Sunday, March 3, 2013

February Roses

February was the month where I had the least rose blooms ever since I am gardening in San Diego and honestly, I am glad that I got a few flowers at all. The reason for this is that I pruned all my roses planted in the ground in January and they are not able to produce new blooms by February. I also pruned a lot of the roses that are growing in containers in the same month, so they couldn't make new blooms either. That leaves it up to the roses in containers that are not pruned, yet. Due to time constraints I wasn't able to fertilize those and especially because they are growing in pots the reality seem to be, that if they don't get fed they don't have the energy to make new blooms.

What I am learning from this is, that if I want to have roses flowering throughout the year, I have to change my pruning strategy aka the pruning timing. This year my intention is that I will try to start pruning in the beginning of December and finish by the end of January and be more diligent with the fertilizing. It will be interesting to observe if I can coax more roses into blooming next February.

So there are good explanations why I had so few blooms last month, but one thing is really disappointing to me. I have a three year old Tea Rose, 'Georgetown Tea' planted in the ground and Tea Roses are supposed to flower year round here in my climate and that was the main reason why I planted this particular rose in the first place. But 'Georgetown Tea' doesn't have one bloom on it right now, not one. In contrast to all the others, this rose I watered and fertilized throughout the winter season, but that didn't convince it to bloom. Maybe I didn't water and fertilize it enough. It is also planted in between a group of four Queen Anne Palms and it might be too shady for the rose in the winter time to be able to flower. Anyway, for now I have decided that just for experimental reasons I will increase the watering and the regularity in fertilizing of 'Georgetown Tea' and see what happens.

Following are the very few brave roses that dared to bloom in February in our garden:



'Charles Rennie Mackintosh' surprised positively by giving me three flowers.




This rose is still growing only in a two gallon container together with plenty of oxalis (if you are not familiar with it, it is a really obnoxious weed here in my area). 



It wasn't fertilized or cared for in any special way and still managed to be one of my most beautiful roses in February. It certainly deserves more loving attention this year.



'Alexander Hill Gray', a very light yellow Tea Rose, was gifting me with one flower and very sickly foliage. 




The same bud of 'Alexander Hill Gray' a few days later. In this photo the rose looks somehow surreal to me. The color of the canes is really that red, contrasting very strongly with the pale yellow blooms.



Same rose flower again a few days later. The bloom was opening painfully slow, but at least it was opening and not balling and lasted a long time on the little shrub. I always think that 'Alexander Hill Gray' is a particular elegant rose.



This was the very last spray of  'Marie Pavie's' winter flush. Right now she is making good use of the fertilizer and compost that I threw at her feet and producing tons of new leaves and I assume, new flowers are soon to follow.



'Nimbus' was suffering badly from powdery mildew and even black spot last month as you can see when you look at his leaves, but that didn't prevent him from developing one of its gorgeous colored flowers. The shadings of pale pink, mauve, and tan are so subtle, they are very hard to capture with the camera properly, but at least this image gives you an impression.




Here is the same bloom, photographed from above. I like the tussled informal look that the rose flower is taking on in the winter time. I guess, it is mostly due to the low light conditions, which make it hard for the rose to open in a more organized way.



Certainly not a great photo, but I had to show it to you anyway, because I am very excited about this one. The rose that it pictured is 'Old Fashioned Girl', a miniature rose, which is the first rose that is planted into the ground that is producing a spring flower spray this year. So this is my very first "real rose bloom" in 2013! All the other rose flowers that I showed you in this post are coming from roses growing in containers with the exception of 'Marie Pavie', which was still on her winter flush.

'Old Fashioned Girl' is positioned in front of a South-West facing off white wall, which reflects a lot of heat and light and I think that does the trick so that the rose is able to flower this early. Also since it is a miniature rose I didn't prune or deleave it, so there was nothing to set back the onset of the buds this year. Interestingly though, there is a 'Pink Pet' rose growing very close to this rose, also not pruned or deleaved, which is usually a very easy going rose, but it hasn't even set buds, yet. There is always some mystery to growing roses, which you can't explain!

I am very curious to find out what will happen this March in my rose garden. Will I have more roses blooming already or will the spring flush only start in April? I hope you stay tuned and find out together with me.

See you in the garden!

