Rick believes one of the most widely planted and loved plants
in our part of the country is the Rose. They come in almost
all shapes and sizes. There are a lot of Heirloom or Old
Garden Variety of Roses. They are great plants because they
have been around a long time and have an incredible fragrance.
Robert Stoney, Horticulturist, with Barnsley Gardens in
Adairsville, Georgia will show us many of the varieties
in their gardens.
Stoney introduces us to Barnsley Gardens and the home created
by Godfrey Barnsley in the 1840's and 50's. Barnsley created
a showplace for plants and gardening at that time and under
the direction of Robert it is a showplace today. Barnsley
loved and specialized in Roses. We look at many of Barnsleys'
Roses today and discuss how to prune them, how to feed them
and discuss disease control. Robert prefers these Old Time
Roses because they are survivors, many of them date back
to the 16th century. Most, though, were developed and bred
in the 18th and 19th century. They are remarkably hardy,
very few develop Black Spot or Mildew and they have a wonderful
Robert shows us Old Blush or Monthly Rose. This Rose comes
in flushes of blooms every month. It is the last Rose of
the summer and often will flower into December. It dates
to the later part of the 18th century and has been used
in breeding a great number of old fashioned Roses. Another
Rose that would have been in Barnsley's collection is the
Chestnut Rose, so called because the little buds, before
the flower opens, look exactly like chestnuts. This Rose
came from China in thelater part of the 18th century and
is resistant to diseases. In the winter it has a chest nutty
exfoliated bark and looks quite decorative. It is a large
Rose and makes a wonderful hedgerow because it creates a
terrific barrier because it is well armed with thorns. The
Chinese Variable Rose changes color as the bloom ages. It
starts out as a bud rather Apricot in color, then turns
a creamy yellow, over the coarse of two days it darkens
to pink, eventually changing to a deep Cerise color.
The Green Rose is more a curiosity than beauty but a signature
plant for Barnsley Gardens. It produces masses of Calyx
like leaflets and has a smell of freshly ground pepper.
The Galica Rose dates way back in history and has a wonderful
aroma. These Roses are not repeat bloomers, they bloom in
the spring only. They have a wonderful perfume, a combination
of scent of musk and attar of Roses. The foliage is clean
and free of diseases, resistant to what nature might throw
at it. The Moss Rose dates back to the last kings and queens
of France, the last part of the 18th century. Its' history
Empress Josephine, made roses more famous and popular than
anyone else. The plants we have today date back to early
times because these plants came from cuttings from other
plants all the way back to the original plant one of which
might have been grown in Josephine's garden. These Roses
are a piece of history, more tangible and satisfying than
something in a museum. New Dawn is the one concession to
the 20th century at Barnsley Gardens. This Rose is a climber
and will cover the arbor. To train its' growth push the
sprays and branches up through or over the wires and lodge
Robert feels that one thing a gardener should do is make
time to sit back and enjoy your garden. There is always
something else to do, but appreciate the display.
Mermaid, is a large, sprawling, vigorous, climber. It needs
a lot of space but has a gorgeous, big, single bloom with
five pedals. It has a lemon perfume with bud after bud appearing.
Big black ants have started to work on the buds this year,
eating the nectar at the base of the petal. Robert will
take a wait and see approach to see if the problem persists
before treating with anything.
Although most Old Roses are resistant to disease, Robert
notices one with Downy Mildew. Normally his cure for this
disease would be to try another variety of Rose, one less
susceptible to Mildew. This Rose variety called Vanity gets
Mildew every year. Mildew is caused by poor air circulation
and stop and go growing conditions. Particularly in the
early spring when there is vigorous growth, then cold. The
plant slows and Mildew starts. If possible "evenize"
the growing conditions by judicious watering or increased
ventilation. If that fails you can use bio-compatible sprays.
These won't hurt the beneficial bugs and bees, dogs or children
and are widely available in garden shops. You can make your
own mixture by mixing baking soda and oil. In a gallon of
water add a teaspoon of baking soda, then add a drop of
Canola or most edible oils and a drop of vinegar. Spray
the mix on the plants till the liquid drops off the leaves.
Do this every 7-10 days if the problem comes back, which
is rare. Don't put too much oil in the mix because it can
scorch the leaves. This should clear Mildew from Roses very
Robert discusses a Rose with three problems, Rust, Mildew
and Black spot. All three diseases are caused by poor circulation
and generally speaking from reinfection of diseases. Garden
hygiene is important. You'll probably never completely rid
your garden and Roses of Black Spot. Clear leaves and debris
from underneath every Rose bush to stop or at least slow
the reinfection process. The bio-compatible fungicide mentioned
earlier works well on these diseases, as does Flower Sulfur.
The most effective method is choosing Rose varieties that
are resistant to the above diseases.
A trouble free Rose is Polyanthus Rose, Pearl Door. It is
resistant to Black Spot, Rust and Mildew. It has an Apricot
bloom and a beautiful, light perfume. It remains a neat,
small shrub rose.
Pruning Roses is easy. It is always a good time of year
to cut dead wood from roses. It is probably best in late
spring because you can see what is dead wood and what isn't.
Deadheading gives you a chance to be near your Roses and
enjoy them. Deadheading encourages the flowers to continue
blooming. Take off the entire head (not just the dead petals)
with the fruiting body, the little fruit behind the rose.
That tricks the Rose into thinking that it hasn't set seed
and it tries to produce new seeds, or flowers, thereby encouraging
flowering throughout the summer. To do this you can use
pruners or scissors, either bare handed or with gloves,
whatever is more comfortable to you.
Climbing Polyantha Rose, Platulus Superb, is a wonderful
Rose, very rampant, different habit, unruly and tends to
sprawl. It has a wonderful scent and a repeat bloomer, it
will go on all summer. In Wet weather, a wet spring, it
bulls and the Roses may stop at the bud stage and never
open. They have Boytritis, which is mold which causes the
flowers to just brown and drop off. Deadheading, removing
the infected buds, will allow the plant to produce blooms
later in the summer.
Godfrey Barnsley died just short of his 70th birthday, in
1873. He was an extraordinary businessman and horticulturist
with a particular fondness for Roses. On his gravestone
is his family crest, a Yorkshire Rose and the Latin inscription
which roughly translated says "As the Rose, so is life."
Sometimes thorny and sometimes fragrant."
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