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Aug 22 • 2012 • BloomBranchesCanopyLargest.BushRoseRose Facts & TriviaWhitegardeners

Rose Facts and Trivia

-- The world's largest rose bush is in Tombstone, Ariz. It is almost 200 years old and when in full bloom is adorned with more than 200,000 white blooms. Its trunk is nearly 6 feet in diameter, and its branches form a canopy large enough to shelter a crowd of 150 people. -- An estimated 150 million rose plants are purchased by gardeners worldwide every year. -- Until the early 19th century, dried rose petals were believed to have mysterious powers. Napoleon gave his officers bags of rose petals to boil in white wine to cure lead poisoning from bullet wounds. -- One of the oldest paintings in the world depicts a five-petaled pink rose. It resides in a cave on the island of Crete and dates to about 1450 B.C.

Details of all our roses are available on our web site. Over 1000 varieties to choose from.

www.countrygardenroses.co.uk

 

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May 19 • 2012 • ChelseaDroughtFlowerJubileeRose NewsRoyalShowWeatherWettestgardeners

Rose News From Around The World

UK

Chelsea

POOR WEATHER AT CHELSEA CAUSES PROBLEMS

The Royal Jubilee rose looks worryingly floppy and the Turk's head lilies won't open on the penultimate buildup day

It was a mild, calm day at the Chelsea flower show on Friday, which is more than could be said for the gardeners. With a bitterly cold winter followed by a hot, dry March and the wettest April on record, plus the odd slash of hail and sleet in the last weeks of the buildup, their nerves were shredded.

Nigel DunneTt's rainwater-saving drought garden was built while rain was coming down in torrents. Now the rain had stopped, he had to fill the pools with tap water, and it was so dark that his swaths of Turk's head lilies would not open. "They will open," he said determinedly, "and if they don't, they look very nice as buds."

According to young David Austin, his arms full of a rose bush almost as tall as himself, this was "the worst Chelsea, no question, the worst". Old David Austin, founder of the eponymous rose-growers and still a flower show regular at 86, would be along any minute to check his work. All their show roses had to go back into heated glasshouses to persuade them to bloom in time, and some did not like the treatment at all – including Royal Jubilee, a new rose that is looking worryingly floppy before the Queen's visit on Monday evening.

"A lot of patience. A lot. But no swearing," Darren Share, head of Birmingham council's gardens, said firmly. The centrepiece of the Brum garden is an old Mini, confiscated from a colleague's wife and now planted all over with sedum. "Done her a favour. I reckon we saved somebody's life when we took the engine out of that."

If the plants all die in Tony Heywood and Alison Condie's Glamourland, it would be an artistic statement more than a disaster. Their concept garden is about the struggle between natural and artificial worlds, with a soundtrack nightmarishly mixing birdsong and computer game noises. So far nature seemed to be winning, Condie conceded, down on her knees tidying the ground-cover plants that were being pecked to pieces by birds, and breathing in a heady reek of fox pee.

Diarmuid Gavin was reclining on a sofa 12 metres (40ft) up in the air, giggling. "Anywhere you like – astonish me!" he chirped as one of his gardeners staggered past, weighed down by pots of lilies. Last year he created Chelsea's first and almost certainly last flying garden, hauled into the air by a crane. While working on that he was walking along the river past Albert bridge, which was swaddled in scaffolding while being refurbished, and had a brainwave for this year's show: the hanging gardens of Babylon, on five levels and 24 metres tall, involving 4.2 miles of scaffolding and trees sprouting out at wild angles.

The way up is by alarmingly swaying lift past the first-floor vegetable garden, second-floor bar and third-floor potting shed, to the rooftop. Down, for the brave, is by stainless steel tube slide, inspired by Carsten Höller's at the Tate. "I'm going to do something really special next year, I've got it all in my head, just you wait," Gavin said. "It'll be a surprise."

In truth, the only way he could surprise Chelsea is if he brings a neat rectangle of nicely mown lawn, with a few daisies to add excitement.

She probably would not say it too loudly in front of the gardeners, but the weather struck the deputy show manager, Sarah Easton, as pretty perfect. "No watering this year, so we're really happy," she said, "and the result of all that rain is that it all looks incredibly lush for visitors."

In the wretched weeks of April, she had a mud crew scraping the top level of soil off the show garden sites and a puddle crew on standby to pump out developing lakes. "Incredible camaraderie" developed as a result, she said.

