A Bed of Roses

IMGP8565Everyone in Gainesville should be growing gardens full of roses!  They grow here like nowhere else I have ever seen, as evidenced by the fact that I have many, many rose bushes blooming, yet I have managed to kill all my mint.  Even my black thumb cannot kill these beauties that grow with abandon.

IMGP8571Granted, I have never done a single thing to them, other than enjoy and photograph them, and in the back, I have pulled vines that threatened to strangle them.  My husband sometimes decides that my crazily growing rose, one of the ones I actually selected and organized the planting of, needs to be pruned and cuts off much of the bush.  It then grows back, bigger and crazier than ever.  This one blooms almost all year, so he has to time his ministrations carefully.

IMGP8556TIMGP8575he smaller, paler pink one is also one that I chose.  This one came from WalMart, I believe, from the clearance section.  It grows well, although not with complete abandon, and doesn’t bloom as often as the larger one.  Since being planted, the only thing it has needed has been removing Spanish moss from its branches.  It was small when we first got it, as is typical from a garden center, but now it’s about 4′ tall and bushy.  The blooms are gorgeously striated with nearly white and darker pink, and the layers and layers of petals make it lush.  While I love the wildly blooming bright pink rose, the delicacy of coloring on this one tugs at my heart in a special way that the brighter pink just can’t complete with.

It is lovely that I have the two of them, though, and that they fill me with cheer each time I pull into the driveway.   It was my husband’s idea to put the roses there, at the end of the drive, below a maple tree, and I am always glad that he came up with that idea.

This classically elegant rose blooms least of all.  This is the kind of rose you see in a florist’s shop, but it smells divine.  Of all my driveway roses, this is the best smelling. It was another WalMart rose, bought in the clearance section, planted and nearly forgotten.  We ignored it for years after planting, and we thought that this one had died when it was choked with Spanish moss and weeds a year or two ago. My husband tended to it and removed the weeds, and it came back more beautiful than ever.  It is a long, leggy rose that probably could benefit from some selective pruning, but I will leave that up to my husband.  I’d much rather not test my black thumb on this beautiful flower!  If I were the type to bring my flowers indoors, this would be the one to clip for a bud vase.

IMGP8552It amazes me how well my roses grow.  There don’t seem to be many aphids or other destructive insects for roses around here.  Yet for some reason, there are not rose gardens all over town.  I am imploring you, citizens of Gainesville, put your yards to good use and grow some roses!

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