My two Darcey Bussells are busy blooming....well one more than the other who decided to put a cane 10 feet up a tree.
Maybe it is that third year leap :-)
Nope. I had dead headed/pruned and 3' and this cane took off after
Sorry. It is Bussell not what the android pad thought I really meant despite re typing it several times
My Austins often do that when they are relatively new. It's like it finally gets settled in enough (roots growing and such) that finally one or two canes take off to the "real" height of the shrub. Looks strange since the rest of the shrub is shorter. I think you will find that next year, the shrub will put out lots of those longer canes--that will be the true height of the shrub. On the other hand, I had one I didn't want getting taller so I trimmed the long canes back to the rest of the shrub. After doing that several times, the shrub seemed to get the message and didn't put out longer canes--well, not very often anyway.
Several of the Austins we've grown here over the years turned out to be determined to grow up to bet. 12- and 15-ft. tall. Sadly, they ALSO turned out to be determined to bloom at the top of those long canes.
We finally decided, they would only bloom en masse if we had a way to pull those canes out horizontally. We had no place to do that, and big, gawky, bloom-less roses don't enchant me, so those roses are No Longer With Us.
The reds are terrible for it. They all must have a common ancestor. I can't think of one that doesn't, maybe the squire but that's because it can't summon the energy to do anything. I just chop those canes back and chop them back hard, below the desired outline. Falstaff by far my worst and darcey my best but the tendency is still there.
Not just the reds, tho!
Othello was awful for that. But so (here in our mild coastal conditions) were Evelyn, Graham Thomas, and even The Pilgrim.
I whacked L.D. Braithwaite right back to the ground, over and over. and it would race up to the top of my 12-ft. retaining wall!
No. Not ALL Austins do it -- but in our conditions, several of them sure do.
Yes they sure do. Planning for 2-3 times the Austin stated size for the more vigorous roses helps :) With normal shrub pruning they will eventually become nice floriferous shrubs but much larger than what one might had originally planned for.
This post was edited by nikthegreek on Sun, Jul 20, 14 at 1:07
Must be climate-related. Here Darcey B never topped 3' high and was always naked due to blackspot. None of the red Austins I've grown have shown that kind of vigor, though I've had some Octopus-sized pinks and yellows.
I can only think of four of the Austins in our garden that stay smaller, Darcey was on that list.
My Mystery Austin (Corvedale maybe)
Munstead Wood (guessing next year this one will take off as well)
I tried cutting Lady of Megginch 1.5" thorn trunks every time she threw one last year, she just got mad and stopped blooming. The last one threw two 12 foot canes from the cut so I am wrapping her around more like a climber and we will see if that will get her blooming better. Interesting that this rose is already OFF the USA David Austin list, guessing this habit common in her but not as common in the UK where they still sell her.
I'm in cold Michigan and believe me the reds aren't the only ones that like to climb! I have both Golden Celebration and Graham Thomas and they both insist on being over 10 feet tall! I always have a good laugh at the catalog stated sizes, lol.
Prospero is one Austin red stays at a reasonable size. What a trouper he is. Mine has bloomed like crazy since it finally established itself--took years and years, but now he never quits.
So far my Darcey has maintained her three foot tallishness, but she's only two years in the ground. Your report of 10' cane Kippy has put fear in my heart.
Second Hoovb's comments on Prospero. He truly is a TROOPER. Yes, it took him years to establish. Didn't happen until we treated him like a China, and quit pruning him. Now, he is almost never out of bloom in our conditions. OH, and he's approaching 4-ft. tall!
I have to wonder if having a tree to lean on had any effect on the cane? It is a good 10-12 feet up there. The rest are all about 4 feet tall although they did get a tad tall by the end of the season, I never have had to prune too much off of them though.
Well, it might have. Giving a rose something to climb on sometimes appears to stimulate them to do so. Ever seen 'Mutabilis,' climbing up through, and draping down from, a coastal Live Oak tree???
Darcey is still on the move. I would need the orchard ladder to visit the end of that cane.
Jeri, I would love to see Mutabilis in Coastal Live Oak, that must be something.
I had an odd thought for you all, not that she is blooming up at the top of the tree that I can tell. The cane is about 30 feet tall at this point.
If I took a cutting of this cane and it tried to climb a tree too, would that mean it is a climbing sport of Darcey Bussell? I am going to wait til the tree drops its leaves to take a photo. It is a shiro plum that is so tall we get no fruit and we are slowly cutting a section low a season
I have been waiting for the leaves to fall on the plum to figure out where Darcey hid her climbing cane.
I spotted it. Up in the banana tree reaching for the house
Maybe she just wants some bananas.
ratdogheads, too funny!
I was at the Huntington last weekend to see the roses and they are pretty strict keeping most of the the DA roses cut back in the big beds ( not the climbers on structures ). Some just hate it and don't look like the huge plants they will be if you aren't constantly cutting them down. Still, most every DA plant had blooms so I think it can be done if you are willing to keep pruning.
I agree with Jeri that the tall ones are prettier if you fan them out on a structure or a fence where they can bloom all along the cane.