Early visitors included Daniel Chamovitz, American author of What a Plant Knows, and a bit startled by the trench warfare of Chelsea on the penultimate buildup day: "Wow. More plywood than plants." He was charmed by a tiny Japanese-designed, moss-covered cottage. "What does moss know?" he pondered. "Moss doesn't really care. Give me water and light and let me just sit here and hang out and photosynthesise, that's what moss knows."

Details of all our roses are available on our web site. Over 1000 varieties to choose from.

www.countrygardenroses.co.uk

READ MORE >

 

Mar 11 • 2012 • BushesFlowersHybridRose Newsgardenersnurseryroses

ROSE NEWS FROM AROUND THE WORLD

USA

ROSE INDUSTRY NOT LOOKING GOOD IN THE STATES

BELOVED 

For a century, devoted gardeners have appreciated the marvels of delicate and finicky hybrid roses and referred to them by name, like pets or family. The product of generations of breeding, the queen of flowers could act like a spoiled princess because its delicate blooms offered a special reward.

In recent years, though, time-strapped homeowners have traded their big teas for compact shrub roses — utilitarian soldiers in the landscape that could cover ground without fuss. Our desire for the carefree — no-iron shirts, no-wax floors, and now low-maintenance yards — has brought the rose industry to a crossroads. "At some point, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy," said Charlie Anderson, president of Weeks Roses, the only major company still creating new varieties of full-size roses. "[Landscape] roses will be all you have; the beautiful, unique hybrid teas will be gone." The flagging economy has compounded the rose industry's troubles. Two years ago, rose giant Jackson & Perkins, which had annually shipped 10 million bushes nationwide, filed for bankruptcy protection. Many of the hybrid roses the company created — such as Diana, Catalina and Beloved — may soon disappear from the mass market as the supply of those bushes dries up. "Roses are viewed as an extravagance, and they're still trying to shed that stigma," said Seth Taylor of Capital Nursery. "People have a very specific thing in mind when they think of a rose — it's full and lush and romantic. That's your traditional rose, what people love," Taylor said. "The single-petaled shrub roses are gaining a foothold with the public, but when my customers look at those flowers, they say, 'That's not a rose.'" While gardeners may have visions of old-fashioned roses plucked from cottage gardens, their interest in growing them has waned, said Jolene Adams, incoming national president of the American Rose Society. "Many homeowners have had some experience — usually in their mother's or grandmother's gardens — so they'll try growing roses," she said. "But without sufficient knowledge [on how to care for them], the roses languish and do not grow to their full, beautiful potential. And they're not replaced if they die." Most of the nation's rosebushes originate in California's Central Valley. But unlike with wheat or tomatoes, it takes several years to produce a single crop of rosebushes. Hybridizers typically will test 400,000 seedlings to find one or two new varieties. Once selected, a new hybrid will be developed for seven to 10 years before it's released into the market. When ready for sale, field-grown bushes are 2 years old. Winter is prime rose-planting time. But this month, local gardeners are finding limited selections at nurseries and home centers. "I observed dramatically fewer roses in the nurseries this year," said T.J. David, co-founder of the World Peace Rose Garden in Sacramento's Capitol Park. "The financial ills of the rose growers will cause a slowdown in the number of new varieties of roses that are available for sale," he said. "Since growers make plans years in advance, it may take a year or two to see the full impact." The annual wholesale value of California's rose crop dropped 55% to $27.20 million in 2010 from a high of $61.05 million in 2003, according to nursery industry expert Hoy Carman, a retired UC Davis professor. "The whole nursery industry is down," Carman said. "In 2008, sales just plummeted." Said Adams of the Rose Society: "Roses are not the first thing homeowners think of when they want to plant a garden. Competition with other choice plants is fierce.... The industry is going to have to change — and supply roses that the customers can use in the landscape." Most major rose growers have gone bankrupt or consolidated with other wholesale nurseries. Weeks Roses, in Wasco near Bakersfield, survived its bankruptcy and is now owned by Indiana-based Gardens Alive Inc. On 1,000 leased acres, Weeks will harvest about 3 million bushes this year. During grafting and harvest season, it employs almost 400 people. Jackson & Perkins, acquired by J&P Park Acquisitions Inc. of South Carolina, no longer develops and grows new roses. Before bankruptcy, the company farmed 5,000 acres in Wasco with 20,000 bushes per acre. Without buyers, many of those bushes were burned. Once a breeder goes bankrupt, its roses usually disappear with it. Rose patents — good for 18 to 20 years — may be sold, but budwood and mother plants are lost. Many Jackson & Perkins roses are now on the endangered list. "Some will be preserved," Anderson said. "But a lot of varieties were lost; there was no budwood to collect [to create new hybrid bushes]. Most will just disappear into the ether."

