BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: May Madness

Well, for the last two weeks I have been “gardening from a fire hose.” For sure. With winter refusing to leave and spring rains turning to spring floods, all the spring chores around here were crammed into the last two weeks. Of course, there is not a real “deadline”, however, I want things to be ready when FIREWORKS and FRAGRANCE season starts and the old roses lead the way in late May.

So with every minute I had, I was planting, pruning, fertilizing and mulching. As of Wednesday of this week, most of those tasks have been crossed off the list. Whew! Just in time to see this beauty take center stage as the first rose to bloom. 

Therese Bugnet (Hybrid Rugosa (Georges Bugnet, Canada, 1941)

If you would like to know more about her or would like to have one in your garden, check out the High Country Roses website HERE.  

So in this flurry of garden activity, I found a place for 24 dahlias.😳 Still a mystery to me how I found enough room. Also found plenty of room to plant cosmos and zinnia seeds. My plan is that they will take up the slack when the roses have to lay low while the Japanese Beetles are on the hunt for them mid-summer. Praying that the JBs do not find Dahlias and Zinnias tasty. Can’t these dreaded creatures just go away! Remember last summer …

ROSE CHAT

If you need some company while you’re weeding, check out the latest podcasts. I’ve been chatting with some great guests. Access list below..

THE HERITAGE ROSE FOUNDATION Rose Chat Podcast

THE HERITAGE ROSE FOUNDATION Peggy Martin   On this episode, Peggy Martin, of the Peggy Martin Rose fame, dons her Heritage Rose Foundation hat, to bring us up to date on all the projects that the foundation is working on. She also shares her favorite roses with us and the exciting news about the new children's book about the Peggy Martin Rose – A Rose Without a Name.     Heritage Rose Foundation website here.   A Rose Without a Name Children's book is available on Amazon here.           ROSE CHAT TEAM:   Executive Producer & On-Air Personality: Chris VanCleave – www.RedneckRosarian.com Creator of the Rose Chat Podcast. Mr. VanCleave is a nationally known rosarian, television personality, speaker and advocate for the rose.   Content Creator & On-Air Personality: Teresa Byington – www.TheGardenDiary.com Co-Host Teresa Byington promotes roses as an integral part of the landscape, as a Consulting Rosarian, Master Gardener, writer, and speaker.   SUBSCRIBE: Subscribe to Rose Chat Podcast Updates: http://bit.ly/subscribeROSE   VISIT OUR SPONSOR: Haven Brand Soil Conditionershttp://www.ManureTea.com/shop
  1. THE HERITAGE ROSE FOUNDATION
  2. 2022 ARTS ROSE TRIAL WINNERS
  3. WHAT’S IN THE BAG? The Dirt on Bagged Potting Media
  4. NEW ROSES AND COMPANION PLANTS
  5. GROWING ROSES IN CONTAINERS

Yes, May Madness is upon us! The garden is filled with excitement. So many roses are budded up and will pop soon! FIREWORKS AND FRAGRANCE to be continued. 

In this time of gardening from a fire hose…. the scripture Psalm 46:10, Be still and know that I am God…. is something I need more than ever. He is the creator of all this beauty we see and I am grateful. 

Have a wonderful week in your garden and I hope you have time to just be… 

BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: ROSES & RAIN

You have most likely heard the phrase “roses love water but they don’t like wet feet.” And that’s true. They do love water but too much and they “drown.” You’ll see the leaves turn yellow and droop!

So how much water do they need? When I first started growing more than just a few roses, one of the most confusing pieces of advice to me was… “roses need 2″ of water per week.” What? How do you know what 2″ of water is? I will confess to doing some odd watering and measuring while I was figuring things out. There are so many factors that play into the “how much” decision. Your soil type, drainage, wind, temperature, and such. 

WHAT I’VE LEARNED

To set them up for success, water regularly, slowly, and deeply. DEEPLY! Deep watering sends those roots down deep where they are more protected from drought and winter weather. 

If you have ever dug up an established rose you know that they have some roots that seem to go to China! I have seen my roses go through periods of drought to the point I thought I would surely lose them but when the rains come and they drink their fill, they resurrect and are good to go again. Remember, Paul Zimmerman is right, “roses are just blooming shrubs.’ 

While we are talking about water… I’ll mention when to do so. Fungal diseases love damp and cool so putting the roses to bed dry goes a long way in keeping them healthy. I try to water early enough in the day that the leaves can dry.

I am not going to have to worry about watering for quite a while. Currently, there is puddling all throughout the garden. 

NEW ROSES!