Christina



30 comments:

  1. Dear Christina,
    Good old Charles Rennie Mackintosh. You can always rely on him to come up with the goods.
    No roses here but we are now experiencing a lot of snowdrops which certainly lift the spirits up in this grey old winter...
    Bye for now
    Kirk

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  2. Hi Christina,

    Old Fashioned Girl looks great! I love the first flush of leaves on roses in the spring. Mine are starting to show up and they look so perfectly healthy! Nimbus is also such a pretty bloom. Jeannine

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  3. Your roses are lovely - I came across the oxalis that you are talking about a year ago in Sicily, it was so pretty with its little yellow trumpets, I loved it. On my return home I looked it up and discovered that it is a scourge in the States and difficult to get rid of. My view of it changed, we do not have it here.

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  4. Still a nice selection that bloomed in February Christina :) These good performers are valuable in the garden!

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  5. Hi Christina....Your February roses are very pretty!! I'm looking forward to seeing more of them in March and April. A lot of roses just don't do well here in middle Tennessee. I have three hybrid teas that produce nice flowers, but the foliage is awful no matter what I try. My Knockouts do well and I have one Rugosa. I'm going to try some Floribundas and David Austins this year and see what happens!

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  6. You have roses all year long, Christina ! And your roses are loving you :) Beautiful !

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  7. Dear Christina ~ It is always a joy to see and read about the roses you grow in your gardens. They are all beautiful.

    Love and hugs to you ~ FlowerLady

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  8. What a wonderful goal - to have roses blooming all year long! I am waiting for April - it will be amazing to see the changes between now and then! I'm still pruning, though, so it won't be a big show all at once like I had hoped. Hard to time pruning just right! Good luck with your new pruning schedule. I hope it makes a difference for you.

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  9. Kirk, 'Charles Rennie Mackintosh' does not get that much attention in the US. Of course, I first have to plant him into the ground and observe him a little longer, but it seems to be a very promising rose for my climate. I just love snowdrops! They have so cheerful delicate little flowers! I hope winter fades away soon for you!

    Jeannine, I enjoy the new emerging leaves on the roses very much as well. They will be never as healthy as they are now! I also appreciate that there is such a variety in color, shape, and texture of the rose leaves in between the different varieties and rose classes.

    Rosemary, lucky you that you don't have oxalis, it is truly a pest here. I made the mistake and let it get a hold in my containers where the roses are growing and it is so hard to get rid of, again.

    Mark and Gaz, by now I feel that is all about finding the good rose performers in my garden and climate. There are so many roses out there why bother with a variety that just doesn't love to grow here, when you can have roses that are happy and healthy and grow like gangbusters?

    Christy, thanks, there are just some climates that are not really made for roses to grow well in, but it is great that the Knockouts like it where you are. Hope you find some more varieties that thrive in your garden. Asking the local rose society or other gardeners that grow a lot of roses what varieties are good for you could help. Good luck!

    Dani, thanks, I always think that it is such a gift to be able to grow roses all year long!

    Lorraine, I am happy that you enjoy looking and reading about my roses. Sometimes I think I ramble on too much about them, but I love them so much, somehow I can't help it ;-)!

    Holley, usually April is the time here as well where I get the main spring flush. It never fails to amaze me each year how much a roses garden changes between March and April. I am so excited to see the miracle of the spring flush happen again.

    Christina




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  10. Your roses are so gorgeous Christina. Overhere no flowers since november last year I am happy to see the new eyes of the foliage. It promisses a lot of flowers begin of June.
    Have a wonderful day.

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  11. Liebe Christina,
    es ist schon interessant, aber es scheint so, als
    ob Rosen, trotz durchgängig mildem Klima, einfach
    eine Pause einlegen. Es hat vielleicht garnichts mit
    dem Schneiden zu tun? Ich bin gespannt, wie es dann
    nächstes Jahr wird. Aber trotzdem hast du wunderschöne
    Rosenbilder machen können. Bei uns ist seit dem Wochenende
    endlich der dicke Schnee fast weg und die Schneeglöckchen
    sind am Blühen. Aber von Rosen natürlich noch keine Spur.
    Hach, da würde ich zur Zeit gern mit dir tauschen ;-)
    Ganz viele liebe Grüße Urte

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  12. Exciting to learn that you have roses flowering the year round. We have our first sunny spring days and I started rose pruning today, first flowers will come out end of May (I hope). From that time flowering goes on until frost starts in November.
    I have Charles Rennie Macintosh in my garden for already 20 years. It is not a very strong rose in our climate, but every year I have some nice flowers. I am surprised you have such a beautiful flowers in only a 2 gallon pot, I suppose you gave him lots of feed.

