Bloom Thyme Friday: Easy Elegance

All the beauty, none of the work!

That is the way Ping Lim describes his EASY ELEGANCE line of roses. Ping Lim, the renown hybridizer, has a line of beautiful, easy care roses that has been getting a lot of attention. I’ve been thinking about adding some for the last couple of years.

Last weekend while at Lowes, I noticed they had a very large selection of EASY ELEGANCE roses and I never remember their having very many of them before, so I took that as a sign that this was the time to try them. Wouldn’t you think the same thing????? I know what you are thinking, I am very easy to persuade when it comes to roses and you are right. 🙂 My rose society also has some of the Easy Elegance roses for sale at a very reasonable price, so I have stocked up!

Here are the ones I bought: Music Box, All The Rage, High Voltage, Sunrise Sunset & Sweet Fragrance.

ADDED BONUS: This is the first rose collection to offer a 2-year homeowner guarantee to show how confident they are in their roses. You can read more about these roses here… http://www.easyelegancerose.com/

I am very excited to see how these roses do in my garden!

I’ll keep you posted!!

Sweet Fragrance
Sweet Fragrance
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Sunrise Sunset
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All The Rage
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High Voltage
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Music Box
Ping Lim
Ping Lim

Bloom Thyme Friday

Happy Bloom Thyme Friday!

David Austin Enchantment Continues

I am putting in another David Austin bed this year. I know. I know. This is not a big surprise, but aren’t you just a little curious about which ones I chose to plant in the new bed? There are hundreds of beauties to choose from and they’re all beautiful.

Boscobel
Boscobel

What David Austin Says:
Boscobel’ bears beautifully formed flowers of rich salmon colouring. They commence as red buds which open at first to pretty cups, gradually developing into perfectly formed blooms of classic rosette formation. The numerous small petals are of varying shades, mingling to provide a most pleasing effect.

Why I Chose: Michael Marriott of David Austin said it was amazing. He has never steered me wrong. Rose Chat interview with Michael … here.

Golden Celebrations
Golden Celebrations

What David Austin Says: This is one of the largest-flowered and most magnificent of our English Roses. Its color is rich golden yellow and the flowers are in the form of a giant, full-petalled cup. It has excellent shapely growth, forming a nicely rounded, slightly arching shrub with ample foliage. It is very reliable and easy to grow. An ideal rose to mark any celebration or important event.

Why I Chose: I have succumbed once again to rose envy. All the pictures on Facebook and Twitter made this decision for me.

The Generouos Gardener

The Generous Gardener

What David Austin Says: A rose of delicate charm – its flowers being beautifully formed; their color a soft glowing pink at the center, shading to palest pink on the outer petals. When the petals open they expose numerous stamens, providing an almost water lily-like effect. It has strong, elegantly arching growth with polished dark green foliage. This rose would produce a wonderful effect towards the back of the border. It will also make an excellent climber.

Why: It was a wonderful Christmas gift!

The Ingeniouso Mr. Fairchild

The Ingenious Mr. Fairchild

What David Austin Says: The flowers are in the form of deep cups filled with crisp, upstanding petals – similar to those of peonies. The colour on the inside of the petals is a deep pink touched with lilac; the outside is of a paler shade. Looking at the bloom in more detail, one can see that the edges are an even deeper pink, giving a most delightful fringed effect – particularly in the earlier stages.

The growth is ideal with spreading, arching branches building up into a well-rounded, mounding shrub; its flowers nicely poised on its branches. It is very healthy and harmonises beautifully with other plants and perennials in a mixed border.

Why: This is another wonderful Christmas gift. Someone loves me.

Darcey Bussell

Darcey Bussell

What David Austin says: Its beautiful flowers are produced freely and with excellent continuity. When young, their outer petals form a perfect ring around an inner cup; gradually opening out to form a perfect rosette. The color is a deep rich crimson that takes on a tinge of mauve just before the petals drop.

