Thursday, Aug. 01, 2002 – 12:14 p.m.
It has been a week and I still have not seen any beetles. WeeHee! However, the blackspot has showed up with a vengeance. Next year, I am going to have to spray every 3 days alternating stuff for beetles and fungicide. Bleck!
One of the issues right now with spraying is the heat. Almost all the products recommend not spraying when the temp is above 90 degrees so one should spray in the early morning or the evening. I don’t really want to be in the full spraying regalia (longsleeve shirt, gloves, goggles, hat, air mask) when it is 80 let alone hotter than 90. The problem is that it may be relatively cool in the morning (in the 70s) but it doesn’t take long for the sun to hit and then you have to issue of droplet burn (where the standing droplets act as lens and focus the sunlight, burning the leaf underneath) and the bad chemical effects from the chemicals. Ok, that means spraying at sunset…. assuming that one can get home during that time (I have been doing a lot of “overtime” at the office lately). The other option is to get up REALLY early and at morning twilight. Hmmm… I need to check the labels on some of these products and see if I could mix them the night before and just get up, suit up, and go spray.
So, yesterday was Wednesday, spray day. Since I have been spraying with the Orthonex (which does contain a fungicide component), I decided to go to an alternate pesticide: Bonide Fruit Tree Spray. This time it took of spray. I guess I have more rose surface area now but it did treat ALL the roses including the potted miniatures. Since I only have a 2-gallon sprayer, I may have to get a bigger hand sprayer. something for the wish list.
Necessities of Life
After the depredations of blossoms by the beetles in recent weeks, a number of bushes have been deviod of blossoms. Right now, Peace, Mr. Lincoln, Suffolk, and Fragrant Cloud have NO blooms and JFK, Voodoo, Artistry, Queen Elizabeth, Scentimental, and Artistry have just a few. On the other hand, Perfect Moment and Double Delight are blooming like gangbusters! I had a good set of blooms on the Francis Dubrieul over the past week and many of the newer rose seem to be doing very well.
I am thinking that the issue may be food so earlier this week I did a sprinking of rose food around most of the plants and watered it in. We will see if that helps. I have also started watering via the set of soaker hoses that I have put in the various beds. Given that we have been having heat advisories this week, I figured that they may need more water.
A Bug of a Better Sort
While deadheading the roses day before yesterday, I was about to knock a “dead stick” off one of the bushes when it turned and looked at me. It was a beautiful mottled -gray praying mantis, about 2.5 inches long. I think these are fascinating creatures. I told her that she could stay as long as she liked and to feel free to invite all her friends and relations to come as well. Seeing this girl (I am assuming that it was a female) is like seeing the goldfinches. It just makes me feel good.
That’s all for now!