I received some very happy mail this week. Proven Winners sent 4 roses for me to “test” in my garden. These roses will be coming to garden centers in 2023 or can be purchased online here. I had the pleasure of seeing these roses in bloom at a conference recently making me even more excited to have them in my garden! Fragrance is back!

Rise Up Amberness: A healthy, fragrant rose that can be grown as a shrub or a short climber – up to about out 5′. (2-3 wide and 3-5 tall)

Rise Up Lilac Days: Healthy, exceptionally fragrant rose that can climb up to 8′  Very floriferous.

Ringo Double Pink: Multiple colors on one plant… pink, magenta, and a red center (2 – 3′ Tall and Wide)

Reminiscent Crema: Creamy white, full, lush blooms with old rose fragrance  (2′ x2′)

Rise Up Lilac Days is going in a container on the Potting Shed porch!!

LOCAL FRIENDS…

There are some wonderful events coming up…

PLANT SALE…

Hendricks Co Master Gardener Plant Sale
Tues, May 17, 6 – 8 pm
Hendricks Co Fairgrounds / Cartlidge Barn 

ROSEFEST … a time to bloom

This will be the first Rosefest since the COVID lockdowns. After the past two years, we are all excited to bloom!

This will be a day filled with beautiful roses, rose growing demonstrations, a tour of the HC Master Gardeners’ beautiful rose garden, free roses for first 40 guests, a rose show, and wonderful speakers.

SAT, JUNE 11, 9 am – 3 pm 
HAMILTON CO 4H FAIRGROUNDS (Link)
2003 E PLEASANT STREET
NOBLESVILLE, IN

SPEAKERS:

Diane Sommers
PROGRAM: Rose Classifications … Something for everyone!

Diane Sommers is the current American Rose Society President

Dr. Raymond Cloyd
PROGRAM: Japanese Beetle Management

Dr. Raymond Cloyd of Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS. Professor and Extension Specialist in Horticultural Entomology/Plant Protection.

You can find additional information about ROSEFEST here.



GETTING BACK TO WORK

All the rain has slowed down spring garden work a bit making me extremely happy to know that there is no rain in tomorrow’s forecast… no sun either but I’ll take dry! I need to fertilize the roses and put down mulch! The old garden roses will be blooming before we know it. 🎉🌹💃

Friends, enjoy your time in the garden!

A bit soggy out there!

BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: Rose Reviews

Many local friends have asked for advice on roses they can find close by. As you know many of my roses are modern shrub roses that fall into the easy-care variety so those will be the ones I talk about today.

During this season I keep a watchful eye on local garden centers and box stores to see the roses they have coming in. I wish we could meet up and shop together but since that is not a possibility, here’s what I’m finding…

COUNTRY HARMONY GARDEN CENTER

Country Harmony (in Brownsburg) has a new to me series called NITTY GRITTY ROSES in red, white, yellow, and this fantastic peach rose! These roses grow 3′ x 4′ and bloom through the growing season. Look at this fantastic peach beauty!

From the Monrovia website about this series…

Not just a pretty face, this very durable, own-root, fuss-free groundcover rose produces an abundance of lovely blooms while offering excellent disease resistance and a self-cleaning, easy-to-care for habit. The double blooms provide exquisite color, adding great low-maintenance curb appeal to the landscape. 

TRUE BLOOM SERIES

Four years ago I saw the beautiful roses in the TRUE BLOOM series while attending a National ARS Conference in San Diego. Since then I have been looking forward to seeing them locally. This year Country Harmony has them! So many beautiful ones. 

The TRUE BLOOM roses were hybridized by my great rose friend Ping Lim. You can listen to Ping’s life in roses on the Rose Chat Podcast… HERE.

LOWES

EASY ELEGANCE SERIES

Many of my favorite roses come from the EASY ELEGANCE series, Music Box, My Girl, Calypso, and Champagne Wishes. However, I think any that you chose in this series would be a good choice. 

PETIT PRINCE

For several years I have been hearing about this wonderful rose from my good friend, Paul Zimmerman. I decided this was the year to search for it and add it to my garden. GUESS WHAT… Lowes made my job easy… they have it and for $14.97…  Yes, I bought 3. THE FRAGRANCE IS OUT OF THIS WORLD! Truly strong old rose fragrance. The size is 4.5′ W  X 4′ H.

Here’s a quote from the man himself… could you resist??

