Rose Buzz: Easy PZ Roses are Here

Rose Buzz_White_8Remember when Paul Zimmerman, award-winning Rosarian and author, announced on the Rose Chat Podcast that he was teaming with Heirloom Roses to launch a new collection of roses with his endorsement … Easy PZ Roses? The time has come!

Take a look at these amazing roses with the stamp of approval from one of the premiere advocates of sustainable, easy care roses. I am excited about all these new roses, especially Good Ol’ Summertime. Look at that color! I simply can’t wait to have this one growing in my garden! Luscious! Click on the pictures to read all about this beauty!

 

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A good yellow rose is just hard to beat!
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Look at all those blooms!

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If you didn’t get to hear Paul’s Rose Chat podcast … take a minute and listen in. No one can tell the story of  Easy PZ better than Paul, plus you get to hear what’s going on in his garden at The Funny Farm. Click here.

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Thanks for stopping by.

If you are one of the lucky ones who is already growing some of these beautiful roses, let us know how they are doing in your neck of the woods!

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Cemetery Roses

images-2As many of you know I have loved roses since I was a teenager but I didn’t start my dive into old and historical roses until the 80s when I read the journal of a young woman who left the comfort of her home to join her husband in a journey west. One of the experiences she described was painstakingly taking cuttings of the roses and plants she just couldn’t live without. As I read her story, I felt as though I was going on the journey with her. Roses were not just for beauty to the women of this era. They were also a source of flavoring and vitamin C (from their hips). Even the most thorny roses were of value as they were used as living fences to protect vegetable gardens and such.

Harison's Yellow
Harison’s Yellow in my garden…

Also during this time we were given Harison’s Yellow (Hybrid Foetida) rose from a friend in Tennessee who had received it from a family member in Ohio. We learned that this rose had been passed through their family for some time. I started doing some investigation and found out just where the rose originated. You can read the history of Harison’s Yellow here.

I continue to love old garden and historical roses and have several in my garden. What a joy it is to visit gardens that have these lovely old beauties. One such garden is definitely on my garden bucket list … The award-winning Sacramento City Cemetery Rose Garden. This garden is home to old or antique roses collected from cemeteries, old home sites and along roadsides in northern California. The establishment of the garden was done by Fred Boutin, an internationally recognized rosarian and authority on “found roses,” and Jean Travis, a member of the Heritage Rose Group. Members of this group work to collect, plant and maintain these roses which were popular from the California Gold Rush era through the Victorian/Edwardian era (1850-1915). The collection now includes more than 400 plants–over 200 varieties.

For those of you who love fragrant roses, these roses are some of the most fragrant roses that exist.

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You can imagine how thrilled I was to have Anita Clevenger, Curator of this garden, with us on Rose Chat. Did you know that cemeteries used to be a place to gather for picnics regularly? Hear about that and more by clicking on the Rose Chat logo below.

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If you live in the the Sacramento area, their annual Open Day in the Garden event is in April. They have many activities planned including the ever popular Rose Sale! Hundreds of roses are available and they always sell out. So, it pays to get there early! 🙂

For the list of other events in the garden this year, read on.

Bloom Thyme Friday: Repeat Bloomers

In the rose world when you mention repeat, you are often referring to how often or how quickly a rose repeats it’s bloom cycle. Some repeat quickly while others do their amazing display of blooms all at once.

Repeat now has another meaning for me. On the Rose Chat Podcast recently our guest was Jennifer Grove, Founder of Repeat Roses. You can listen to Jennifer tell her story by clicking the Rose Chat logo below…

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Repeat Roses provides concierge pickup service to remove hotel and wedding event floral arrangements, and delivers joy to local residents at nursing homes, hospice care and family shelters. Their goal is to deliver joyful experiences that benefit the emotional health of their residents and patients.

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This picture speaks of beauty on so many levels.

 

Many of you know that I am a former florist and I can tell you that it used to drive me and my associates crazy to know that our beautiful creations would most likely end up in the trash in a few hours.

