Riverbanks botanical garden

Monday, May. 06, 2002 – 12:02 a.m.

2002-05-06 12:02

Here I am back from Crown Tourney in Border Vale Keep. A fine tourney and the weather generally cooperated. It only spit rain a little bit during the tourney itself. So what happens if it is storming all day the day of the tourney??

Since my parents live in Columbia and that is directly on the route from here to Border Vale Keep (Augusta, GA), I took the opportunity to visit with my parents over the weekend. There was also the Columbia Rose Show this weekend (you know it had to get back to roses, right?) Unfortunately, despite the fact that the notice in the rose society newsletter said the show was both Saturday and Sunday, I talked with the contact person for the show on friday and she said they had cut it back t 1 day… Saturday….

Seeing as how the show in Columbia was yesterday and not today, today my parents and I went to the Riverbanks Zoo. It has changed a lot since I was last there. The thing that interested me was the new (at least to me) botanical gardens. After wandering around the zoo looking at the animals (the gorilas were very interesting although it was nap time for them.), we walked acrose the river and went to the “Walled Garden” portion of the botanical part. While there were some roses in the other portions of the Walled Garden, one end of was devoted to roses, particularly Noisette, China, and Tea varieties. The significance of this is that the Noisette roses was originally developed in South Carolina. In addition, South Carolina was at one time considered the horticultural center for the US so there were varieties that reflected that. Another interesting point was that there were a number of “rescued” varieties. These are plants that cannot be distinctly identified which have been propagated from found plants around the state and country. As it was, a number of the plants looked a little ragged because they don’t do any spraying. In addition, a number of the plants had recently bloomed so they had blossoms which were way past. I did see some interesting specimens however; one of the more interesting was the Swamp Rose (Rosa palustris ) which had good size pink single blossoms and virtually no thorns. Dad asked me to check into this variety to see if it is shade-tolerant. He wants to grow it over an arbor near the back of the house.

On the way back to the house from the zoo, I notice what looked like a large rose thicket at the bottom of Whaley Steet next to the rail overpass (by Whaley’s Mill). As I was leaving town, I stopped to check it out and BOY is it a rose thicket! I don’t know the variety (yet) but patch is a good 10-12 ft high (ok it’s on a bank but on the top of the bank it was still well over my head) and so dense you could not put your hand into it. The blossoms are a single, white with yellow stamens and probably about 3″ across. While there were a few blooms right now, it was covered with buds. It should be spectacular in a week or two. It would be interesting to see if it blooms once this year or all summer.

Well, I am off to bed or else I will be worthless tomorrow….

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