“Petit Prince is simply put an astonishing rose. It first came to me at my former nursery Ashdown Roses from Arnaud Delbard to introduce into the United States. I have had a grouping of 8-10 bushes in my garden for the last 15 years. It has the great fragrance of the mauve roses with none of the diebacks. It is one of the most disease resistant roses in my no spray garden in the upstate of South Carolina. Even in summer when other roses defoliate this one does not. The dark, glossy green foliage remains unfazed. The blooms are a beautiful mauve with a perfume that can be smelled from 10’ away. This is a rose no garden should be without. Hardy to zone 5. – Paul Zimmerman

See Petit Prince growing in Paul’s garden below…

LAVENDER CRUSH CLIMBER

A new to me fragrant climber that looks promising is LAVENDER CRUSH. Lavender, climber and fragrance in the same description = SOLD. I only brought one home. Not a big investment at $14.95.

SOL DESIRE

If you walk into Lowes soon this one is in full bloom and will get your attention! 

I talked with Tyler of Certified Roses today and he says this rose, along with the others I mentioned should do very well in our Zone 5b garden. 

SEASON TO SEASON BRAND

This label was new to me so I did a bit of investigation and found this is another company from the great folks at J Berry Nursery who I am very familiar! 👍🏻

OSO EASY URBAN LEGEND

This pretty PROVEN WINNER groundcover rose has been almost bulletproof in my garden. I even planted it in semi-shade! 

Well, that’s all for now. I have 4 roses coming from Proven Winners in the next day or two. We’ll talk about those next week.

Happy gardening and garden shopping! 🛒

Let me know what you find for your garden!

Love from my Bleeding Heart and me. ❤️

BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: Blossom by Blossom


Blossom by blossom the Spring begins.
Algernon Charles Swinburne

I don’t know about where you are, but around here Spring is having an identity crisis. We are having such extreme ups and downs and so much rain. But with it all, Spring is still very welcome. I give Spring a lot of grace just because it is NOT WINTER.

The above quote is just perfect I think. Every day as I walk in the garden I see something new. All signs of life. Just a perfect setting to lead us up to Easter and a time when we celebrate the sacrifice Jesus made to bring us eternal life.

DAFFODILS

Daffodils are my favorite spring bulb. They sure make a difference in the spring garden. Even though I love them, I go slowly when it comes to planting them as I don’t want their messy leaves still around when the roses are getting started! I certainly get creative about where to put them. But oh how wonderful it is to see them when they come. 

For containers, I buy the mini starter pots at Lowes and Walmart. Usually, Tete de Tetes are the mini daffodils used. But this year the ones I bought from Walmart were different than the ones I bought from Lowes – and I liked them much better! With a little investigation, I found out that this “new” mini daffodil was a sport of Tete de Tete — Tete Boucle. Boucle is the French word for loop. Ms Boucle was not only gorgeous but she also did very well in a vase. 

On Social Media Paul Zimmerman introduced me to another daffodil that I am on the hunt for — Yosemite Valley. Have you seen this one? Oh my word! GORGEOUS! I have found the perfect spot for more daffodils and I hope these will be the ones! So far, I have not found a supplier. If you see them for sale, let me know!

YEAR OF THE GLADIOLUS

The National Garden Bureau has named 2022 as the year of the Gladiolus. I am thrilled. I love this old-fashioned beauty. I know they fell out of favor except for “funeral” flowers for a time but I am “glad” to report they are coming back!

Some fun facts from the Garden Bureau:

  • The gladiolus bulb is actually a corm.
  • They are part of the iris family.
  • The original varieties existed naturally in South Africa.
  • Gladiolus owe their botanical name to the Latin word gladius, which means sword.

Some growing tips…

  1. Gladiolus should be grown in well-drained soil and full sun.
  2. You can grow them in a cutting garden, add them to your perennial garden, grow them in raised beds or containers, or plant the corms in your vegetable garden.
  3. Before planting, prepare the soil by loosening the planting area to a depth of 6 to 10”. Adding compost and an all-purpose granular fertilizer will help your glads reach their full potential.
  4. You can expect the flowers to begin opening 80-90 days after planting. To extend the bloom time, don’t plant all the corms at once. Plant the first batch in spring after all danger of frost has passed. Plant additional corms every week or two until early summer (about 90 days before the first fall frost).
  5. Plant grandiflora types 6 to 8” deep. Planting deeper helps keep the stems upright. Dwarf glads should be planted 4 to 6” deep. Space the corms 4 to 6” apart on center. Use the closer spacing if you plan to cut most of the stems before they are fully open.
  6. Water regularly and deeply, especially during dry spells. When plants are stressed by heat and drought, they become more susceptible to pests and disease. Applying 2 to 3” of mulch after planting will help retain moisture and control weeds.

