Sunday, March 31, 2013

An Easter Story

I hope it isn't too sacrilegious to post this story, but I am so pleased.  Three years ago, in spring of 2010 my climbing American Beauty roses were finally mature enough to put on their once-a-year incredible bloom flush.  It had taken me four years to grow the roses from gallon pots to climbing from the ground to the deck and then to climb over the trellises above the swing.  They were awesome.  Here are some photos of them that year:
Climbing American Beauty Roses (2010)

Roses from the Side (2010)
 Then, you may remember, my next-door neighbor cut all my roses to the ground.  Darkness kept her from cutting the second of the two American Beauties and my hysterical screaming kept her away from my roses the next day.  It has taken three years, but the roses have grown back up and look like they're going to put on the same show this year.

2013 Climbing American Beauty Roses
Just a few of the roses have opened but the majority of the buds have broken color.  I'm expecting them to pop this week or next.  Exciting!  The horticulturist at the Antique Rose Emporium (which has since closed its San Antonio location) told me to put Rose Tone on them and pray back in 2010.  I did and they lived.  Bless them!  I think they may be the only plants that she cut back that did live.

I recently reread Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden. It was one of my favorite books as a child.  However, I didn't realize how much it influenced both my ideas of gardening and my ideas about religion.  I think I may have finally achieved something like my own Secret Garden.  Today's photos didn't turn out as well as I'd have liked, but here are a few of them:

I only have two hybrid tea roses in the garden.  They don't do as well in South Texas as I'd like.  Mostly, I have David Austin roses and antiques.  The climbing American Beauty roses are antiques.  Tamora is a David Austin rose.  Here's the garden:
The Secret Garden
Again, not the best photo.  I'll try to get more when the Beauties bloom.


  1. Love the roses climbing up and over the swing- very romantic. I am curious about the story concerning your neighbor who cut down your rose plants...what happened and why in the earth would someone do that?

  2. Hi there! Sorry to have not answered in so long. We've been on the road again and I haven't checked my blog.

    Thank you! I love my roses over the porch swing. I guess I just have a strong vein of the romantic in me!

    To make a long story short (there is a blog post about the incident) we live in a complex where the land is held in common. Potted plants are considered private property, and I grow my roses in large pots. My neighbor fancies herself a master gardener and thought that since the roses weren't blooming when she was here that they needed pruning back. Climbing American Beauty roses bloom only once a year and she didn't know that. So as a helpful surprise for me, she cut my roses back to the ground. Without asking. The problem is... okay, ONE problem is that May in South Texas is NOT the time to cut roses back, even roses that need to be severely pruned before the growing season. Needless to say, we seldom speak now.