Room for Roses...

 Repeat flowering.
Unknown Golden Rose

Hee hee. I've decided I've got room for some new roses. Every decent garden has room for just one or two more. But I've been expanding - not me, rather the 'gardenable' area on my property - and the rose nursery is quite close, just a pleasant twenty minutes country drive in the Moosey car. A dozen, perhaps? Too greedy?

Thursday 20th February

Most of the 'new' roses which joined my garden this past year have been dug out of other people's gardens, rescued and adopted, offered country sanctuary with the promise of the good life. Choosing roses from laid-out rows in the nursery will be quite a different matter. Ooh goodie - all those labels...

Actually, I'll probably just get rugosas, and maybe throw in a couple of Paul Gauguins. I like his uncompromising stripes. And I'd like another Munstead Wood (a David Austin English rose) - in fact, I will check out all the David Austins. Again, ooh goodie...

When I get home I promise to weed in the Birthday Rose Garden, where three Roseraie de l'Hays (rescued late last season bare-rooted in plastic bags) are taking ages to settle and start growing. Trouble is that the weeds (mainly dandelions) are blocking their sun. Oops.

So sorry, but it's much later, and too hot to garden. I do, however, have four new roses - only four! Such restraint... There's another Intrigue for the side of the cottage, another Blanc Double de Coubert for the front, plus Frau Dagmar Hastrupp and Roseraie de l'Hay which are destined for the edge of the pond. But maybe not today.

Hmm... I've just put the hoses on and wandered around. OK. I have found another impassable path, this one in the Wattle Woods, where self-seeded dahlias have caused some confusion, flopping all over the stones and the weedy path itself. But they are flowering. So I should dig them out? How big a softie am I? Apologies to the Birthday Rose Garden for my absence, by the way. See you tomorrow, perhaps?

 My cottage cat.
Hello Minimus!

Friday 21st February

I have three hours (maybe) to garden, before the fog lifts and the thirty degree temperature predicted kicks in. Roses to plant, paths to clear - such a busy gardening life. I love it. Even when I'm feeling lazy, which I am not, today.


Oh joy. I will sleep well tonight, for I have been gardening for seven hours. No rushing - I've just tried to do a bit of everything. The Wattle Woods paths are cleared, as is the path behind the glass-house. This is such easy work, really. All it takes is a rake, plus some squeaky cat-company from Minimus to ensure I don't get bored.

The slightest of perennial problems - I never know whether to just rip out the Lychnis plants, or trim down their flowering stalks, so I've done a mixture of both. I've raked up gum leaves from the house lawn while a whole host more have fluttered gently down on top of me. Hmm...

I've planted the final rugosa roses by the pond, bucketed water on the fence-line Pittosporums (please grow big and strong for me ASAP), checked the orchard roses and put on their irrigation drippers. All these activities have seen me trudging far and wide. I've put in a fair 'kilometerage' today!

 One of the four surviving Wattle trees in on the right.
The Wattle Woods Path

I've also taken lots of photographs of the roses which often miss my intruding camera. The first blooming of the roses in late spring is so beautifully overwhelming that I forget to check some (particularly those in the back of the Shrubbery).

Othello Rose :
Othello is by far the most beautifully fragrant rose that I grow.

Yet I take oodles of photographs of others near the house (Othello and Mary Rose, for example), and all the pastel David Austins scattered throughout the garden. By the way, this does NOT mean that I have an excess of these wonderful shrubs in my garden. Far from it!

And I think I've correctly identified Monsieur Tillier - he has been lived a quiet, upright life in the Hen House Garden for years, ever since the garden was first developed. Dear upright, handsome man! He's only ever been photographed twice before. His colouring is rather subtle, he's flowering at the moment, and he's tall, tall, tall.

 My records from the year 2000 say that I planted him in the Hen House Garden.
Monsieur Tillier Rose

Hee hee. There's always room for more roses...