To read more from the Garden Bureau on growing these garden beauties … head over to the Garden Bureau site HERE.

There are so many varieties at the garden centers and box stores right now. So far I have purchased 3 different varieties that I plan to work in groupings together…

Rose Chat Spring Fling:

Last week we released the first in the 4-part spring fling series…

ROSE PEST & DISEASE CONTROL … without the “hard” stuff
Jason Croutch of Fraser Valley Rose Farm

On this episode, Jason Croutch, owner of Fraser Valley Rose Farm, shares his rose growing philosophy and gives us tips on managing rose pests and diseases without using “the hard stuff.” Listen in for so many great rose care ideas plus stories behind his very popular YouTube Channel. You might just need a pen and paper for this one! 

LISTEN HERE.

Next in the series…

Potting Shed Putterings

Tomatoes have germinated in record time. Mr. G is very happy. Since I started them later than I usually do, he was getting a bit anxious about it! So far everyone is doing well. Fungus gnats seem to be fewer and more under control – hopefully! Although I am certainly creating their ideal habitat! 

Holy Week

This Sunday starts Holy week for Christians. From Jesus’ triumphant entry, to his death on the cross and resurrection. The images from Mel Gibson’s movie The Passion are forever etched into my mind. We will rewatch on Good Friday. Such love is hard to comprehend. But he calls us to the same… 

“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you are also to love one another.” –John 13:34

If you’d like to read more about the events of this special week … read on here

Friends, I wish you a beautiful, love-filled week. 

BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: IT CAME JUST THE SAME

Yes, It Came Just the Same!

In the HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS when all could have been lost, we read, “Without any presents at all! He HADN’T stopped Christmas from coming! IT CAME! Somehow or other, it came just the same!”

Even with freezing temps and crazy amounts of snow in places where it was highly unlikely and highly unwelcome, on March 20 Spring came just the same. Bringing with it wind, rain, and in some places snow! But regardless of the weather, spring brought hope for rebirth that we see more and more each day. 

I don’t know the name, but I think this may be my fav crocus ever.

SPRING SIGNS

On my daily commute to the office (AKA Potting Shed), I am seeing things that bring incredible joy. 

MEMORY LANE

This winter I kept thinking about a rose I grew many years ago and lost to a particularly bad winter – Fragrant Cloud. It was as though I could actually smell the sweet fragrance in my memory.

Guess what I found at Lowes for $10… a bareroot Fragrant Cloud! I’m going to put it in a container, give it lots of love and wait for the blooms. Do you think the fragrance will be as good as my memory? I’m excited to find out. Do you grow this one?

I am trying to keep this rose dormant a bit longer but it is ready to party now!

ONE MORE

I promise this will be the last Dahlia I buy in 2022. 🙄 🤞🏻 I went for a beautiful spring “walk” through one of my very favorite local Garden Centers, COUNTRY HARMONY. Guess what? They had dahlias. And, they had this one! Soooooo different than any of the others! 

Thomas A. Edison

ROSE CHAT SPRING FLING

Each Sunday in April we will release a new podcast I think you will enjoy! It is an outstanding lineup! Check them out HERE. https://rosechat.podbean.com

WHAT A DREAM SPRING TEAM!

Speaking of podcast guests… A recent guest, Dr. A (Allan Armitage) is having a Facebook LIVE WalkAbout in his garden tomorrow (March 26). He’ll be showing us what’s going on in his spring garden “warts and all.” I know we will learn and we WILL laugh. 

POTTING SHED PUTTERINGS

Things are green and growing in the Potting Shed. 

✅ The Dahlias tubers I planted have certainly exceeded my expectations and are going to need more space than I first thought. How will I keep them happy until mid-May??? Probably started these just a few weeks too early. 😉

✅ I potted up the Dahlias I started from seed! (Unwin Bedding Dahlias) Seriously, I NEVER tire of this process. Seeing seeds germinate and watching roots form – I feel allows us to be part of the miraculous. Are you growing anything from seed this year?

✅ The Lisianthus are slowly getting bigger every day. 

Dahlias in front / Lisianthus in back

✅ Strawflowers are beginning to sprout. 

✅ The seeds I “winter sowed” in milk jugs are coming along.

✅ Next week I’ll start Mr. G tomatoes inside and sweet peas plus a few other cool season flowers outside. 

Yes, much is going well in the Potting Shed with one exception…. fungus gnats. I’m treating them with a solution made with Mosquito Bits and using “sticky tape” flowers. But so far they seem to be enjoying it all. 🙄 How do you deal with them?