Why I Chose: Big winner at the Biltmore Trial. And, did you notice the color?? Basically, I just couldn’t live without it. 🙂

Do you grow David Austin roses? Have a favorite?

Here is a favorite David Austin from last summer…

Charlotte

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David Austin Gardens
To see a video of the beautiful David Austin gardens read on.

Getting the year started off right…

My family and friends are helping me get the new gardening year started off right! Take a look at some of the wonderful gifts I’ve recently received….

HOG WASH: “Perfect Scrub for Mechanics, Gardeners and Kids”
That just about covers my garden experiences!

ROSE JAM SHOWER GEL: “Sweet, tart and wonderfully fresh, this indulgent blend of rose, vanilla and lemon leaves you smelling of a rose garden and nourishing argan oil gets skin gorgeously soft.” Don’t you love the sound of that?

HELPING HANDS HAND CREAM: “A nurturing almond, cocoa butter and chamomile hand cream to give back what life has taken out.” Sounds good enough to eat.

GIFT CERTIFICATES FOR 2 DAVID AUSTIN ROSES: The Generous Gardener and The Ingenious Mr. Fairchild. I am over the moon about these.

BARNEL PRUNERS: Wendy Tilley highly recommends.

BIONIC ROSE GLOVES: Recommended by Chris VanCleave and Wendy Tilly

CLASSIC HAND TOOL SET: from Flexrake …. beautiful!

ROBERTS DISTILLATA ALLE: A rose tonic that the Florentine women of 1867 just wouldn’t be without— need I say more!

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IMG_7753.JPGGifts 5 Gifts 3 Gifts 2Spring, bring it! I am armed and ready!

Blurring the Lines

At our house we like to blur the lines between inside and outside as much as possible. No we don’t have terra ferma for floors … yet. Did I just say that. Let’s just keep that between us. Mr. G need not know.

Today is one of those rare days in Indiana where it is sunny and even though it is 34 degrees, to me it feels like 70 and I just have to be outside! So, I spent the day “decorating” outside. Through the long winter months I love to look outside my window and see pretty things!

I’ve been on a scavenger hunt today to find things in the garden to add to the vignettes we will enjoy out our windows through the long Indiana winter…

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Treat for the hard-working gardener. ; )
Treat for the hard-working gardener. ; )

Some things are more important than breakfast…

Recently we had the pleasure of visiting the Biltmore rose garden. We arrived in Asheville on Friday evening too late to go to the garden, but that was okay with me because I wanted to see the rose garden in the early morning!

I was up really E A R L Y and chose to forgo breakfast so I could be the first visitor to the garden. This meant Mr. G was going to forgo or at least delay breakfast too so he could deliver me to my destination.

When we got to the edge of the garden I practically jumped out of the car. Shaking his head, Mr. G headed off to park the car. This is not his first time to be a part of something like this. 🙂

It worked! I was first on that a misty late summer morning! And, I was greeted with much fanfare by the bees, hummingbirds and gold finches–just the way I like it!

A beautiful start to a wonderful day…

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The Biltmore rose garden is completely surrounded by a tall stone fence and the setting will just take your breath away.

Enchanting...
Enchanting…

This garden is one of America’s finest rose gardens but gives you a truly international experience…  of the 1400 roses, there are roses that were grown at the end of the 19th century plus many of the modern varieties. There are lovely English borders complete with David Austin English roses like Molineux and Princess Anne; Pink Pet China Roses; roses with French names like Monsieur Tiller to compliment the 250 room chateau–and then there are the American hybrids Blush and Champney’s Pink Noisettes—even though they don’t sound American. For the scoop on Noisette Roses, read an interview with P. Allen Smith here.

Noisettes...
Noisettes…

IMG_4932LUCAS JACK:
BILTMORE  ROSARIAN AND HORICULTURALIST

This beautiful garden design and all of these rose varieties work together beautifully under the watchful care of Lucas Jack and his team of staff and volunteers. Lucas’ expertise and enthusiasm is a winning combination.

