Thursday, Nov. 27, 2003 – 9:07 a.m.
One of the things that rose enthusiast do in the fall is the planning and ordering of their roses for the next year. Most of the mail order places ship the bare root plants between January and April, depending on your area. The idea is to get the bushes in the ground before roses break winter dormancy. If you put them in too late, they don’t get a chance to develop good roots before they have to grow leaves and that tends to stunt the plant. I think that’s what happened year before last with the bushes I got from Witherspoon. I put them in too late. In this area, probably the best time to plant is late Feb to early March for bare root plants. If the plants are in pots already, one can wait until April or even May but again the later one plants, the less time the bush has to get acclimated before the heat of summer kicks in.
So, at this point, I am looking at the garden and deciding what to add, what to move, and yes, even what to get rid of. I am finding my interests being pulled more and more to the OGR varieties rather than the modern Hybrid Teas. I am also looking at the fact that period roses tend to be once-a-year bloomers. Therefore, for much of the year, I just have a green bush. I need to mix things up so that I don’t end up with whole beds that have no color for much of the year. Fortunately the pruning workshop in Feb is a good place to take all the roses I am going to get rid of. Let them go to good homes.
The growth habit of the bushes also needs to be considered. For example, I currently have my Madame Hardy (a once-blooming Damask), Rosa Mundi (a once-blooming Gallica), and Rembrandt (a once blooming Portland) in the same bed. Each of those has canes that are as tall as me if not taller. Behind these are Glowing Peace (HT) and French Lace (Floribunda) plants. With the height and density of the OGRs, one can’t see the Glowing Peace or French Lace unless you are standing in my neighbors yard. Since he has a 7 ft privacy fence, the view of these is lost to him.
Therefore, I figure I will move those two bushes into the new bed and probably put an Alba in their place. The Rosa Mundi I will move to the far corner of the bed by the fence. This will mean moving the Fragrant Cloud (HT) to the new bed as well. I am also thinking that the place I have the Iceberg (Floribunda) would better server another Gallica, maybe something like Tuscany.
Beyond that, I need to actually sit down with a map and draw things out.