Well, I guess I am the last person to participate in the March End of Month View meme, hosted by Helen, at The Patient Gardener. Sorry, my dear readers, but life has interfered with blogging again and I was only able to finish this post today. I sincerely hope that despite the delay you are still interested in following the process of changing my Front Yard Side Bed.
So lets get right to it. If you compare the photo above, taken March 29th, and the photo below from the end of February, the biggest visible changes are, that the roses have started to bloom and that the alstroemeria 'Little Miss Sophie' is missing. Between February and the end of March the bed has been weeded over not only once but twice, since the weeds thrive on the new mulch and the fertilizer that was put down in February. Especially dandelions are having a ball and, as every one knows who has been dealing with them, they are very hard to remove. But in addition to that, in this bed their roots are entangled with the roots of the Queen Palms to the right and it is almost impossible to get the full root of the dandelions out. And, of course, if that can not be done, you turn away from the bed for a second and the next thing you know they are back. Well, I know I will be busy playing this game with them for quite a while...
Rosa 'Our Lady of Guadalupe' is blooming her head off as usual and for that reason probably none of your will understand on the first glance, why I have made my final decision to remove this rose.
Before I move on, I want to apologize for the quality of the photos in this post. I was only able to take the pictures for it around noon on March 29th. It never leads to great images if you photograph in the middle of the day with the harsh sun light that we are already having at this time of the year, but I had no other choice.
Yes, it is true that the blooms of 'Our Lady of Guadalupe' are very pretty. I myself have to admit that in the first place I fell completely in love with the silvery pink flowers, which show up in great profusion with each flush.
But if you look closely at the foliage, you see it is very infected with powdery mildew. It doesn't seem to prevent the rose from blooming prolifically though, which is a miracle in itself, because usually if mildew is that present in a rose, the flower production is affected. Still, this diseased foliage bugs me tremendously. And it happens every year, when the climatic conditions are right, means cool nights and warm days, which we have very often here in San Diego. So even though it is hard, rosa 'Our Lady of Guadalupe' will go into the trash bin.
I do have two more plants of this variety in the front yard though and I will keep these for now, so the separation from this rose is not as painful as it would be, if I would completely eradicate this variety form my garden.
If you aren't convinced yet, here is one more "yucky photo". See the powdery mildew not just on the leaves but also on the buds? You have to admit it is really disgusting.
This is alstroemeria 'Little Miss Sophie' on March 19th, the day it was taken out of this bed. But don't worry, I didn't get rid off this one.
The best parts of the plant where potted up carefully in five gallon containers using good potting soil. I got five new plants out of it, like pictured above, but I gave one to my faithful and hard working gardener already. I am sure it will not be difficult to find a new home for another one and the rest I intend to transplant to the backyard.
This is rosa 'Charles Darwin', which has nicely bulked up between February and March and has produced a lot of buds.
Unfortunately there was a little mishap with this rose. If you look at the shot above, which shows 'Charles Darwin' from the back, you see that in the center of the rose and in the center of the outer lower side of it there are "holes". For reasons unknown to me a couple of canes just died back last month. I thought about rodent damage, but I couldn't find any traces, like holes in the ground or bite marks on the canes, of them. I hope, that the rose won't loose any further canes by now and that it will fill back in eventually.
This month I intend to remove 'Our Lady of Guadalupe' and make a decision which two roses out of my pot ghetto should go into this bed. Finding rose colors that will go well together will be a fun and challenging task at the same time. But also the mature bush form and growth habit has to be taken in consideration. I hope that I am able to make pleasant rose matches and that I get at least one new rose planted, ideally two. But since my soil is so hard to dig I probably have to be realistic and only expect one new rose to be in ground by next End of Month View post. I hope you stop by again and see what roses have made the grade.
Until then, if you haven't done it yet, I urge you to stop by at Helen's End of Month View meme and take a look what has happened in other people's gardens in March.
Wishing all of you a great week!
See you in the garden!
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