Yes, spring came just the same! Let’s roll up our sleeves and enjoy regardless of what the weatherman is predicting! And here the outlook is … well let’s just say I’m gonna need a good amount of red lipstick. 💄

Happy Spring Friends!

BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: Marching into March

I have been away for a few days. I have seen beautiful things. I have been with beautiful people. I am refreshed. I am now very ready for spring. And with the weather we are having, I am tempted to do too much. High temps one day and low temps the next. There’s much to be said about March … In like a lion … out like a lamb. Yes, March is a jam-packed month… Calling us to spring forward, participate in March Madness (Indiana), beware the ides, don our green for St. Patrick, and usher in SPRING! 💐

BOOK GIVEAWAY 

On March 1st the winner of the GARDEN MAKER by Christie Purifoy was selected. Sherry Lewis, our winner, will be receiving her new book soon. Congratulations Sherry!

Thank you to all of you who shared your favorite book both on social media and the blog. I wish I could send each of you a copy of this delightful book. If you are interested, you can read more about it or purchase here. 

BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS

We are all winners with the great book ideas that came in! Several of you had the same favorites! Over the next few weeks, I will share some of the books you recommended.

TASHA TUDOR

Several mentioned Tasha Tudor books. Tasha is a very favorite of mine. She certainly lived life her way and inspired us with her journey. Although she was born in 1915, she chose to live a lifestyle of the early 1800s. Her garden is a legendary work of cottage garden art. These books are in short supply so best to buy them as used books. Often they can often be found on Amazon reasonably. If currently available, I provided a link. 

Tasha Tudor’s Garden by Tovah Martin

The Private World of Tasha Tudor by Richard Brown

The Tasha Tudor Cookbook by Tasha Tudor

ANOTHER RECOMMENDATION…

Empress of the Garden by Michael Shoup (Owner of Antique Rose Emporium)

Jolene Angelos shared…  “This is a very large book filled with beautiful photos, interesting facts, and histories of an array of roses.” 

I don’t have this particular book but I do have Mike’s book on Landscaping with Antique Roses and it is fabulous.  Link here.

ABOUT MIKE SHOUP

Mike Shoup has a deep and profound love of the rose. We chatted about his fascinating rose story on Rose Chat last year. I just love to hear him talk about roses! Did you know he did a Ted Talk about his rose story? I think you would enjoy the podcast!

ROSE CHAT PODCAST

ROSES THE ULTIMATE GARDEN PLANT with Mike Shoup

In this episode, Mike Shoup, author of several books and creator of the Antique Rose Emporium, takes us on a creative journey with roses and gives us their history and the ways they complement every garden. You can listen here.

POTTING SHED PUTTERINGS

As you know, I have several dahlias on order but I found 2 packs of Dahlia tubers at WalMart and 1 pack at Lowes that I couldn’t resist. They are potted up and doing very well. I couldn’t believe how quickly they sprouted. I also potted up one that I wintered over but so far no sprouts. I have much to learn about the overwintering process.

The Lisianthus I started a few weeks back were big enough this week to move up into individual pots. Look at those roots – even on the tiny ones. Fingers crossed these all make it through the rest of the seedling processes!

I also have a new plant I am very excited about… an Easter cactus. I picked it up at a favorite local garden center, Country Harmony. There were so many beautiful plants there!

Easter Cactus… the blooms are just stuning

Friends, wherever you are I hope your days are filled with sunshine and all the excitement that March can bring to a gardener! We are on the home stretch now. SPRING IS SPRINGING!!

🌱🌸🌱💐🌱🌼🌱

Love this!

BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: SOWING, BOOKS, AND A GIVEAWAY

Winter sowing has finally begun. Probably, like you, February is a month where my plans for the garden and the reality of summertime and energy clash.

Starting seeds inside under grow lights is extremely fun for me but, there is a lot of time between start to finish on that process and the end of that process gets a little tricky and requires the gardener to be very engaged.

So, in comes winter sowing! Seriously, it is a very easy and economical way to get a ton of seedlings up and ready for planting with minimal work for the gardener. Last year was the first time I tried it although so many of my fellow master gardeners raved about the process! At first, I was concerned that my garden would look “unsightly” with all those water jugs strewn about. But this year I am embracing the milk jug garden art even more than last year. Every time I see them I am giddy with anticipation of what is to come. If you’d like to know more about the Winter Sowing Method and what I did last year, read on here.

My cutting garden is the main focus of winter sowing. The cutting garden is a raised bed directly behind the herb garden that will be home to the dahlias I chatted about last week. In my “winter gardener’s dream state,” I see hundreds and hundreds of blooms to pick! Oh, did I forget to mention the zinnias? Well, I think they are getting a new space so there’s more room for them to be their best selves. 