We had the pleasure of a personal tour by Lucas. He shared stories of their commitment to historical research in choices of plants for the garden and garden structures, how he keeps the plants healthy as well as his plans for the future. We are in the process of scheduling his next visit to ROSE CHAT, so you can hear all the details from him too.

If you missed Lucas on Rose Chat Radio in July …. LISTEN HERE. You don’t want to miss Lucas’ chatting about his advice for the next generation of gardeners as well as discussing good growing practices and companion planting for roses.

Pomponella....
Pomponella….
Flamenco... from Peter Beale's Roses
Flamenco… from Peter Beale’s Roses
David Austin's Moulenix
David Austin’s Moulenix
Monsieur Tillier...
Monsieur Tillier…
Stokes Hybrid Teas...
Stokes Hybrid Teas…
Mike Athy's pink rose ... very fragrant!
Mike Athy’s pink rose … very fragrant!

INTERNATIONAL ROSE TRIALS

Another highlight of the visit was to see the rose trial roses. Since 2011 this garden has been home to the Biltmore International Rose Trials. During this time, more than 75 varieties from growers and breeders worldwide have been planted and cared for by Biltmore’s horticulture team. Each trial lasts two years and a permanent jury judges the roses four times per year. One of the big winners in May was Mike Athy’s rose, Athy Fa La. Truly a stunning and disease resistant rose…

Mike Athy's Athy Fa La
Mike Athy’s Athy Fa La

For more information about the rose trial winners, read on.

HAVE YOU BEEN TO THE BILTMORE?

There is so much to see and experience at the Biltmore. The house, the grounds, the mountains, the conservatory ……. the rose garden!!

Biltmore Conservatory...
Biltmore Conservatory…
Thanks Lucas for a lovely day in the garden!
Thanks Lucas for a lovely day in your enchanting garden!

Rose Companions: Zinnias

I have always loved Zinnias–they are such  good companions for roses! However, this year I was given State Fair Zinnias from my friend, Ron Daniels, and the only word that comes to mind is WOW. The hotter and drier it gets, the more these beauties bloom and bloom and bloom.

These lovelies are wonderful in arrangements as they just last and last in a vase!

A big bang for your buck! See…

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State Fair Zinnias ... THANKS RON!
State Fair Zinnias … THANKS RON!

Bloom Thyme Friday

This week most of the roses are taking a break and getting ready for another big flush giving many of the perennials and annuals their “time to shine!” And they are going for it…

See what I mean…

The vines of the Morning Glory have been climbing and twirling around for some time, but this morning the first bloom emerged. Worth the wait!

Morning Glory
Morning Glory

This little bird bath is one of my favorite garden ornaments. It has been in my garden for nearly 20 years. Each year I surround it with something pretty. This is one of the best combinations yet–petunias and euphorbia. What do you think?

Little birds and company...
Little birds and company…

The Pinkie Winkie Hydrangeas are in full bloom … almost to the point of outgrowing their space. Love them! Do you grow this variety? I would highly recommend!

Pinkie Winkie Hydrangeas on the right side...
Pinkie Winkie Hydrangeas on the right side…

Next up are these amazing State Fair  Zinnias–compliments of my garden friend Ron Daniels. Just as Ron said–these Zinnias are blooming machines!

State Fair Zinnias ... THANKS RON!
State Fair Zinnias … THANKS RON!

This Stargazer lily just begs to be mentioned. The Stargazers have had a wonderful and long season this year! And the fragrance … unbelievable!

Stargazer Lily...
Stargazer Lily…

These lovely ladies need no introduction … Say hello to my Black Eyed Susans. They do not know how to be subtle. And, they nestle up to a fence and spill over in the most delightful way ever. And, you know what I think about yellow in the garden—It brings the sunshine in!

Blackeyed Susan making a statement!
Blackeyed Susans making a statement!

