Downton Abbey Rose Contest!

Downton Abbey, everybody’s favorite British Serial Drama is in it’s 6th and final season. This show has captured the attention of people around the world in a way that few, if any, shows have ever done!

I am having a very hard time accepting that this is the final season. Mercy, we’ve been through a lot together in these 6 seasons … marriages, war, feuds, funerals, hats, family dinners (some of them quite uncomfortable),  kitchen talk and beautiful flowers. I can’t wait from one family dinner to the next to see what flowers will grace the table!

WEEKS ROSES BRINGS US A DOWNTON INSPIRED COLLECTION

When I first heard that Weeks Roses was to  release a Downton Abbey series of roses, I thought that this couldn’t be more perfect. This show brought us aristocratic beauty, romance, elegance and sass–just perfect for roses!

Have you seen the roses in this collection? They are spectacular… a wonderful and very fitting collection.

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ROSE CHAT WANTS TO  HELP YOU WIN THE ENTIRE COLLECTION!

Rose Chat has teamed with Weeks roses to offer the entire Downton Abbey collection.

One lucky winner will receive four bare root roses shipped to you during your planting season: Pretty Lady Rose, Edith’s Darling, Anna’s Promise and Violet’s Pride.

Earn bonus entries when you LIKE our Facebook page or SUBSCRIBE to our newsletter.

Listen to our Podcast with Karen Kemp-Docksteader, sales and marketing manager, from Weeks Roses. Karen talks about the show and this wonderful collection of roses. RoseChatPodcast.com

CONTEST DETAILS HERE.


THE COLLECTION…

ANNA’S PROMISE
The first release was to honor Anna Bates, everyone’s favorite lady’s maid. This unique and complex colour combination is a fitting representation of the character Anna Bates. Read more about Anna’s rose here.

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PRETTY LADY ROSE
This large English styled fragrant bloom was inspired by Lady Rose, niece and goddaughter of the Dowager Countess Violet. Read more about the rose here.

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EDITH’S DARLING
This true old-fashioned soft apricot-gold gem of a flower is a fitting tribute Lady Edith and her beloved daughter, Marigold. Read more about this rose here.

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VIOLET’S PRIDE
Last but certainly not least, is Violet’s Pride!

These aristocratic, resilient, sophisticated blooms were inspired by the iconic shades of Lady Violet’s lavender dresses. Read more about this rose here.

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GOOD LUCK ON THE CONTEST!

Contest ends midnight on Saturday, Feb 13.


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DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE?

All this talk about Downton Abbey has me wondering who your favorite character is.

I can tell  you mine…

It’s JOHN BATES.

Quiet, cautious, strong, loyal, and that smile he gives to Anna–yes, my fav is Mr. Bates.

 

Love is in the air…

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Valentine’s Day is the perfect time to tell those you love that they are special to you. To me that message is best conveyed with flowers and food. A special bokay … a special dessert … a special meal … a chocolate surprise (this is a favorite of our little H these days).

In the 1800s there was a special language of flowers that made a floral offering very specific to the one giving and the one receiving. An arrangement of flowers and herbs were often given in a small nosegay called a Tussie Mussie.

Since we do not have the advantage of floral dictionaries common in those days, we might have to explain the flowers offerings we share. But, I’m thinking it might just be worth the effort to make someone’s day.

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Here are a few of my favorite herbs and flowers and their meanings….

Basil: Best Wishes
Black Eyed Susan: Encouragement
Daisy: Beauty, Innocence
Parsley: Joy
Pink Carnation: Gratitude
Rosemary: Remembrance
Lavender: Devotion
Lily of the Valley: Sweetness
Lemon Verbena: Enchantment
Red Rose: I love you, desire
Pink Rose: Appreciation
Yellow Rose: Friendship
Lavender Roses: Love at first sight and enchantment
Zinnia: Thoughts of absent friends

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From me to you…

I am virtually putting together a Tussie Mussie for you. It includes yellow and pink roses with a touch of rosemary and basil. :)

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!

💌 💌 💌💌 💌

Rose Buzz: Poseidon Floribunda

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If you are looking for a lovely lavender rose to add to your garden this is the one! I love the soft color. It pairs so beautifully with all the pinkness that goes on in my garden! 😃

The blooms on this beautiful Kordes rose are large, full, ruffly and fragrant. Win. Win. Win. Win.IMG_2509

This rose grows tall and narrow in my garden so I have 5 growing close together for a more dramatic look.

I have read that it is hardy in Zones 5b – 9 and I have also read recommendations that it does best in Zones 6 – 9. While officially my garden is in Zone 5b, the last 3 years that I have grown this rose, the winters have all been very different from each other! #crazyweather

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This rose is one of the most disease resistant roses in my garden, which is just the icing on the cake as far as I’m concerned!
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I checked and Chamblee Roses has it! Read more or purchase here.

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I think this blog post should carry a warning–#excessivepictures! But, I just love taking pictures of this rose! :)

Do you grow Poseidon or have other recommendations for lavender roses?

Let us know.

