Still Culling

ingrid_vc(Z10 SoCal)August 12, 2014

Marjorie Palmer, Baptiste LaFaye, Mr. Bluebird (one of two), one Sophy's Rose of two, a baby Souvenir de President Carnot, Pink Lafayette and Pink Soupert are the latest casualties, roses that have mostly been around for two years and are struggling more and more in the heat. Mrs. Dudley Cross is the next to go. On the plus side, roses that weren't doing well and have improved by moving to a shadier location such as Emily, Souvenir du President Carnot (the older one), Hoag House Cream and Dr. O'Donel Brown have really encouraged me. My aim is to preserve the rarer varieties that can succeed here. I'm not willing to waste lots of water on roses that haven't proved themselves, which leaves more for the winners. Fewer and better roses are my goal in the face of greater heat, drought and limited water resources.


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You're definitely on the right track, Ingrid, not only for the water issues, but (ahem) as we "mature", the more there is to take care of, the harder it is. Notice I used "WE". There was no intention to suggest anyone other than myself is experiencing the desire to have less work required to keep my obsession going. But, it's the truth. It's far easier to care for ten roses PROPERLY than it is to try doing a half-baked job of caring for fifty, both physically as well as mentally. And, ten take far less water than fifty.

However, if you want to increase shade in your garden to enable yourself to grow a few more you might not be quite ready to let go of yet, think about planting a few Dodnea (Hopseed Bush) between the worst of the sun exposure and where you want the roses to grow. You've already seen what increasing shade in the more severe climates can do for the roses. Shade can be created by careful placing of a few, well chosen plants. Hopseed is a very forgiving, easily maintained plant and just might help enable you to push a bit further, a bit longer. Crepe Myrtles can also be used, but they have much larger, woodier roots which may not be something you want to deal with in some beds. Kim

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 2:46PM
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Do you guys have sentimental attachment to roses you have to let go? I am now in the position of getting rid of a lot of my roses (20 of them) because I will be moving out of the house soon. All my roses are in containers. I might take 3 of them with me.

I can't give my roses to my friends because they don't like roses due to high maintenance. I feel like wasting money by throwing things away. This is the second time I had to throw roses away due to relocation. I feel really bad.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 4:19PM
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ingrid_vc(Z10 SoCal)

Kim, you're right about crape myrtle roots, I do believe. In the back where I have wide, long-branched crape myrtles the roses in that area are not doing so well. In fact, two of the ones I culled are in that very area and the third one I had to replant to another place because it simply sat there, month after month. Thanks for pointing that out.

I don't have any unpaved space in which to plant anything large like a dodonea, Kim. My gardening areas are uniquely awkward and chopped up and the individual areas are too small to tinker with to any extent. If I ripped everything out and let a master garden designer and architect loose......well, we know that isn't going to happen. And yes, I'm definitely one of those "mature" gardeners who wants and needs less work. I just found out yesterday that I have a torn rotator cuff, although fortunately it's in my left shoulder.

jumbojimmy, the roses I tossed were small, insignificant entities that only a mother could love. Having to let go of more mature specimens that actually flowered and made their presence known in a positive way is an altogether different experience. My heart goes out to you because what you're having to do is awful. Isn't there any way you can take more than three? Of course they'd have to be the best of the best, those you just can't let go.


    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 4:35PM
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Do you have a local rose society? They may have knowledge of other rose lovers who would LOVE to have your roses. I wish you the best.

Ingrid, I am sad for you and all others who deal with the serious challenge of unending drought. It does sound like you are taking wise steps.

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 8:54PM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

Too bad about Pink Lafayette since Vintage was the last one who sold it (or so it shows on HMF)

    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 9:28PM
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ingrid_vc(Z10 SoCal)

Kippy, Pink Lafayette did very poorly for me. It was in afternoon shade, carefully watered and mulched, also fertilized, and it never became larger than band size. I think it had two flowers in more than a year. I could no longer justify the water I was giving it. If it's a worthwhile rose, hopefully someone else will offer it at some time


    Bookmark   August 12, 2014 at 11:37PM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

I hope you are right, looks like it is in 4 other gardens.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2014 at 12:11AM
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annesfbay(9b Sunset 15)

It looks like it is being preserved in the San Jose Heritage Rose Garden.


    Bookmark   August 13, 2014 at 12:23AM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

Never mind me Ingrid. I have a hard time culling certain plants. When there are only a few left it just is hard for me to see one less. I have a stupid hedge I really don't enjoy but it has has the possibility of being almost 100 years old and likely from an important local nursery. So it stays...guava hedge and I wish I could get a scion back from the apple my dad hybridized but it never made it in to enough gardens for me to find one alive

    Bookmark   August 13, 2014 at 1:17AM
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I feel that pain, too, Kippy. I wouldn't take out the guava hedge, either. I'm sorry you can't find your dad's apple. I've felt that pain over lost roses, particularly when I've known the person who bred it and then wished they could once again grow it. Barney Gardner bred Dream Dust. Ralph Moore used it to breed Rosetone. Dennison Morey and ROYAT both sold it through their nurseries. Barney lost it and fortunately, found it still growing at a childhood friend's home who bought it in the late sixties and maintained it because it represented "the local boy who made good" to him. It hurts, but you just can't hold on to everything. Kim

    Bookmark   August 13, 2014 at 1:28AM
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Campanula UK Z8

I am shocked to find myself quite mean and heartless. I suspect that making the decisions what to take to our woods is considerably easier at this point in the year when everything is a rampantly, bindweed attacked mess....rather than back in June when it all looked lovely. I find that out of over 100 roses, only around 20 are being bare-rooted and moved - the rest, well, who cares.
But then, I am one of those gardeners who is in love with the process rather than the results. Once I have sown, grown and admired a plant, boredom kicks in. As soon as that climactic blooming appears, like the shameless trollop that I am, I have a cigarette, roll over and go to sleep (metaphorically, obvs, since I am now in thrall to e,cigs).
Also, being a cheapskate, when I have paid good cash money for a plant, I am damn well getting some value out of it....but since I chuck seeds around with prolific abandon, it is startlingly easy to cull with glee - armfuls at a time. Might just get the Austrian scythe out, in fact and really go at it.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2014 at 7:14AM
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jerijen(Zone 10)

There are some I regret losing, but I will save what I can -- knowing that as I grow older, caring for things down on the hillside will be less and less feasible.

Can't save everything.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2014 at 9:13PM
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