Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Managing One Rose

When I moved into this house, I brought a choice old rose from my first garden. It appears to be a nineteenth century (or earlier) cultivar that was bred to produce scented petals for potpourri. The blossoms are heavily doubled, pink verging on lavender, and new stems are nearly thornless.

The plant is now heavily shaded by new construction, and it has not had a stellar year for quite a while. For the time being, I'll leave it where it is, consider moving a start to a more benign spot in the garden, and continue the expedient grooming that allows me to deal easily with the tangled thicket of stems, morning glory, and aggressive perennials that routinely develops in what was once a sweet spot.

Counting on a volunteer to man the mower I use to generate sheet compost on the sunny west lawn, I simply bring out a sharp scythe, cut hands (a brush-picker's unit of measurement that speaks for itself) of thicket, walked them to the lawn, and whack them into units short enough for the mower to shred.

What once took a morning now requires twenty aerobic minutes. I mow the rose area to groom the remnants of the harvest, and the process encourages runners that will be easy to separate and share -30-


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