Details of all our roses are available on our web site. Over 1000 varieties to choose from.

www.countrygardenroses.co.uk

 

READ MORE >

 

Feb 14 • 2012 • BushesFlowersHybrid RosesNew Roses For 2012Princess Of Walesbloomsgardeners

ROSE NEWS FROM AROUND THE WORLD

USA

THE FUTURE DOES NOT LOOK ROSY

PRINCESS OF WALES

Future generations may never know the beauty of Diana, Princess of Wales; sniff Catalina in the sunshine; or fall for Beloved. For a century, devoted gardeners have appreciated the marvels of delicate and finicky hybrid roses and referred to them by name, like pets or family. The product of generations of breeding, the queen of flowers could act like a spoiled princess because its delicate blooms offered a special reward. In recent years, though, time-strapped homeowners have traded their big teas for compact shrub roses—utilitarian soldiers in the landscape that could cover ground without fuss. Our desire for the carefree—no-iron shirts, no-wax floors, and now low-maintenance yards—has brought the rose industry to a crossroads. “At some point, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. (Landscape) roses will be all you have; the beautiful, unique hybrid teas will be gone,” said Charlie Anderson, president of Weeks Roses, the only major company still creating new varieties of full-size roses. The flagging economy has compounded the rose industry’s troubles. Two years ago, rose giant Jackson & Perkins, which had annually shipped 10 million bushes countrywide, filed for bankruptcy protection. Many of the hybrid roses the company created—such as Diana, Catalina and Beloved—may soon disappear from the mass market as the supply of those bushes dries up. “Roses are viewed as an extravagance and they’re still trying to shed that stigma,” said Seth Taylor of Capital Nursery. “People have a very specific thing in mind when they think of a rose—it’s full and lush and romantic. That’s your traditional rose, what people love,” Taylor said. “The single-petaled shrub roses are gaining a foothold with the public, but when my customers look at those flowers, they say ‘That’s not a rose.’ “ While gardeners may have visions of old-fashioned roses plucked from cottage gardens, their interest in growing them has waned, said Jolene Adams, incoming national president of the American Rose Society. “Many homeowners have had some experience—usually in their mother’s or grandmother’s gardens—so they’ll try growing roses,” she said. “But without sufficient knowledge (on how to care for them), the roses languish and do not grow to their full, beautiful potential. And they’re not replaced if they die.” Most of the United States’ rose bushes originate in California’s Central Valley. But unlike wheat or tomatoes, it takes several years to produce a single crop of rose bushes. Hybridizers typically will test 400,000 seedlings to find one or two new varieties. Once selected, a new hybrid will be developed for seven to 10 years before it’s released into the market. When ready for sale, field-grown bushes are 2 years old. Winter is prime rose-planting time. Valentine’s Day also spurs sales. But this month, local gardeners are finding limited selections at nurseries and home centers. “I observed dramatically fewer roses in the nurseries this year,” said T.J. David, co-founder of the World Peace Rose Garden in Sacramento’s Capitol Park. “The financial ills of the rose growers will cause a slowdown in the number of new varieties of roses that are available for sale,” he said. “Since growers make plans years in advance, it may take a year or two to see the full impact.” The annual wholesale value of California’s rose crop dropped 55 percent from a high of $61.05 million in 2003 to $27.20 million in 2010, according to nursery industry expert Hoy Carman, a retired University of California-Davis professor. “The whole nursery industry is down,” Carman said. “In 2008, sales just plummeted.” Said Adams of the Rose Society: “Roses are not the first thing homeowners think of when they want to plant a garden. Competition with other choice plants is fierce. ... The industry is going to have to change—and supply roses that the customers can use in the landscape.” Most major rose growers have gone bankrupt or consolidated with other wholesale nurseries. Weeks Roses, in Wasco near Bakersfield, Calif., survived its bankruptcy and is now owned by Indiana-based Gardens Alive. On 1,000 leased acres, Weeks will harvest about 3 million bushes this year. During grafting and harvest season, it employs almost 400 people. Jackson & Perkins, acquired by South Carolina-based J&P Park Acquisitions, no longer develops and grows new roses. Before bankruptcy, the company farmed 5,000 acres in Wasco with 20,000 bushes per acre. Without buyers, many of those bushes were burned. Once a breeder goes bankrupt, its roses usually disappear with it. Rose patents—good for 18 to 20 years—may be sold, but budwood and mother plants are lost. Many Jackson & Perkins roses are now on the endangered list. “Some will be preserved,” Anderson said. “But a lot of varieties were lost; there was no budwood to collect (to create new hybrid bushes). Most will just disappear into the ether.”

