Everything’s coming up roses

by Andrea Cooley

Adam gave me a trellis for our fifth anniversary (we give traditional anniversary gifts and year five is wood) last August and promised to get me a climbing rose bush for it this spring. This weekend we introduced Reba (yes, we name many things in our house) to our backyard.

Isn’t she lovely? Her official name is “Garden Sun Climbing Rose.” Maybe she’ll have a sister one day, but for now, we’re just trying to keep her alive! She’s looking good, but everyone I talk to about roses says how tricky they are to grow. We dug a deep hole and sprinkled in some fertilizer that we got from the nursery. With a little love and plenty of water and sun, I think she’ll be just dandy.

We also got a clematis for outside the kitchen window, but she doesn’t have any flowers yet. Adam named her Chloe. Eventually she’ll have purple flowers. My boss told me the trick with clematis is “hot tops, cool bottoms.” Meaning to shade the roots with mulch and let the top get lots of sun. We’ll see if that works!

We also got some pansies for the window box. Unfortunately the ground squirrels discovered them and have been trying to dig them up. I need to sprinkle some blood meal on them to keep the furry friends at bay.

Anyone have planting tips? I’m still working on the rest of the yard!

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Andrea Cooley

  1. I love your yard plans! I have problems with squirrels digging up my pots as well, they are like treasure hunters or something. I’ve heard that if you spray with dish detergent mixed with red pepper (like you put on pizza) it’s a deterrent to some of the other creatures that will come out and play/destroy. Especially for veggies. Are you going to try a vegetable garden?

  2. My grandpa used to have 75 rose bushes at one time. My mom showed me how to trim them: you cut above the first branch that has 5 leaves on it, in the parallel direction to the leaf…kinda confusing, but I’d be happy to show you!

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