🐝🐝🐝

Rose Buzz: Beverly HT

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I am so excited to share my Beverly Hybrid Tea rose with you. It is a true beauty.

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This is a Kordes rose and Kordes roses are known for winter hardiness, disease resistance and beauty! Many are full petaled, with the old fashion form and fragrance. I have several Kordes roses in my garden and they have lived up to their reputation! More about those later.

Beverly’s blooms are so very pretty right from the beginning bud stage to fully open. The foliage is also amazing — almost looks unreal

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I have had this rose for 3 years and it rarely has any sign of disease. (Actually I have 5 of them.)

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This is one that will hold up very well in a vase for you too. The front rose in this vase from last summer is Beverly!

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A TRUE WINNER

At the 2013 Biltmore International Rose Trials, Beverly was a big winner, winning the award for Best Hybrid Tea and the coveted Most Fragrant Rose award.

SOURCES

If you are considering buying this rose, check out these sources…

Chamblee Roses

Edmunds Roses 

If you grow this rose, let me know your growing zone and how it performs for you!

🐝🐝🐝

Rose Buzz: Gruss an Aachen

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This light pink rose was hybridized in Germany by Wilhelm Hinner who worked for Philipp Geduldig’s nursery in 1908. Not only is this rose beautiful, it is also fragrant and has the multi-petaled lovely old world charm that I adore.

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It is considered by most to be the first floribunda. I have also read it is one of the more shade tolerant roses.

Since this rose grows to only about 3 high and wide, she will fit nicely in to most any sized garden. She did have some black spot issues in July when it was raining every day, but I cut her back, spritzed with Mil Stop and she finished strong and healthy.

I have 3 of these in the garden that were planted 3 years ago. While they bloomed well even the first year, last year was the best by far.

I originally had 4, but one had a harder time over the winter in my Zone 5 garden, so I dug it up. Since I love this rose so much, I couldn’t just throw it away; instead I lovingly planted it in a pot. And, I unlovingly forgot about it. The poor potted Gruss received very little care or water ALL SUMMER. It is now residing in my potting shed where I promise to pamper it over the winter. I just gave it a hardy drink of Moo Poo Tea and we will see how she does.

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By the way, Gruss means “Greetings” in German and Aachen is a city in Germany.

Do you grow this rose?

If you don’t and would like to, it is available at Chamblee Nursery here.  but I wouldn’t wait! Quantity is limited!


 

Whisper these gift ideas in Santa’s ear…

We as gardeners love what we do! But, the right tool can make all the difference and Christmas is the perfect time to share ideas with Santa to get just what we want and need for the coming growing season!

Below are some garden gifts that I highly recommend you buy for your garden friends OR whisper in Santa’s ear so they show up around your Christmas tree or in your stocking!

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THE GARDENER’S HOLLOW LEG…

Bob Blomberg’s  Gardener’s Hollow Leg® makes yard and garden clean up tasks easier! This handy “hands-free” debris holder is a must have for all pruning, weeding and harvesting tasks.

To learn more or to buy on line, read on … http://thegardenershollowleg.com/welcome.html

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THE RING WEEDER

Vinnie Suozzi’s Ring Weeder has a forked tip that pierces the ground with ease allowing you to loosen the soil around the weed to “pluck” it out without breaking off the root of the weed. Made of light weight high strength injection molded ABS plastic, The Ring Weeder allows you to get your weeding done swiftly.

For the details of how this product found it’s place in the garden, read on…HERE.
Listen to Vinnie tells his inspiring story HERE.

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MOO POO TEA

Annie Haven’s Moo Poo Tea has been a staple in my garden for many years. Whether I am using it to soak my bare root roses or bulbs before planting or adding moo poo tea to the over all care of all my plants in containers and in the ground, moo poo makes a major difference!

Try it for yourself … HERE. Shipping is always free!

 

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BARNEL PRUNERS AND BIONIC GLOVES FROM WENDY TILLEY, THE ROSE GARDENER

Who doesn’t want to be more bionic in the garden. I am convinced that without my Barnels and my bionic gloves … I would have a major loss of power!

Read all about these amazing tools and many more on Wendy’s website HERE.

Listen to Wendy give you the background stories, HERE.

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And, what about a membership to an organization that is near and dear to my heart!?!

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If you know someone who is interested in knowing more about roses, now is a great time to give them a trial membership to the American Rose Society.

You’ll receive discounts at public gardens, copies of their award winning magazine, American Rose, plus a ton of other benefits … all for only $10.

Details at Rose.org.


 

Christmas is really the MOST WONDERFUL TIME OF THE YEAR.

ENJOY EVERY MINUTE!

 


 

Christmas Cran

It’s that time of the year and many have asked for the Christmas Cran recipe. Here’s my original post. I hope your family enjoys it as much as our family does!

The Garden Diary

Many of you have asked for the recipe that my daughter affectionately named “Christmas Cran.”

I was introduced to this recipe when I bought my first microwave and was given the gift of a free microwave cooking class!

Several of the recipes I learned in the class I still make — but none more consistently than the cranberry sauce! Our family enjoys “Christmas Cran” every Christmas AND every Thanksgiving!

