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…

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.

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 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!

Biltmore Rose Trials 2014

I have had the privilege to be in rose fairyland. Nestled in the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains, in the side lawn of the majestic Biltmore estate, the Biltmore rose garden was in perfect form for the second annual Biltmore International Rose Trials. A big shout out to Lucas Jack, Biltmore Rosarian & his crew and to Paul Zimmerman for his leadership and direction in establishing these trials.

The Dynamic Duo … Lucas Jack and Paul Zimmerman

 The Garden…



Amidst a flurry of amazing blooms, these roses emerged as the winners:

Frances Meilland / Meilland / Star Roses & Plants
Pauline Merrell Award for Best Hybrid Tea

Francis Meilland (Picture courtesy Star Roses and Plants)
Francis Meilland (Picture courtesy Star Roses and Plants)

Tequila Supreme / Meilland / Star Roses & Plants
Edith Wharton Award for Best Floribunda

Tequila Sunrise
Tequila Supreme

Bejazzo / Kordes
Gilded Age Award for Best Climbing Rose

Bejazzo Vased
Bejazzo in the garden...
Bejazzo in the garden… absolutely stunning from every angle.

Honorine de Brabant / Award of Excellence for Best Established Rose

Honorine de Brabant
Honorine de Brabant

Sweet Drift / Meilland
The Frederick Law Olmsted Award for Best Groundcover

Sweet Drift
Sweet Drift

Pookah / Polyantha / James Delahanty
The Honorable John Cecil Award for Open Group


Munstead Wood / David Austin Roses
Cornelia Vanderbilt Cecil Award for Most Fragrant

Munstead Wood


Miracle on the Hudson
Miracle on the Hudson
Miracle on the Hudson
Miracle on the Hudson

Miracle on the Hudson / Robert Neil Rippetoe

Chauncey Beadle Award for Best Shrub
William Cecil Award for Best Growth Habit
Lord Burleigh Award for Most Disease Resistant
George & Edith Vanderbilt Award for Most Outstanding  Rose (Best in Show)

None of these roses were grown with any special attention and no chemical sprays were used. The idea is to grow these roses in conditions that mimic that of a novice backyard gardener.

It was my pleasure to be up-close and personal with these lovely roses, and to join with some of my very favorite rose friends to be a part of a process that will result in more beautiful and sustainable roses for our gardens.


More Pictures…

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For more on the Biltmore rose trials, read on.

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…

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

I’ll keep you posted!!

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

Bloom Thyme Friday

Happy Bloom Thyme Friday!

A Rose A Day: The Fairy

The Fairy Rose is a pink Polyantha rose that is part of a select group of roses designated as Earth Kind. (Read more about Earth Kind here.) This lovely little rose is disease resistant and can take the heat!  It just keeps blooming even during those hot, hot, hot days of summer! You can also expect the blooms to fade to almost white as the heat climbs!


I have this rose in the ground and love it’s free flowing shape and how it moves and grooves in and out of the companion beside it but I hear it does very well in containers too.

The Fairy is hardy in Zones 4b through 9b and grows to about 3′ wide and tall.

Up close and personal….


Delicate bloom on a strong grower!
Delicate bloom on a strong grower!

A Rose A Day: Drifts

Today you are going to see 3 of my favorite roses–Peach Drift, Coral Drift and Apricot Drift.

As with all the roses in the Drift collection, these roses are amazingly disease resistant and small enough to fit into most any garden whether in a container, in the front of a border or in one of your nooks or crannies of the garden. I love to use them in front of my roses that have more sporadic bloom cycles.

These beauties are ever blooming so they give you season-long beauty!

Drift Collage

Drift roses come in other colors too… check them out here.

These roses are so beautiful and easy that I love to give them as gifts to new rose gardeners!



For information on Red Drift, read on.

Beautiful and Sustainable

While I was at P. Allen Smith’s Moss Mountain Farm for Garden 2 Blog, I was surrounded by beautiful and sustainable roses. This garden of thousands is a no-spray garden…

“If it doesn’t look good, we pitch it and plant something else.” -P Allen Smith

From the delicately fragrant Noisettes to the spectacular bloom of the Knockouts, Drifts and many other varieties both old and new, Moss Mountain is alive with the beauty and fragrance of roses. This amazing garden gets your attention with it’s size, but then draws you to come, slow down, relax, stroll……


Though Allen has always loved roses, it was while doing his graduate work in England that the rose love deepened. Allen became friends with Lady Elizabeth Ashbrook who grew beautiful roses. Upon his return from England he planted more and more roses that led to what you see above … a two acre garden reminiscent of the Gothic style found in Aiken-Rhett House garden in Charleston, SC.


