New Pictures of the Rose and
little tune for those light feet
This winter, we took the plunge again and did major planting in the Rose and Perennial Court.
From Jane's Herbs & Things, we got twenty new old-fashioned own-root shrubs, all but two of which went in front: Princesse de Sagan (pink bicolor), Clotilde Soupert (Polyantha white scented), Archduke Charles (China red),Dr. Grill (Tea apricot/pink), Heritage (David Austen light pink),Mme. Alfred Carierre (Noisette white climbing), Perle D'Or (Polyantha apricot scented), Landmark (Shrub especially lovely light pink),Erfurt (Hybrid Musk small light pink single flowers in clusters),Spice (Shrub small white), Natchitoches Noisette (Found pink),Radiance (Shrub medium pink heavily scented),Papa Contier (Shrub medium pink), Ducher (China, a large, well-grown, bushy specimen, white scented) were planted in the circle. Mme. Lombard (Tea apricot/pink),Reve D'Or (Noisette yellow climbing scented), Souvenir de la Malmaison (Bourbon white/pink scented - this is my second try with this one), and Mrs. Dudley Cross (Tea cream) went on the north side of the path. Dortmund (Climber clusters of single red flowers with white centers) and Claire Matin (Climber light pink single flowers in clusters) were planted to climb a post in the Herb Circle, across from Prosperity (Hybrid Musk clusters of white flowers), which has grown quite a bit since last year and now reaches the top of the arch.
From Home Depot came four Hybrid Teas, which I don't expect to last long, but were too pretty to resist:Sunsprite (yellow and very like Yellow Spice), Dolly Parton (bright orange and heavily-scented, like Tropicana but with more petals),Blue Girl (heavily-scented light purple like Sterling Silver - planted this among some Purple Queen for a terrific color combination), and one that was a reddish purple rimmed in crimson, similar to Angel Face but with a larger flower; also two miniature bicolor roses, one yellow with a red picotee, and one pink and white candy-cane striped. All of these went in the circle.
Care was taken with color combinations
when planting - for instance, Perle D'Or, with its delicate apricot blooms,
went in front of some Jamaican Crotons, which have burgundy foliage splashed
with cream - most satisfying. All weedings (except seeded ones,
dayflowers, and nutgrass) were laid back in the beds around the new plantings
as mulch - this has the added effect of making the new plants look like they
have been there a while.
Of course, since these are very young roses, they will not have loads of flowers until they are better established, maybe in two or three years. At this point though, there wasn't a lot of color to show for all that hard work, which is a let-down even when you know you'll be rewarded in the future. So I did something new for us - went to Home Depot and got: twenty-four small pots and a flat of short Snapdragons, twenty-six tall Snapdragons in all colors, four flats of dwarf blue/purple Ageratums, and one flat of all-white Periwinkles (Vincas). These annuals were all chosen for their heat-tolerance and quality of long-standing in the garden. The tall snaps got placed in front of the roses on the inside of the circle, the short snaps went in front of those, and then the entire inside of the circle was lined with ageratums. Instant color pop!
I also separated some of the large blue
irises and moved extras around the inside of the circle. The
white periwinkles were planted in a line fronting the north side of the path,
under the roses but behind a single layer of Blackie sweet potato, which has
now spread all over the mound and made a low groundcover for this bed as
Looking at the walk to the front door from the driveway revealed good
texture contrasts, but too little color at ground level, so I planted a Spider
Plant (yup - ye old standard houseplant) with white margins in
this shady corner for a starting punctuation point, and seven magenta
dwarf Pentas in a couple of spots along the path, which solved that
problem very nicely. The Spider Plant has wider leaves and wider
margins, so it makes more of a statement in this spot than a liriope
would. This picture shows some of the new pentas, but the young spider plant
is not too visible under the variegated ligustrum at the corner.
I like the view from the driveway on the
southwest corner because the combination of foliage colors is pleasing to me
This area just keeps getting better, in my opinion, because the textures
and colors are interweaving and layering themselves as Irises walk, blue
Spiderworts and pink upright Ruellias seed, and purple
groundcover Ruellias and pink Portulacas creep. Silouhetted
against the stark light driveway, there are appear to be some empty spots, but
these will fill in as the bushier new roses planted there grow. Ducher,
for instance is a robust
Below is a truly awful pasting together of
snapshots, but it does give a true impression of what it feels like to stand
on the path looking at the center of the circle, and the proportions involved.
Ours is a small garden, so it's pretty amazing to think of the number of
roses it contains!
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