Sunday, June 14, 2009

A Rose is a Rose is a Rose is a Rose*

Hot Cocoa in all its glory last summer

In the garden of the first house I inhabited here in Vancouver I carefully nurtured 23 roses, with all that entailed: pruning, spraying, deadheading, etc.

When I moved here more than 30 years ago, the garden was barely established and there were a couple of roses which did not do at all well. Since this house has an east/west location and not really enough hours of sun, especially as the trees grew, it became more of a shade garden. Eventually I reefed out the roses and decided no more.

But last year, on a visit to the nursery, I was tempted again to consider them. After a long conversation with someone I met there who was a member of the Vancouver Rose Society and who assured me they would do very well in containers, I bought two roses: Hot Cocoa (above), a gorgeous floribunda, an All America Rose Selection winner in 2003 and Indian Summer (below), a large flowered hybrid tea rose with a lovely scent.

As you recall we had quite the harsh winter last year and sadly Hot Cocoa succumbed while Indian Summer seems to be made of sterner stuff and is blooming again faithfully as you can see here.

Indian Summer, in all its glory, except for the holes in the leaves!

Now the newer roses are supposedly more resistant to pests and disease. I now take a rather hands off attitude to my roses, since I don't like to use poisons or rather I am too lazy to go to all that fuss. But I would not say that the roses I have at the moment are exactly pest/disease free. In fact quite the opposite.

How ugly are these leaves, for whatever reason

Since I loved the unique colours and the floriferous performance of Hot Cocoa last year I decided to buy another (below). What the heck? As you can clearly see this is marked (well you can if you click on it to enlarge) Hot Cocoa but the rose is white!!!!! Next time I'll wait until there is a flower in bloom before I buy.

Early in the season a friend said to me, "I am going to buy one of the new roses. I don't care what colour it is but it has to be one of those new pest/disease free ones." Great idea. So I bought one too. Carefree Celebration, introduced in 2007 and guaranteed to be very disease resistant. What I did not notice is that it grows rather large in size, not quite suitable for a container. That will teach me to read the whole notice and not get sucked in by the carefree assurance.

Carefree Celebration, flowering quite nicely but a bit chewed too

Oh well, there is always next year.

* A quote from Gertrude Stein (probably her most famous), now part of the lexicon meaning, "things are just what they are".


Ellee Seymour said...

I would love a beautiful rose garden, I always admire them. Why do roses have those prickly thorns though?

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

I love roses, but gave up on trying to grow them long ago. Perhaps I should try again here, where they seem to do remarkably well. I can see why you bought another "Hot Cocoa" and "Indian Summer" is beautiful.

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Eurodog said...

Gertrude Stein was a formidable lady and her partner Alice B. Toklias was described by many as "frightening".
I love roses too. As for pesticides, I am with you on that and I use my grandmother's recipe for treating greenfly but the other day I used the concoction on a bush with curly leaves and it worked. What you do?
I do not know in what form or shape you can buy old fashioned soap in Canada. In France it is referred to as "savon de Marseilles". In Belgium we also have "savon noir". Ideally it is purchased in liquid or syrup form. Take a good handful of the stuff and put it in a 10L bucket and pour boiling water on it. Stir with a wooden spoon until the mixture has dissolved. Leave overnight. Next day pour the liquid in a spraycan and spray the afflicted roses. Don't do this in full sunlight. Repeat a few days later. It works.

rlbates said...

Beautiful, JMB!!!

Anonymous said...

Lovely roses, I do wish I'm able to smell it though! :)

Liz said...

I love roses but they must be scented. That disease/infestation looks rather ugly!

Voyager said...

I lost both my rose bushes to our nasty winter this year. And my bay laurel, mexican orange, and every New Zealand flax. What will you do with the potted rose bushes in winter? They are especially susceptible to cold when they are in pots.

CherryPie said...

The blooms are very beautiful even if the leaves need a bit of TLC :-)

jams o donnell said...

Those are beautiful blooms jmb. I must post some shots of our roses

jmb said...

I love to see roses but not to take care of them now Ellee. There must be an evolutionary reason for thorns.

You might look for a carefree one Welshcakes, but just watch the size.

I do have some Safer's soap Eurodog. I thought I would use it when the aphids appeared but the holes were there almost overnight. Thanks for the tip.

Thanks Ramona, roses are beautiful.

The new roses seem to have lost that wonderful smell Elaine but Indian Summer is very fragrant.

Doesn't it Liz? I am rather disappointed to say the least.

Yes Voyager, they are not as protected from cold in pots but I thought I would give it a try. One survived very well. I think the container has to be quite large.

Thanks Cherie. Too late now. But maybe next year.

I look forward to your roses Jams.

Thanks to everyone for visiting and commenting.

Carver said...

Indian summer is a beautiful rose. They are all beautiful but that's my favorite. We've had such a wet spring and summer, that my roses are suffering from black spot but still loads of pretty flowers so I'm not sweating it. I started planting roses here 23 years ago and remarkably haven't lost any of them although one is now in deep shade. Some varieties seem to do well with shade. I have some in full sun but several with a lot of shade. However, I think your idea of container roses is a good one.

Rositta said...

We have a complete chemical ban in the entire province of Ontario including rose dust. All my roses are covered with aphids and nothing I do gets rid of them. I think I'll dig them all out and toss them, I can't deal with the bugs. Mine used to be beautiful, not any more...ciao

Moggs Tigerpaw said...

To deal with aphids. I know you can get insect soap that is allowed with organic gardening.

Home made stuff. I knew someone who swore by this (they smoked so could use cigarette ends). Buy a pack of cigarettes and put several in a bottle of water to steep and then spray that on.

Another thing is chilli pepper. Steep some in water and spray that on the plants, but be careful of the spray blowing in your eyes.

I like more old fashioned looking roses like rugosa with simple pretty flowers and large hips you can make jam out of.

jmb said...

Hi carver. I would like to know which roses like shade. But the truth is it is easier with them in containers. I just have to be careful not to buy too many of them.

Yes Rositta, almost an impossibility not to use pesticides. Especially for mildew.

Moggs I have never found the Safer's soap to be so great in controlling the aphids. Perhaps I did not use it often enough.
Hips for jam? You are energetic.

Thanks again to everyone for visiting and commenting.

Anonymous said...

A rose by any other name would smell as sweeet... apparently.

Sean Jeating said...

I prefer your kind of roses to those which are industrial grown and in a way look like Barbie<>, if you understand what I mean, and are not metagobrolized. :)

Moggs Tigerpaw said...

JMB, Hips + something like quince or apple. And these are good sized hips.

Sean Jeating said...

Good morning, Mylady.
Here I am for a tiny exercise - writing 100 times "If I want to encourage resurrection of "that word" I'd better spell metagrobolized" correctly."
1.If I want to encourage resurrection of "that word" I'd better spell metagrobolized" correctly.
2. If I want to encourage resurrection of "that word" I'd better spell metagrobolized" correctly.
100. If I want to encourage resurrection of "that word" I'd better spell metagrobolized" correctly.

jmb said...

Too true Muts. But only some of them have perfume now as they have been altered so much.

Lucky you don't have to articulate that word Sean. After 100 lines I think you must have the spelling down pat and I have the meaning down pat too.

Yes Miss Moggs, quince and apple are large items for jelly but rose hips are tiny in comparison. They are supposed to be good for you however.

Thanks all for visiting and commenting.

Moggs Tigerpaw said...

The hips I am thinking of can be up to an inch in dia. The Quince or apple for pectin.