But, roses are not just in the rose garden, in fact, you can’t walk very far either at his home in the historical district of Little Rock or at his farm, until you see more beautiful roses. Roses have found their way into most every “room” of the farm. Well, maybe not in Poultryville, but that is another post. Psssst… I fell in love with chickens and well–just might have to have some. Especially the Buff Orpingtons. For an article from Allen on  how to raise backyard chickens, read on.

Okay, okay back to roses. Look at these beauties…















IMG_0556 IMG_0555




To hear Allen tell the fascinating story on the building of the garden, watch this…


Many people say to me that they think all roses are prima donnas that need constant spray and attention. This garden proves otherwise. Sure, roses do need sun, food and water to survive and a little love and attention to thrive, but don’t we all. And, wow … aren’t they worth it!

If you have been reluctant to give roses a try, come on you can do it. I promise! Let Allen’s beautiful AND sustainable garden inspire you.


AllenSilkiesThen there were the chickens!


Spring Rose Care Top Five

RoseChatRadio_PolWhat is Rose Chat Radio

Disclosure: The majority of this trip including room, board and a bunch of neat swag – were provided to me at no expense for participating in the Garden2Blog event. There was no obligation to write about my experiences and all opinions stated here are my own.




Bloom Thyme Friday: Food for Thought

To keep your roses and other plants happily blooming for an entire season they need lots of sunshine, a consistent amount of water and regular doses of nutritional food! This year it’s all organic fertilizers for me. I know there are a ton of products out there, but here’s what I plan to use…

For my Roses

Alfalfa Tea for Roses ONLY
I plan to jumpstart the rose growing season with a one-time feeding of Haven Brand’s Alfalfa Tea. For more information or to order … click here.

Magic for Roses…
I love the word MAGIC when talking about caring for my roses! This year I’m using Mills Magic Rose Mix — a 100% natural product formulated and developed by Ted Mills, accredited Consulting Rosarian and Rose Show Judge of the American Rose Society. This product is a combination of alfalfa meal, fish meal, steamed bone meal, cottonseed meal, blood meal, activated sludge and an organic compost activator. How’s that for a sweet combination of good food! For more information … click here.

For Roses, Rose Companions and Veggies…
Manure teas condition the soil, so your plants’ root systems can better absorb the nutrients needed to build strong, healthy root base. Last year I used these teas on a few of my plants and the results made a true believer of me! In 2012 all my roses, rose companions and veggies will get steeped in tea! For more information or to order … click here.

What yummy food are you giving your plants?

Some of the Roses in My Garden

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3 Bill Warriner
3 Julia Child / Coming Spring 2012
2 Flamenco / Coming Spring 2012

3 Hansa (Rugosa) / 1 Coming Spring 2012
1 Blanc Double de Coubert (Rugosa)
3 Roseraie de l’Hay (Hybrid Rugosa)
1 F. J. Grootendorst  (Hybrid Rugosa)
1 Madam Hardy (Damask)
1 Harrison Yellow (Hybrid Foetida)
1 Comte de Chambord (Portland)
1 Bourbon Queen (Bourbon)
1 Zepherine Drouhin (Bourbon)
1 Reine de Voilettes (Hybrid Perpetual)

Hybrid Teas
3 The Grand Dame / 2 Coming Spring 2012

1 Eden / Coming Spring 2012

David Austins
2 Gertrude Jekyll
1 Charlotte
1 Crocus Rose
1 Othello
1 Christopher Marlowe
1 Lady Emma Hamilton
1 Eglantine
1 Comte de Champagne


3 New Dawn
2 Red Eden
1 Lady Ashe / Coming Spring 2012

2 Amber Shrubs
1 Bonica
1 White Meidiland
30 Red Double Knockouts
3 Pink Knockouts

1 Minnie Pearl
1 Pink  Mini
1 Coral Mini

Here are some other articles about roses… 

Bloom Thyme Friday: Peggy Rockefeller Rose Garden

Recently my daughter and I made a rather impromptu visit to the New York Botanical Gardens on a cold, sunny November morning. The cold wind did not stop us from being completely enchanted by this beautiful place. Half way into our tour we passed by the Peggy Rockefeller Rose Garden. What a beautiful surprise. Even through it was closed and past its blooming season, it was spectacular and quickly made it to our “must see in 2012” list. (Open May – October)

The rose garden, originally designed in 1916 and renovated in 2006/2007, is home to more than 4,000 rose plants and over 600 varieties.

This garden is fast becoming one of the world’s most environmentally friendly rose gardens.

Overcoming the rose’s reputation of being among the most chemically dependent flowers, they celebrate the addition of more than 1,700 new, hardy varieties–hybridization efforts from all over the world.

If you have never been there, maybe this needs to be on your “must see” list too. But, you don’t have to wait… take a peek at this video. Enjoy!