Monday, April 16, 2012

Rain and Roses

We had a lot of rain, thunderstorms and strong winds last week.

Handel still looks pretty good

The storm lasted for a few days, and while the rain was welcome, the wind did a lot of damage to my garden. My spireas, in full bloom, look even more disheveled than usual. Many tender new canes on roses were broken off. Quite a few rain-damaged petals too, not to mention rust, mildew and blackspot...

But the flowers on my Souvenir de la Malmaison all opened, to my unending surprise

Oh well, in times like these I am grateful it is not actually my livelihood that is so affected :).

The Dutch irises were fine, but Rosette Delizy shows quite a bit of rain spotting

Take my Soleil d'Or, for instance. I have read so much about this rose, the first Pernetiana, and so uniquely colored. Its claim to fame is the introduction of yellow and orange colors into the breeding of hybrid teas, but this rose is also notorious for lack of disease resistance, awkward growth habit and less than stellar rebloom. I have never seen Soleil d'Or in person. However, I like Pernetiana roses, and grow a few of them...

Condesa de Sastago

... so this fall I finally succumbed to my curiosity and ordered Soleil d'Or to see for myself how bad (or good) this rose is. My band arrived and promptly started to die back. These past few weeks it grew a little, and set 8 buds on a tiny twig. I thought it was a remarkably brave feat for a rose that unfailingly continued to die back and, in six months, never outgrew its 1 gallon pot. I removed the buds, of course, except for one, because at this point I just wanted to see whether the rose is worth ordering again. Well, today the bud opened.

Not only is the color spectacular, but there is also that distinctive tangerine fragrance. I fell in love with the bloom, although the plant's lack of vigor and disease resistance is truly unparalleled (in my garden, at least). Still, I think I might try it again, in warmer weather. Maybe my perseverance will pay off :).

Luckily, not all is bad. Some roses continue to be delightful no matter what the weather might throw at them. Mme Bérard is one such delight.

Cynthia Brooke is in full bloom now, and I am very happy with it too. No disease, no balling, no issues whatsoever, except that its fragrance is not as strong as I expected. Mine is own root and fairly young, and so far has done really well in a big pot.

Now the days are finally getting warmer, and the garden is coming more and more alive.

 I spend so much time outside now, watching the flowers open.

Break o'Day

If only spring could last forever.

Flax lewisii


  1. Masha: I don't know if you'll believe this or not, but before I opened up this page, I told my husband about how trips to your blog always take my breath away. And of course it happened this time, too! Part of it is the Roses, themselves, but part of it is your unequaled photographs. Sigh...just lovely! Thank you so much for posting exceptional photos of Roses touched with raindrops. Sigh...

  2. Oh my gosh, Masha, you Soleil d'Or looks so beautiful! Mme Berard never fails to delight me, when I see a photograph of it in your posts. But the rose that really blows me away in this post is 'Cynthia Brooke'. Just love it! It seems to be a very good yellow rose. By the way, I have a lot of storm damage in my garden, too. Especially the Hybrid Perpetual roses have suffered quite a bit, but like in your garden other roses have been unphased by the bad weather.

  3. Your roses all look beautiful to me, especially the Soleil d' Or. I can see why you want to grow it!

  4. As always, such gorgeous photos! I just planted 6 David Austins I had recently purchased mail order from Heirloom Roses in Oregon, and hope they will turn out as nicely as yours. We had to plant them in gopher baskets though (our homemade version crafted from 1" chicken wire mesh) because these voracious critters are abundant throughout the property.

  5. Marsha, your photographs are incredible.
    Souvenir de la Malmaison looks so pure and fresh, its on my list now.

  6. Dla mnie też wiosna mogłaby trwać, bo to najpiękniejsza pora roku.Piękna jest róża, która Co choruje.Ma niesamowity kolor, szkoda, ze zapachu nie czuję. Przykro mi, że deszcz narobił szkód. Nas niestety pogoda też nie rozpieszcza. Pozdrawiam.
    For me, it could last spring, because it's the most beautiful season roku.Piękna is the rose, which choruje.Ma What an amazing color, too bad I do not feel the smell. I'm sorry to rain damage done now. We also, unfortunately the weather does not spoil. Yours.

  7. Hello Masha, I simply have to agree with all plantpostings has to say. Also your uncluttered site with the lack of sidebars etc adds to the mystique. I hope you get the success with Soleil d'Or you are after, the colouring does indeed look very unique.

  8. Absolutely gorgeous Roses...amazing how tough they are to survive all that crazy weather.

  9. Hi Marsha, your photos are full of light and sun. Of course the roses are breathtakingly beautiful, but your keen eye and great camera,(I suppose!)all add to the magic. Without you, your roses would be nothing.

  10. I've also tried to grow Soleil d'Or, but keeping it alive is like continually bashing my head against the ground. But oh, so beautiful it is!

  11. It's always such a treat to see your beautiful roses Masha, the colors and textures breathtaking, thank you for sharing your beauties

  12. It's great how those heirloom roses can stand up to the elements. Your photos are so lovely - I especially like that yellow Cynthia Brooke.

  13. Up here in Napa County I have one rose opened --Reine des Violettes , but with our warm days predicted for the rest of the week I expect to see lots more rosy action.

  14. Wow such a lot of beauty you are showing. Hope for you the rain will stay away for some time.

  15. Great photos, Masha! In my garden there are the first small leaves on the roses . Happy Earth Day!

  16. So beautiful, Masha. Roses and photos.

  17. I’ve been a follower on your blog for a while now (4th page back on your wedgit)and would like to invite you to visit and perhaps follow me back. Sorry I took so long for the invitation

  18. Roses and raindrops -- what could be more beautiful? Perhaps the last picture of that lovely blue flax. :)


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