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  13. Je pense qu’après la taille faite récemment, il est peut être un peu tôt pour avoir des roses. J'ai lu sur un magasine qu'il faut compter trois mois après la taille pour obtenir une belle moisson de roses. Avec l'engrais que tu as distribué, les rosiers seront en mars mais surtout en avril couverts de roses.Je viendrai voir le résultat,il sera enchanteur.
    Belle soirée de France jocelyne

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  14. Quelle jolie fotos !! J`adore c`est MAGNIFIQUE!! :0)

    Bonne semaine !!!

    xxx Maria xxx

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  15. Marijke, thanks for you kind words about my roses. I know the joy that one can feel, when the new leave buds of the roses are swelling!

    Urte, from the observations in my own garden I would agree that roses have a genetically programmed inclination to take a break in winter from their flowering and leave production, with the exception of the Tea Roses (maybe). But with certain garden practices you can get them to bloom year round in a very mild climates. I truly love snowdrops but this is one flower that we seem not to be able to grow here. You can't have it all and that is fine with me :-)!

    Janneke, how interesting that you are growing 'Charles Rennie Mackintosh' as well! I would love to see a photo of your 20 year old specimen. Maybe you will post one on your blog this summer? Actually I didn't feed my CRM at all. That is why I am so surprised that he was blooming for me in the winter time.

    Jocelyne, I always wanted to observe how long it exactly takes my roses to produce the next flush of blooms after pruning. I think they need somewhere between 8 - 12 weeks in my climate. But you might be right and it is closer to 12 weeks than 8. I hope I can take many photos when the roses are flowering this spring and post them on the blog.

    Maria, thanks for your nice comment!

    Christina

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  16. What a lovely batch of blooms! It looks like summer to me. It's fun to see the differences in the seasons in different areas of the country. Thanks for stopping by my blog.

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  17. I can not wait for roses here, but it will be June before I see any. You have some beautiful ones blooming now! That is a lot of blooms on your miniature rose, I never have much luck with them.

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  18. Sue, thanks, I also love the glimpse that I get into the different climate zones by reading other people's blogs!

    Catherine, miniature roses are supposed to be "easy", but I also had more problems with them then with the hybrid teas or floribundas for example. I got all of my minis as bands and when they come they are so tiny, it is difficult for me not to over or under water them. But when they survive their baby state in my garden and have reached a certain size, they seemed to be fine.

    Christina

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  19. I am pretty sure you will have blooms in March. But, we will keep our fingers crossed and watch. You really have healthy looking plants. My plants produce lots of flowers but hardly any leaves!! Do all these roses smell good?

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  20. KL, actually not all of my roses are healthy, but I try to select roses that are supposed to be disease resistant when I buy them and then I test them for about three years in my garden. When they are showing severe disease problems by then I remove them no matter how beautiful the blooms are and replace them with a new variety. Most of my roses are fragrant since this is very important to me, but not all of them. Interesting that your roses are producing many flowers but only a few leaves. I would assume that leaves are necessary to give the rose the energy to develop the flowers.

    Christina

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  21. Thanks so much for stopping by my blog. I'm adding your blog to my blogroll.

    Freda

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  22. Hi Freda, thanks for your comment and also for adding me to your blogroll! It is always nice to be listed on other people's blogs!

    Christina

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  23. Hallo Christina,

    vielen Dank für deinen netten Kommentar!
    Dein blog gefällt mir auch sehr gut. Es ist intertessant zu sehen, dass in Kalifornien die Rosen offenbar das ganze Jahr durchblühen. Leider ist die google-Übersetzung grottenschlecht und mein Schul-Englisch nicht brauchbar, aber man kann sich den Sinn zusammenreimen.

    Liebe Grüße

    Vera

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  24. Hi Vera, thanks for your comment and for becoming a follower! Sorry that the Google translation doesn't work that well, but I guess it is better than nothing :-)!

    Christina

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  25. Where are the March roses :-)? Waiting for them.

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  26. KL, I wait for the March roses as well ;-)! There are not many roses blooming in my garden right now :-(. Hopefully I will have some more photos to post by the end of this month or in the beginning of April.

    Christina

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  27. Hi Christina....you have so many beautiful Roses...Erwin

    http://e-schriefer.blogspot.de/

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  28. Hi Erwin, welcome to my blog and thanks for your kind comment!

    Christina

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