Secret Rose and Yellow Leaves

“Secret” is one of the two hybrid tea roses that I planted in the garden this Spring. It has gorgeous, large blooms, a strong perfume, and attractive dark green foliage. I think that it makes a really nice addition to the garden.

Unfortunately, both my Secret and my Royal Amethyst – my other new hybrid tea – are  suffering from some sort of stress right now, which is apparent from the yellowing of the lower leaves on both bushes. Yellow leaves can be caused by a number of different factors: over or under watering, over fertilizing, wrong soil ph, disease, pests, radiant heat, inadequate sunlight, and probably some stressors of which I am not even aware. 

Nevertheless, I am optimistic that both rose bushes will be fine. Since we had a recent spike in temperatures – from the 70’s to the 90’s in just a few days – I am guessing that the heat is a factor and whenever heat is a factor so is watering. So for the next few weeks, I will watch these two carefully and feel the soil beneath the surface daily to evaluate their water needs. Over the years, I have planted and cared for about 75 roses at the different places I have lived and I have only had one die. So that is a pretty good track record … but still I have my fingers crossed! I hope to be able to give you a positive update soon. 

Have a lovely weekend!

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Lovely Kates

Asiatic Lily “Kiss Me Kate” – named, I assume after the Cole Porter musical – is the standout in my garden this week.  I planted the “Kate” bulbs in 2000 and they are still producing beautifully every year. This year, however, we had unusually cool weather for early June – that is, until yesterday afternoon when our official temperature was 99 degrees F. As a result, I had the opportunity to observe that the blooms that opened during the cooler temperatures had much darker coloration than those that opened on warmer days. Kiss Me Kate is a bicolor lily often described as being magenta and creamy yellow. Mine are usually a mauvish-pink turning to salmon-pink at the border of the yellow centers; and just this year did I see a few that were close to red on the outer edges. I have 5 groupings of the Kates, standing at about 3 feet tall. In early morning and early evening light, the colors look like those of the sunset.

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Royal Amethyst Rose

I have a weakness for roses. Even though I really didn’t have room for them, I added two beautiful hybrid tea roses to the garden this year, which meant digging up some of my perennials and putting them in pots. One of the roses is Royal Amethyst – a gorgeous and highly fragrant plumish-pink rose.  It is supposed to put on the showiest blooms during cooler weather – which is exactly what we have been having this spring. (We’ll have to see what summer holds in store.)

I wish that I could add a dab of fragrance to this blog to go along with the photos. Can you imagine the fruity-rose scent of these blooms?

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Marilyn in the Cold

These are photos of my Marilyn Monroe rose that I took this morning. Brrr …

Marilyn Monroe is considered an apricot-colored rose, but the color of rose blooms is often affected by temperatures and seasons. This last bloom of the year was a true pink, but with lime green outer petals – stunning, even in the cold.

Mystery Blooms in the Garden

As I recently learned from Redneck Rosarian, June is National Rose Month … a perfect excuse to once again write about roses.

I have several ground cover roses in my garden. When I purchased them at least 8 years ago, they were labelled “Red”. In truth, they are more of a magenta. Anyhow, I am quite fond of them. They bloom from mid-Spring through Autumn and add a lot of color to the landscape … and they have proven hardy in Kansas. Now here is my mystery. A few weeks ago, one of the bushes, at the end of one branch, started producing clusters of pale pink roses.  At first I thought that I was seeing an errant limb from Flower Carpet Pink, but both the form of the flower and the color were wrong to belong to that other rose. Upon closer examination, I could see that the pale pink blooms were definitely coming from the magenta ground cover rose bush. The flowers on the rest of the branch matched the rest of the bush. What has happened to cause this mutation? Will there be more mismatched roses? Nature is full of mysteries. Fortunately, this is a fun one.

Magenta/Red Ground Cover Roses

Mystery Blooms (2 colors on the same branch)

“Flower Carpet Pink” Rose

You Can’t Give Away Kindness

Kindness is difficult to give away because it always keeps coming back

In recent weeks we have hosted a potpourri of events at the Bed & Breakfast. Afterward, several of our guests sent us flowers to thank us. We, of course, did not expect flowers; but it did make us feel appreciated and that’s a nice feeling. Moreover, it was a reminder of why we do our best to do more than just what is expected of us. It is rewarding to see that our work makes people happy. How lucky we are to have such gracious guests and so many guests that we can call friends!

Memorial Day Rose

Memorial Day will soon be here. Appropriately, we -meaning my helper Benjamin, with me looking over his shoulder, giving instructions, and taking photos – planted an eponymously named rose today. Originally called Decoration Day, a day to honor Union soldiers fallen during the Civil War, in the 20th century Memorial Day became a holiday to honor all American soldiers killed in war. Often, however, people use the day to pay respects to any loved ones who have passed away.

Memorial Day Rose, a 2004 Weeks Rose introduction and AARS winner, is a hybrid tea rose with a strong damask rose fragrance. It’s just heavenly. When I was looking for a rose to bring home to plant, I sniffed every single variety at the garden center. While there were several others – Mr. Lincoln and Fragrant Cloud –  to which my nose gave equally high scores, I thought that Memorial Day would look best in the spot that I had picked out. And as I thought about it, I realized that this rose was an excellent selection for more than aesthetic reasons.

My father-in-law, a highly decorated war veteran, recently passed away. So, I think that as members of our family pass by this rose in the garden, the sweet fragrance of Memorial Day may occasion pleasant memories of time spent with Bob.

Memorial Day Rose

Benjamin planting Memorial Day Rose