IN THE WATER JUGS ARE…

  • Lavender
  • Bachelor Buttons
  • Candytuft
  • Delphinium
  • Daucus
  • Scabiosa
  • Verbena
  • Orlaya 
  • Nicotiana
  • Larkspur
  • Phacelia
  • Poppies
  • Foxgloves

If these all do well, I’ll have enough for the cutting garden and to add to the borders! A bit later in the season, I am going to try sowing tomatoes using this method. 

Potting day process looks like this…

In other potting shed news, the basil and Lisianthus seeds are up and looking sooo sooo cute. 

REALITY CHECK: CRITTERS (or varmints as my dad would say)

We’ve talked about how all the critters from miles around showed up to have lunch – regularly. I have Mr. G working on some sort of easy to move around fencing so that my babies will have a better chance of survival against the cats, groundhogs, raccoons, o’possums, rabbits and deer. Yes, our critter cam caught all of them munching on my babies last year or in the case of the cats … having way too much fun scratching around – if you know what I mean. 😏

I also purchased several mesh wire wastebaskets (Link) to use as cloches for protecting small plants. I know my parsley will need extra help and the Daucus. Everyone loves anything in the carrot family!

BOOKS AND GARDENING

This quote says, “if you have a garden and library you have everything you need”. Well, that is isn’t quite true for me, however, books are a huge part of my gardening experience. 

In January I pull out some of my favorite books where the author takes a month-by-month approach. The best one is Rosemary Verey’s, A Country Woman’s Year. When I read her words, I am transformed to her time and place. And want to be where she is and meet who she meets and see what she sees.

Rosesmary’s words from “FEBRUARY”…

Philip Miller, gardener to the Worshipful Company of Apothecaries at the Botanic Garden at Chelsea, wrote in 1732 that December was the darkest month of the whole year. Adding up the hours of darkness I am sure he must be right but for me February is the most dreary month. We are almost at the end of the tunnel and perhaps it is the accumulation of dark days that do their best to get me down. Luckily they do not succeed as there are wonderful promises to come. Yesterday as I drove down Welch Way, a 200 year old lane near our village, I got out of my car to examine the nut trees. They grow on each side of the lane making a wonderful canopy, joining hands in the middle. At night, headlights full on, you feel as though you are driving through a magic tunnel.


Okay, who wants to join me for a trip to see the nut trees? 


Another author who has the ability to transform me with her words is Christie Purifoy

GARDEN MAKER … Growing a Life of Beauty & Wonder with Flowers

I liken her new book to walking at daybreak in the morning fog, coffee in hand to take in all the nuances of the quiet garden. Few things are more enchanting to me than foggy mornings. Christie’s book is filled with all the feels of an enchanting morning stroll with a friend where there’s endless time for garden talk.

BOOK GIVEAWAY

Garden friends, I would love to give one of you a copy of Christie’s book. Actually, I’d like to give all of you a copy but of course, I can’t do that. All you have to do to be added to the drawing is leave a comment below and share a favorite garden book. Deadline March 1. (US addresses only.)

A SNEAK PEEK INSIDE…

Friends, have a wonderful week, and don’t forget to leave a comment about your favorite book! Happy Valentine’s Day.

BLOOM THYME FRIDAY: FRESH AND NEW

As predicted we have snow – around 14″ of snow! It is the fluffy, packing kind of snow that leaves your world looking all fresh and new! Driving in it is another story!

The view behind the amaryllis changed a lot in one day!

LEARNING SOMETHING NEW

February is the best time to get familiar with the new plants and seeds that I have on order. It’s easy to fall in love with the pictures! 😳 But, eventually I have to do something with them! 🤣

This week is was the dahlias. These beauties have always caught my interest, but spending time in England and following so many English gardeners online – has taken my interest to an all-time high! And, they are such good companions for roses. I love adding them to rose bokays!

I’ve grown a few here and there but there are many gaps in my knowledge about them… so this week armed with two new books, I’m filling some gaps.

Dahlias in my garden 2020

DISCOVERING DAHLIAS by Erin Benzakein of Floret Farms

This book is just amazing if only for the photography and the inspiration that Erin gives. Erin leaves nothing out. She beautifully takes you from … understanding dahlias, to their care and overwintering and onto designing with dahlias and ends with a fabulous “variety finder” to help you choose dahlias for your garden. I particularly enjoyed looking to see if Erin reviewed the ones I bought. Truth be told if I read Erin’s book before purchasing, I probably would have ordered differently based on her recommendations. Erin’s book is truly wonderful. I just checked availability on Amazon and it has been marked down. Check Amazon… here. A great value!!

