Sunday, December 13, 2009

My Climbing Red Rose

This is a couple of blooms from my Dublin Bay rose. Dublin Bay is a large flowered climber. It doesn't have any smell that I can detect, but does put out these deep red blooms that really last a long time on the plant. I had to have at least one red climbing rose on my fence and took quite a long time deciding on Dublin Bay. From what I have researched, red climbers typically are prone to blackspot and are not very vigorous. This one got about 50% leaf loss this year but seems to be healthy enough to take it. A few sprayings would probably help it a lot. These lovely blooms make me want to keep it.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Snow On My Plants

It's not often that I get to post pictures of my plants covered in snow, so bear with me! This first is a picture of my "rock" garden. It's a square on the side of my house that was once only limestone and now has become basically a jungle. I don't think all the tropicals in the area will appreciate the snow cover.

This is a neat picture of my crape myrtle tree with snow falling.

These are some of my daylilies covered in snow. I don't think they mind all that much. They'll come back stronger than ever next year.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

A Picture Says a Thousand Words

Two pictures of my Earthsong rose taken the same day.

This just doesn't happen that often in my part of the world. It's even more rare this early in the year - it's not even officially winter yet!

Friday, December 4, 2009

End of Season Rose Bushes

I'm posting some pictures of my rose bushes just before our first hard freeze that is predicted for tonight. This is a nice way of seeing how they end up the year. Of course this is not all of my roses, but it gives an idea.

First up is Mrs. B. R. Cant. This rose is looking it's best of the whole year. If the freeze would not come tonight, there would be a plethora of new blooms tomorrow. There must be 30 buds on this plant right now getting ready to bloom. Not a speck of disease to be seen.

Westerland is looking long and lanky, but that's what I want it to do. New canes are coming up from the roots already, as you can see in this picture. Quite a healthy plant with no noticeable disease.

Double Knockout is blooming its fool head off right now. The cool weather of the last month has worked wonders with this plant. I've trimmed it back a couple of times this year just to keep it within bounds. A huge, healthy, easy plant.

You can see just a little disease on the leaves of Earthsong, but not enough to make much difference. I'd say maybe 15% leaf loss from blackspot. It hasn't affected the blooms as they are as huge and beautiful as ever. The plant itself is not very big, but it packs a florific punch and was seldom without blooms all year.

Dublin Bay lost maybe 40% of its leaves to blackspot. It hasn't grown as fast as Westerland, but is still relatively healthy for me. I'd say that's good enough for a red climber. In this area most red climbing roses are disease magnets.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Double Your Pleasure

I find that my Double Knockout is much more "double" with the onset of cool weather. The blooms are much more full than they were back in the summer. I still contend that Double Knockout has a much more "rosey" look than the original, plus it's just as easy and florific. They grow almost anywhere and require no maintenance whatsoever. Why not try them as a hedge?

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Early December Colors of Fall

It's amazing how many warm season blooms are stil going strong for me now. I'm afraid they will all end by Saturday of this week as we are forecast to have temperatures in the upper 20's by then. The fall colors of red, orange, and yellow are in full display in these blooms. I didn't realize until after the pictures were taken that the wrong date was being displayed. These pictures were all taken on 12/2/09.

There are yet a few blooms to be seen on my Sensation Yellow cosmos. These are on a volunteer plant that came up after my originals were played out.

The Black-eyed Susan vine has only bloomed better and better as the year wore on. It will die with the freeze and will be completely replaced next year on the mailbox by a native honeysuckle. This is its last hurrah.

The tropical butterfly weed (asclepias curassavica)is still blooming away. I never saw any monarch caterpillars, but plenty of butterflies stopped by to taste the nectar.

The Mexican Cigar plant was a favorite of the hummingbirds this year and I'll definitely keep it. I'll mulch it up pretty well this week and hope if survives the winter. Such a curious and neat little plant. Incidentally, I saw a lonely female hummingbird visiting this plant just two days ago. I don't know what she was doing around here at this time of year.