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Update: life, garden, roses

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Update: life, garden, roses

Post by muscovyduckling on 23rd March 2015, 09:10

Hi folks,

You've probably noticed I've been pretty absent from the forum over spring and summer. Some of you will know that my beloved greyhound Teddy was diagnosed with a very nasty cancer last spring, and we let him go shortly afterwards. I've been a bit miserable about it, but we've adopted another grey for our remaining kelpie x whippet girl to boss around, and he's settling in well, so I'm trying to get back on the wagon now.

The garden has sort of gone to hell over summer as I had not been keeping on top of it, and it's going to be a big job getting it back into shape. Weeding had begun now that we're having some cooler days, and my new little chickens are helping out immensely with turning the weeds into compost. But there's still a lot to go, and there are only so many weeds that five little bantams can eat, so it will take some time.

Work was becoming a real struggle for me too, so I've reduced my hours drastically, from 50 hours in four days, to one 11 hour shift per week. I try to work an overtime shift every week to avoid going broke, but even so it's a big difference and I hope to begin noticing the difference soon.

I've also enrolled in a short course in Permaculture, which I attend one day per week for 6 months. Its very interesting so far and will be super helpful with planning and managing the garden.

Now to the roses. Well, there have been some real stand-outs, and some complete failures. Munstead Wood has been the most incredible rose in my garden. It was slower to get started than the teas, but it hasn't taken a break all spring and summer, and looks like it will go on blooming into the autumn. The little tea Anna Olivier has been fabulous too, and blooms in bug flushes in quick succession. The little china, Sophie's Perpetual, was also a winner here, with very pretty mid-pink blooms and a respectable fragrance for a china. Surprisingly, Souv. de la Malmaison (bush version) has done very well too. Unfortunately the climber was dead when it arrived.

A couple of the roses haven't flowered all year - namely, Alba Semi Plena, Aimee Vibert and Mme Alfred Carrier. I was very excited about the two Noisettes, so I will wait until next year before passing judgement. I guess the Semi Plena will do better next year too, as I expect the severe pruning it received at bare root time prevented it from blooming in spring.

Buff Beauty and Zephirine Drouin have died. I think this has more to do with site prep and planting than any fault on the roses' part. They were planted on their own in heavy clay, and whilst I did amend the planting holes, I didn't prepare whole beds for them like I did for most of the others.

I have a few mistake roses too - Charles Rene Mackintosh has turned out to be some pale apricot thing that I'm not particularly enamoured with, and Glamis Castle looks to be the same mystery imposter. I'm not terribly upset as I would have given these two away anyway, after smelling their horrid "myrrh" scent at a garden in Perth.

This winter, I'll move some roses around and I hope to prepare some more beds for the roses I currently have in pots, as they don't seem to do as well as those in the ground. This is most likely due to the fact that I am an infrequent waterer! I'll order some more roses - maybe only 5 or so this year - and this year I will focus on teas as they have been the most hardy and floriferous bunch in my garden this year, excepting Munstead Wood.
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muscovyduckling

Number of posts : 771
Location : Dandenong Ranges, Melbourne
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Re: Update: life, garden, roses

Post by The Lazy Rosarian on 24th March 2015, 06:18

Hi Zoe, rough times kiddo, things will turn around I am sure. The bright side might be a way off but it is better than the dark side. Been there done that. You forgot to mention the newbies name, I am sure he/she will settle into your life style pretty easily.
The 3 that are taking their time might come good in their second year in the ground. Some of this could be contributed to the plant when it came from the nursery and it's rootstock condition. If you have the time or inclination I would take as many cuttings from what you have and strike them, nothing ventured, nothing gained. If you can get Munstead Wood to strike, how would a hedge of it look, in my minds eye, b..... wonderful. I am only an email/phone away if you want any help.
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The Lazy Rosarian

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Re: Update: life, garden, roses

Post by muscovyduckling on 24th March 2015, 08:27

Yep, I think it would look ace! It would make a seriously thorny hedge too Smile

New boy is called Laddie. His racing name was Wee Laddie and it kinda stuck. He's a goofball.
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muscovyduckling

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Re: Update: life, garden, roses

Post by The Lazy Rosarian on 24th March 2015, 12:24

It might rub off on his new owner  roflmao
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The Lazy Rosarian

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Re: Update: life, garden, roses

Post by silkyfizz on 24th March 2015, 19:48

Zoe, I'm so sorry to hear about the passing of Teddy. Our pets give us so much joy and love but it's devastating when they pass on. Both my boys are elderly now and both have cancer so every day is a bonus. I hope Laddie eases things for you and makes you laugh.
I'm glad to hear you've cut down your work hours. It should give you some more time and energy to enjoy watching the bantams and dogs and seeing your garden grow. Munstead Wood sounds like he likes the Dandenongs a tad more than here. While I'm pleased with mine, its growth and blooms haven't really overwhelmed me this year. A hedge of Munsteads would be awesome!
Good luck with all those roses that didn't fire, I'm sure they just need more time to hit their straps.
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Re: Update: life, garden, roses

Post by The Estate on 9th April 2015, 16:29

Pleasing to hear those who choose to adopt and not buy from pet shops, esp greyhounds after recent out cries
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The Estate

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Re: Update: life, garden, roses

Post by muscovyduckling on 9th April 2015, 20:29

Thanks Silky Smile Sorry to hear about your old boys.

And The Estate - you know it's funny, I don't think you could buy a pet greyhound puppy, even if you wanted too. No-one breeds them for the pet trade. If greyhound racing was banned I think the breed would probably die out in Oz.

Anyway, when is this so-called Autumn Flush supposed to happen? Nothing's happening here. Just little old Munstead Wood, still going for gold.
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Re: Update: life, garden, roses

Post by silkyfizz on 9th April 2015, 21:12

Hmmm, autumn flush. Dunno about that. Some of my roses haven't actually stopped blooming since summer, well spring really, and others are clearly starting to wind down. I haven't noticed any that shut down over summer and then woke up again in autumn. Then again here in Melbourne we've had quite a mild summer and extended balmy days so far this autumn.
One plant that is confused is one of my cymbidiums which is pushing through a packed flower stem. Crazy.
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Re: Update: life, garden, roses

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