I can also speak as a mother of the bride and a mother of the groom when I say what a great service they are providing. After a big event families want to do something with the flowers, but are too exhausted to organize what Repeat Roses has in place. They take care of containers, redesigns and delivery! They even return to the site to collect and compost all waste to keep tons of organics out of landfills!

How fulfilling for families and event planners — to have the flowers that just contributed so much to their beautiful event, have another life bringing joy to those in their community who most need their spirits lifted.

1898110_248917495281306_1744385698_nI applaud Jennifer for her innovative and sustainable solution to a florist’s nightmare! Please go to RepeatRoses.com to see just what they are doing. And, following along on Facebook to see what’s going on regularly! If you or someone you know is having a special event, maybe you can partner with them too!

From Devastation to Inspiration: Peggy Martin

Today I find myself in the middle of the most perfect weather any August in Indiana has ever had to offer. I am gardening and thinking about my morning. This morning I had the pleasure of interviewing Peggy Martin on Rose Chat Radio and what a delight she was.

Peggy’s family went through the devastation of Hurricane Katrina where she lost her parents, her home, her husband’s commercial fishing boat and her 35-year-old garden filled with many hard-to-find plants and a rose collection that included 450 roses. Many of the roses were rare and unique varieties. Peggy had been very involved in the New Orleans Old Garden Rose Society and worked tirelessly as a volunteer in many garden restoration projects.

Peggy Martin
Peggy Martin

As we talked I could tell that the pain of losing her parents is something she is still going through. I lost my Dad this year … losing a parent is a special kind of loss.

Most of my time with Peggy was spent talking about her garden experiences before and after Katrina.

Can you imagine what it was like for her to go back to the site of her home to see everything devastated. Gone. The entire area had been under salt water for more than 2 weeks. Salt water and plants just do not mix and at first look every living plant seemed to be dead. At closer inspection, two roses were found that had not only survived, one was to beginning to thrive—The Peggy Martin Rose…

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

Hardy in Zones 4 – 9, this rose is a vigorous, almost thornless climber that often reaches 15’ high and 6 ‘ wide.

Rose experts from around the world have been brought in to help identify this rose, but no one has any clue as to the actual name or origin. I think that is probably as it should be. Perhaps this rose is now fulfilling it’s purpose in reminding us to never give up even when all seems to be lost.

“This rose has become a symbol among gardeners and rose lovers of a tenacious plant associated with a spirit of renewal and regrowth in the aftermath of a devastating blow of Nature against those living and gardening in the Gulf Coast area.” –William Welch (Prof Texas A & M)

Friends Made the Difference

“I would rather walk with a friend in the dark, than alone in the light.” -Helen Keller

During the very dark days and months after Katrina the last thing on Peggy’s mind was creating a new garden and that’s where her friends came in. One of the ways they helped her heal was through rebuilding her garden. One by one they began to bring roses back into Peggy’s life. Peggy’s lovely new garden is now filled with 240 roses and rose companions of every kind. She is currently involved in many rose organizations, like the Heritage Rose Foundation and she is the Chairman for the Old Garden Rose and Shrub Committee of the American Rose Society.

Below are pictures of Peggy’s current garden…

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Peggy Martin Story (Dallas) 029-1Peggy Martin Story (Dallas) 002Peggy Martin Story (Dallas) 007-1Beautiful and charming just like Peggy herself.


It’s All About the Soil

In talking with Peggy I learned that she has been a completely organic gardener for 40 years. She is all about healthy soil and integrated plant and pest management — a system she calls “the easiest way to garden.” During the interview, she gave many tips for creating a healthy garden whether you are new to gardening or someone who wants to take your garden to the next level. She also gave us her advice on rose selection.

The Podcast

During our time together we talked about so much more–like her complete step-by-step guide for taking rose cuttings.

Don’t miss hearing this incredible story from Peggy herself … simply click here for the Rosechat podcast.