Sweet, citrusy goodness….

3/4 – 1 Cup of Sugar
1/4 teaspoon each of ground cloves, cinnamon and allspice (I usually add more cinnamon)
1/2 cup of apple or orange juice  (This year I used the juice from the tangerines I had on hand and it was fab.)
1 lb of whole cranberries
1 medium apple – peeled, cored and chopped
1/2 cup pecans or walnuts (They go in AFTER the cooking process.)

Combine SUGAR, SPICES and JUICE in 2 qt casserole…

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Bloom Thyme Friday: Growing Amaryllis

I love Amaryllis and love to give Amaryllis bulbs as gifts. A couple of years ago, Mr. G and I gave away 30 or so. Many of the recipients had never grown an Amaryllis or even knew what one was! It was a lot of fun hearing their stories. Even those with brown thumbs had success! If you’ve never grown an Amaryllis, it really is very easy and very rewarding!

I found these Red Lion Amaryllis at Lowe’s last week. Such cute packaging! Excellent for gift giving!

 

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GETTING STARTED
You will need: Healthy Bulb (It has been my experience that bigger is better.), Light Potting Soil, Pot 2 – 4″ inches wider than bulb. Or, buy a “kit” that comes with everything you need, making it super easy to get started!

The first thing I do with all indoor bulbs is soak them in Annie’s Moo Poo tea. If you have followed The Garden Diary for a while you know that all plants get their start with me this way. For more on moo poo tea, CLICK HERE. She’s also on Facebook, follow along here.

NOTES:

  • The top of the bulb should show (about a third of it’s height).
  • Soil line should be 1” below rim of the pot to make watering easier.
  • Place in sunny, warm room (65 – 75 degrees)
  • When new growth shows, begin watering whenever the soil is dry.
    • When you water, be careful not to get the part of the bulb that sticks above the soil wet.
  • Turn the pot often toward light to promote balanced growth.
  • When buds are about to open, move to a cooler, darker room to prolong the bloom time.
  • Amaryllis take 6 – 8 weeks to bloom.
  • Tall amaryllis may need staking; we use dowel rods for support.

REBLOOMING

You can keep your amaryllis indefinitely. Here is an article on the “rest and restoration” of your bulb.

ADDING SUPPORT

Most grow very tall and need some support.

Here are the trellises I made last year with sticks and twine to add some decor and support. Confession: I am somewhat of a twine junky.

http://thegardendiary.com/2012/01/01/confessions-of-a-twine-junkie/.

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WHAT ABOUT YOU?

What do you grow in the winter? Maybe you are great at house plants. Me, not so much. For house plants, I go for the bullet proof varieties! Amaryllis are perfect for me. Easy. Rewarding.

Would love to hear about your inside gardening experiences.

Rose Buzz: Companions & Beneficials

Rose Buzz_7_white copyAs gardeners, we learn just how important the right companions are to our plants. Many act as a host to beneficial insects to help combat those who come to destroy! They can also cover up shortcomings when a plant’s beauty begins to fade.

It is the same way for us! We need the companionship of others. They help us grow and learn, but so much more–with the right companions, success is more fun and failure is not so bad.

In a group we can accomplish much more together than we can on our own.

Learn. Grow. Share. Serve. Create Awareness. Celebrate.

As you know, I am a big believer in Social Media! I truly believe social media is shrinking our world and giving us easy access to those who used to be so far away … some even in our own neighborhoods. Our pace of life is often fast and on the go! Multi-tasking has come and gone out of favor more than once.

We are busy.

We are connecting online.

Is it enough?

Of course NOT!

We still need face-to-face.

Much joy is brought to my life by being up close and personal with family, friends and those who share my love of gardening and roses.

JOIN THE FUN.

I am a member of several rose organizations. Two of them are below…

The Indianapolis Rose Society

In this organization I have met some amazing people of all ages. We are all at different stages of the gardening experience and have different passions. Some are into just growing while others with the competitive spirit, enter the most amazing blooms and arrangements in competitions! We have those who use chemicals and others who are all organic.

But it is so much more.

We spend time enjoying all things “rose” together. We learn, we laugh, we celebrate successes and we deal with failures & issues together. It’s not just roses that keep us together, over the years–we have become family.

The American Rose Society

The American Rose Society exists to promote the culture and appreciation of the rose, through education and research to members, to local rose societies and their members and to the public. Read on for more information…

As a member of the ARS, I receive their award-winning magazine and informative newsletters. I have learned about the bigger picture of roses on an international scale! I’ve had the opportunity to attend national conferences where you meet and learn from rose lovers from around world. At these conferences, I have met many rose loving friends who I first “met” online, as well as experts in the field who have become cherished friends.

Exciting Times

Our newly installed ARS President, Pat Shanley, joined us on Rose Chat a few months back to share her dreams and goals for ARS. Take a few minutes and listen to this passionate and energetic leader share her story…HERE.

Yes, growing roses and spending time with my rose companions is very “beneficial” to my health! :)


Feel free to share this post and/or the Rose Buzz graphic to help spread the news!

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Is 2016 your year to join?