CONNIE’S DAHLIAS … A Beginner’s Guide by Connie Thompson

Connie and her husband own a small commercial dahlia farm on Vancouver Island, BC.

Connie shares all the basics as she goes through the seasons. She also has practical information and helpful information in identifying and dealing with in pests and diseases.

As I make my way through these books I am learning so much. I find it very funny that these two dahlia experts live less than 2 hours from each other. Ooooo that pacific NW has great growing power and it’s not just dahlias. 

A NEW WAY

I bought these books through my iBook app. While I love REAL books and will continue to buy them, I am using the E resource more and more. Having these resources on iBooks puts them on all my apple devices and at my fingertips. They look fabulous on my mac laptop! That high resolution pays off! Other great features about ebooks … highlighting, note-taking, references, and magnification when needed! Don’t judge me but I have Erin’s book in printed form too. It is such a pretty book!

NEW DAHLIAS FOR 2022

Here are the latest lists.

SWAN ISLAND DAHLIAS

  • Bliss
  • Charlotte Mae
  • Day Dreamer
  • Frank Holmes
  • Sheer Heaven
  • Cafe Au Lait (Did not do that great for me last year so trying again.)
  • Black Satin (Swan Lake added this one to my order as a gift.)
Bliss from Swan Island Website

Longfield Gardens  

  • Milena (have grown this before and loved it)
  • Break Out (I grew one in a pot a few years ago and LOVED it.)
  • Cafe au Lait 
  • Creme de Cognac

I have last year’s dahlias that came from a mixed bag at Lowes, over-wintering in the garage, but I don’t have much confidence in my ability to make this happen. I did look at them this week and they didn’t look shriveled up or anything. Since the tubers aren’t cheap, it sure would be nice to master the over-wintering process. Time will tell. 

WHERE TO PUT THEM

My garden certainly has an overcrowding problem. So the first thing I did was search for a place. Of course, I could always put them in random places around the garden. but, I really wanted most of them to be planted together for impact! ⭐️ As you know I changed up my herb garden last year leaving walking room around all the raised beds!!! When measuring the space I had left for walking room in the back of the herb garden … I realized it was the perfect size and place for most of the dahlias. Less walking room, yes – but I knew it wouldn’t last! 🙄🤣 The ground is good there and this should be a really good spot for them! #fingerscrossed 

NEW ROSECHAT PODCAST

RAMBLINGS WITH DER ROSENMEISTER
LEON GINENTHAL

Leon and I met several years ago in Syracuse, NY at the wonderful ARS convention. I love Leon’s rose story. Leon is a remarkable gardener and self-professed horticulture nerd. I think you’ll love this podcast for all the rose information and inspiration, but there is so much more! LISTEN HERE… 

On the podcast player below you can choose Leon’s episode on one from the recent listing…

THE HERITAGE ROSE FOUNDATION Rose Chat Podcast

THE HERITAGE ROSE FOUNDATION Peggy Martin   On this episode, Peggy Martin, of the Peggy Martin Rose fame, dons her Heritage Rose Foundation hat, to bring us up to date on all the projects that the foundation is working on. She also shares her favorite roses with us and the exciting news about the new children's book about the Peggy Martin Rose – A Rose Without a Name.     Heritage Rose Foundation website here.   A Rose Without a Name Children's book is available on Amazon here.           ROSE CHAT TEAM:   Executive Producer & On-Air Personality: Chris VanCleave – www.RedneckRosarian.com Creator of the Rose Chat Podcast. Mr. VanCleave is a nationally known rosarian, television personality, speaker and advocate for the rose.   Content Creator & On-Air Personality: Teresa Byington – www.TheGardenDiary.com Co-Host Teresa Byington promotes roses as an integral part of the landscape, as a Consulting Rosarian, Master Gardener, writer, and speaker.   SUBSCRIBE: Subscribe to Rose Chat Podcast Updates: http://bit.ly/subscribeROSE   VISIT OUR SPONSOR: Haven Brand Soil Conditionershttp://www.ManureTea.com/shop
  1. THE HERITAGE ROSE FOUNDATION
  2. 2022 ARTS ROSE TRIAL WINNERS
  3. WHAT’S IN THE BAG? The Dirt on Bagged Potting Media
  4. NEW ROSES AND COMPANION PLANTS
  5. GROWING ROSES IN CONTAINERS


Break Out Dahlia from Longfield Garden’s Website

Friends, hope you are safe and warm and have enough garden planning going on to make you think spring. It’s coming! 43 days!

