing a post about my Pernetiana roses...

Mme Edouard Herriot

... but some, though full of buds, have still not begun to bloom. I have to be patient. Meanwhile, the rest of my roses are well into their second flush.

'Benny Lopez'

 I try to enjoy them as much as I can even though thrips have descended en masse....

Étoile de Lyon showing dark streaks on petals damaged by thrips 

.... and I have to remember to check for cucumber beetles every time I want to smell a bloom.

A spotted cucumber beetle feeding on Étoile de Feu

 I can never expect perfection in the garden, but if I look closely, there are always surprises, hopefully pleasant, waiting to be discovered.

My white seedling of Purple Pavement, which blooms much more than its parent and, despite complete neglect, does not seem to get chlorotic

 I acquired Dame Edith Helen, an older, "classic" hybrid tea, about 6 years ago. I was told it was a smallish, weak grower with gorgeous fragrant blooms.

 Because of its lack of vigor, I put it in a permanent pot where I was hoping I could admire its lovely blooms. Not for long, as it turned out. It produced a lot of big healthy canes that grew straight up. Most of its blooms are now well above my head, which is quite a feat for a small, weak rose.

 A while ago, I wrote about my Maréchal Niel which I took out because it was slowly declining. The plant seemed to have almost no roots, but I pruned it hard and put it in a pot. I expected a swift demise due to a lack of roots, stress from being dug out in the heat,  exposure to scorching sun of its mostly leafless canes, and, last but not least, the hard pruning which this fussy rose is supposed to resent. To my astonishment, it is bursting into new growth. No dieback, and no sunburned canes either. The more I garden, the less sure I become of my knowledge of plant behavior.

However, this uncertainty is largely why I enjoy roses so much. They are unpredictable. They surprise me every day. They are the reason why I think of gardening as a never ending adventure.

Tropical Fragrance


Ulrich Brunner Fils


Sir Henry Segrave

Mme Bérard

September Morn

Break o'Day

'Tina Marie'

'Secret Garden Musk Climber'

Beauté de l'Europe


Cynthia Brooke

Shön Ingeborg


Hermann Lindecke