Thursday, June 27, 2002 – 6:00 p.m.
Last night we had a blessed thunderstorm, not one of those fast moving squalls, but a rain-for-more-than-an-hour rain. According to the NWS at the airport, we had gotten 0.41 inches of rain. Since the house is about 4 miles from the airport, that seem a pretty fair esitmate the house. The other good thing about this rain was it came pretty much after sunset so it didn’t just evaportate when the sun came out. That’s not to say that the humidity didn’t go through the roof. From that point of view, it was not so good for the roses. Warm, wet, and dark…. perfect climate for fungal growth. But, hey, that’s why I spray with fungicide.
This morning I went out to do some dead-heading (cutting off the spent blooms… that way the plant puts its energy into more blooms, leaves, etc rather than developing the rose hips) Early morning is also one of the better times to pick off the beetles. As I walked out to the garden, I had the pleasure of seeing about a half dozen goldfinches rise from the wildflower patch. I had been thinking about putting roses in that bed but I have now changed my mnid. It is just too enjoyable to see those beautiful birds flittering around.
In spite of the bugs, it appears that we are heading into a good second flush of blooms. The Peace, JFK, QE, Mr Lincoln, Suffolk, and Scentimental have a number of buds that are openning or about to.do so.
The enemy bugs are still in evidence. [sigh] The Voodoo can’t get a bud on it without the bloom being overwhelmed and eaten. I am not sure what it is about this rose that attracts the beetles. It is getting to be july so hopefully the beetle ssason should be drawing to close; in the past, we have seen japanese beetles for about 6 weeks and then they disappear….-thank-goodness!