(left click all images to enlarge)
The wonderful smells of roses were always the first order of enjoyment for me. I can recall walking to school as a child and smelling this fresh bank of roses on the way. Clustered and climbing along some fence pathway, all in a tight bunch in the (in this case Red) “pink” of health, the odor was something else entirely. It set itself as a goal in my mind of what was possible. It was only later that I discovered the full outright beauty of the blooms themselves. For me, it was always the smell.
Many of these roses here are from the Portland Oregon Rose Garden. There are a few I took of a lady’s garden who lived across from me on Klikitat Drive in Portland. She was 78 years old and she grew 250 roses in her front, side and rear yards. Here’s one of hers. Her name was Elizabeth and she was a retired teacher. I admire her tremendously to this very day.
She was pretty fussy about intruders, but when she heard I landscaped, it was honestly pretty hard not to be neighborly and do the “over the fence” thing with such a kind-hearted and thoroughly wonderful person. I’m talking every day. 😉 Her battles with Black Spot and mildew in a climate such as Portland, Oregon’s were legendary to me. And, man, did she ever have a lot of plants she was Mom of. Here is some of her Phlox – also a great smeller.
I took her to the Portland Rose Garden more than once. I found myself looking forward to these trips. I was separated from my daughter at the time and I missed a family kind of connection. She and I met somewhere in the heart and it was real good that way.
The Rose Garden also had a great amphitheater for concerts and what not. I always just liked its rather placid look, even without the rockers who filled it up on Summer nights. I hate to say this, but I think I saw Billy Idol here.
Anyway…….on with the roses from the Rose Garden:
I have gotten particularly impressed with climbing roses. They fit so very many landscaping applications, from actual climbing up arbors to cascading downwards in the nicest messes.
Their blooms seem to come in such a wide riot of colors:
I used to hate planting them, they seemed so fussy. But once I got it down, I realized there were some very standard principles for pretty much all of them. Good, well-drained soil, some fertilizing now and then and some strict homeowner attention to diseases, bugs and all the various little fungi and such which can plague a rose lover. And water – lots of water.
This is actually a Rose of Sharon shrub/tree. But why quibble?
I’m such a rose maven now that I like the Miniatures as much as any others. Check out the splendid detail of these small wonders.
Between my friend Elizabeth and the Rose Garden in Portland, I think I made some sort of transition into real appreciation for this picky plant. The blooms themselves can make a real believer out of one.
You’ve got to love this crazy plant – 😉
Anything else would be Uncivilized!