Dilip's 2006 Garden Journal

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Finally, we are enjoying warm weather in the 70s. I picked up from nearby Witherspoon Rose Culture, three bare root roses. Elizabeth Taylor (deep pink hybrid tea, bred in 1985 by Von C. Weddle with strong fragrance) is a rose I should have planted some years ago. For the red bed, I got another classic hybrid tea rose, Olympiad (McGredy, 1982, bred with seed from Red Planet and pollen from Pharoah). My Double Delight (one of my favorite hybrid teas with a mix of crimson and cream - the more sun, the more crimson - and a strong, lovely fragrance; hybridized in 1977 by crossing Granada with Garden Party, by Herbert C. Swim and A.E. & A.W. Ellis) in the main rose bed needs replacing, and I got a replacement.

I normally don't buy roses from non specializing stores, but I've been wanting to plant a yellow Lady Banks Rose (Rosa banksiae 'Lutea' , a species/wild rose) for a few years and a friend has offered to give me a cutting. I never got around to getting the cutting, and Witherspoon won't have potted ones ready for a few more weeks, but they are just starting to bloom and my wife is intent on getting one, so we went to Home Depot and got a 5-gallon one about to bloom. She is already about 6' tall and can grow to 30' and more! We are likely to train her to climb one of the sweet gum trees in the front yard.

More white azalea blooms are open. The Kerria Japonica in the left (as you face the house) side yard is rapidly blooming! For a few days now, I have one lone Avalon daffodil (mid- to late- season, large cupped with yellow petals becoming faded buff over time with white cup) blooming on the edge of the middle street-side rose bed; back in late 2000, I had planted 15 Avalon bulbs, as well as 10 of Rijnveld's Early Sensation (trumpet, very early, two-toned yellow). I wonder why the bulbs haven't thrived and multiplied there.

I finally finished pruning my roses - the three beds parallel to the road were left. The red bed looks dramatically different after pruning - Mr. Lincoln in particular had long canes but was reduced to a single cane - but the pith wasn't white and had brown in the center, so I ended up cutting it all the way back to the bud union. This is a strong bush, so I expect rejuvenation.


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