Here is the entrance to my herb garden. Love the fragrance of my herbs–love the fence that Mr. G made and especially love the sign that Mr. G made…

Entrance to Herb Garden...
Entrance to Herb Garden…

I’ll leave you with one of my favorite places on earth … My Potting Shed. Another wonderful creation of Mr. G.

L O V E him and all his wonderful creations!

I have never had an unhappy moment in my Potting Shed!
I have never had an unhappy moment in my Potting Shed! The hydrangeas are very happy there too!

Wishing you a wonderful day doing all the things you love to do — surrounded by the people you love best!!

A Rose A Day: Peggy Martin

Peggy Martin RoseThis year I planted the Peggy Martin rose after hearing the amazing story behind the rose. Many of the  historical roses I love are true survivors, but no rose has a more amazing story than the Peggy Martin Rose.

This rose was one of only two plants surviving 20 feet of salt water over the garden of Mrs. Peggy Martin, Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana, after the destruction of Hurricane Katrina in late August, 2005. Peggy lost her home, her parents, her rose garden of more than 450 antique roses she had collected for 30 years, as well as their commercial fishing boat to the storm!

Peggy Martin
Peggy Martin

MEET PEGGY MARTIN…

Peggy Martin has a new rose garden of more 300 roses and has been a no-spray organic gardener for 40 years!

I will have the pleasure of chatting with Peggy Martin about her experiences on August 3 when she joins us for Rose Chat Radio. You can join us too — more information about that here.

Below is a Peggy Martin Rose that is growing in Peggy’s “new” garden…

This is a picture of the Peggy Martin Rose that now grows in Peggy Martin's new rose garden....
The Peggy Martin Rose that now grows in Peggy Martin’s new rose garden….

Chamblee’s Rose Nursery acquired cuttings from the original rose in New Orleans in January, 2007.  I bought mine from them this spring. They sent a very healthy little plant that has grown to be about 2.5′ high. For info on ordering this rose, read on.

This rose is obviously extremely hardy as well as a vigorous climber. The fact that it is virtually thornless makes it even more desirable for walkways or around children’s play areas! As far as blooms are concerned, the pictures tell the story of what this rose does in early summer! And I’m told this rose often comes back with another bloom cycle in late summer/early fall.

My Peggy Martin rose will be roommates with Francis E Lester on the wonderful new rose arbor Mr G built. (Read more about that here.) I think they will be very happy together! But, just may compete for space! 🙂

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Neighbors…. on their way to great things!
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What a beautiful place to “grow up”! Thanks Mr G!
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You’ll see a BIG difference in me next year!

Hard to believe that June is coming to a close. I have enjoyed spending National Rose Month with you and sharing some of my favorite roses. Thank you for going on this journey with me.

What’s Next?

So far I have not seen my first Japanese Beetle but I know they are on their way, so I will be out there protecting my roses! There may not be many rose blooms to see for the next few weeks, BUT that just gives my perennials an opportunity to take center stage–stay tuned–I love to share about them too!

Here’s one of the perennials making a great show right now as a companion to my Poseidon RosesYarrow!

Poseidon and her companion -- Yarrow...
Poseidon and her companion — Yarrow…

A Rose A Day: Reine des Violette

Reine des Violette is a lovely Hybrid Perpetual that dates back to 1860. Hybrid Perpetuals  were developed as hardy garden plants between 1840 and 1900, by crossing the Portland, Bourbon and Gallica roses and were mostly used as cut flowers in the days before hybrid teas.

The “Queen of Violettes” has double, quartered blooms that are amazingly fragrant. This year in my garden she started out deep pink and faded to  purple.  The color is so intense that it is hard to capture … especially when all you use is your iPhone! 🙂

I have 3 of these roses and find them oh so charming! The have that wild, old rose growth habit and multi-petaled, quartered blooms that I just love!

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This year she is giving me a run for my money with Black Spot and Powdery Mildew. Just a little to damp out for her! Hey it’s been a little to damp out for me too! We’ll get through it.