Bloom Thyme Friday: Waiting

Who’s good at waiting? Pardon me while I do NOT rush to raise my hand. Is there an emoji for that?? Well this one will work… 👎🏻

I’m not sure if my kids still remember much about the great stuff “we” learned from Mr. Rogers when they were little, but I sure haven’t forgotten many of them. During January we certainly find ourselves playing the waiting game on some of the fun things we want to do. It’s just a little too early for me to start filling the winter jugs with seeds or to start very many seeds. So I hum “Let’s think of something to do while we are waiting.” If you want to go down memory lane or need a pep talk on waiting, here is the man himself… LINK The link takes you to Fred Roger’s Facebook page… Good stuff!! Do you have a fav tune from “the neighborhood” ?

Seriously, I have plenty to do! I am still deep into going through the potting shed and deciding what I really need in there. This task is not easy as I want to toss everything because of the over crowding problem I have in the winter time. But my topiaries and other cuttings sure deserve their safe space even if it is less than the acceptible amount of “personal space” that is typically needed.

LISTS AND MORE LISTS

Yes, I am still organizing seeds and seed starting supplies. And making plans! And I did start a few seeds… Lisianthus seeds. (Voyage 2 BLue from Johnny’s.) They take a very long time to germinate and grow. The blooms are just the best in arrangements but they are known for making us wait a very long time for them. ⏳

For the first time I have made a list of everything I’m growing from seed and when it needs to be planted whether inside or out.💥This is going to be so helpful to me! Once the craziness starts I won’t have to think about it!

ROSE LIST

I am also updating my comprehensive list of roses. Who I have, how it did last year and any special things they might need this year.

And, I’m looking to see who needs a neighbor – yes I have roses coming that I am not sure where they are doing to fit. 🙄 🌹

These tasks are surely bolstered by looking at pictures from last year. They spur me on!

CRITTERS

Mr. G and I are working on our plan of attack for the critters we know will come. I think we are going to put up some temporary fencing around our raised beds so the baby plants have a chance from the cats, squirrels, ground hogs, opossums, raccoons and deer. Yes, last year we had them all! They all “smiled” for the critter cam! I’ve also purchased some all mesh trash cans that will work well as protective cloches for some individual plants.

Obviously critters are a problem for many — yesterday the Gardener’s Supply catalog came and there were so many pages dedicated to critter and frost protection! Some excellent solutions!

JOURNALING

I think record keeping is very important! Last year I had a “fancy” garden journal. Beautiful cover, cute illustrations, prompts for what to write about, calendar spaces, and stickers. It was great but I found I didn’t write in it as much as I should have. So this year I am going old school with a pencil and a plain brown notebook and I’m writing each day. Last year’s journal is being used as a prompt for the kind of info I do want to jot down and just for “pretty.” I love looking at it and it is a good record for the times I did write.  And, I bought stickers! 

ROSE SALE

If you are local, the Indianapolis Rose Society is having their annual sale. The roses we sell come potted and ready to bloom! In the past the plants have been some of the best I have ever seen. I keep hearing that roses are hard to come by for some so if you are interested…

INDIANAPOLIS ROSE SOCIETY ROSE SALE

As in the past, the roses will be available on a FIRST COME / FIRST SERVE basis, so don’t delay!
VIEW THE ROSE LIST FROM LINK BELOW…2022 IRS Rose Sale w_ final Substitutions FINALVIEW
To place orders or to get more information, contact us here.

PRICES…

IRS MEMBERS:David Austin: $33
All Other Roses: $28

NON MEMBERS:David Austin: $38
All Other Roses: $33

PAYMENT: Roses must be pre-paid. Contact us to make payment arrangements HERE.
PICKUP: Pickup will be sometime in April. Exact day/time/location to be determined at a later date

If you are interested in society membership, read on here.


UPCOMING PROGRAM ON CLIMBING ROSES

The Indianapolis Rose Society welcomes Bill Kozemchak to talk about climbing roses. This is a Zoom meeting so I hope you can attend! For all the details, read on here

HOUSEPLANTS FOR THE WIN

This time of year I do love to care for my houseplants. I will confess they get little of me the most of the time. This week my amaryllis is a show stopper and the orchid is primed and ready to bloom. Last year it bloomed for 5 months! I am starting a few things from cuttings and all’s right with the world when I have a sprig of something in water.

So if you need me, I’ll probably be drinking cofee, making lists and dreaming of warmer days.