Details of all our roses are available on our web site. Over 1000 varieties to choose from.

www.countrygardenroses.co.uk

 

READ MORE >

 

Jul 31 • 2011 • Rose Newsblack spotbloomsgardenersrose problemsrust

ROSE NEWS FROM AROUND THE WORLD

USA

MORE JAPANESE BEETLE HAVOC

Our rose problems are minor compared to other countries.

They seemed to come from nowhere, suddenly appearing on what felt like every branch, petal and leaf in Southwest. Crawling. Flying. Climbing. Gnawing.

After a week or so in the grasp of thousands of tiny mandibles from a species of scarab beetle called popillia japonica—or Japanese Beetles—many area plants have been left looking like swiss cheese, or worse.

As if Southwest's gardeners needed more to contend with after a summer of wild swings in temperature and sudden, ferocious downpours.

The most public devastation is happening at Lake Harriet's Rose Gardens, where many of the leaves and flowers have been reduced to skeletons. And gardeners all over Southwest Minneapolis are watching months of personal care nibbled away in a matter of weeks.

The beetles "have taken large chunks out of a variety of foliage all over my neighborhood," Sharon Hedrick wrote on the Facebook page of Southwest Minneapolis Patch.

"My roses are being destroyed by Japanese beetles," said Erin Hooper. "I'm trying to spray them away with pesticide, but they aren't leaving!"

Peggy Poore of Southwest Minneapolis's Uncommon Gardens, said the local Japanese Beetle population has exploded this year. One visit to the Lyndale Park Rose Garden is enough to see the creatures' depredations. Typically in bloom this time of year, the garden is riddled with whithered, rotting blossoms and yellowed leaves. Many of these wounded plants are covered with masses of the shiny blue-black creatures.

No surprise—roses are one of the beetles' favorite foods, according to the University of Minnesota's Extension school. The beetles also target trees, including some American Elms that line Minneapolis' streets. So far, said city Park Board officials, they haven't noticed extensive damage to the trees.

"Oh, that's just like with our basil back home," said Marlene Jue, an Ohio native in town visiting her daughter, as she bent over some of the Lyndale Rose Garden's damaged plants.

The little invaders first appeared in North America in 1916, according to the University, when they were accidentally introduced to New Jersey from Japan. Since then, the beetles have spread steadily westward, arriving in Minnesota in 1972. Japonica numbers are kept in check on the East Coast by two kinds of soil-dwelling, single-celled organisms that reduce numbers of beetle grubs, but no such biological countermeasures exist in Minnesota, according to a fact sheet from the school.

"Our pest company sprayed a combination of products on the beetles, which seems to have scared them away," Hedrick wrote. "My understanding is that the Japanese Beetle has a grub cycle, so it is also necessary to treat the ground where they lay their eggs. I am still working on that part.

Some Minneapolis gardeners have spent time scraping beetles off their leaves into cups or buckets of soapy water—a beetle dunked into this mixture dies within seconds. But for the dozens of beetles that even the most patient and obsessive gardener can deal with manually, scores more await.

Jue said she and her son Alexander tried a number of different remedies to get rid of the beetles, including spraying soapy water on the basil.

"We couldn't get rid of them!" she said.

The United State Department of Agriculture has produced the comprehensive "Managing the Japanese Beetle: A Homeowner's Handbook." The USDA has compiled other resources here.

Uncommon Gardens' Poore said her business has so far not been hit badly, but only out of luck.

The University's extension school recommends going after the beetles's larvae with pesticides. But with the beetles currently in the middle of their adult mating period, according to Poore, the best remedy is picking the beetles off plants as you see them, before they eat your plants to pieces.

However dire the floral situation may seem right now, said Poore, the end is in sight.

"The cycle is almost over," she said. "They won’t be around much longer. A lot of plants will survive—they'll just look bad."

 For details of all our current roses, see our extensive web site.

Over 1000 varieties to choose from

www.countrygardenroses.co.uk

READ MORE >

 


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