Have no fear, I did actually ride the GS today, but just to brunch and back. It was a nice ride, and I was glad to get out again for the second day in a row. But I got home in the early afternoon, and I had planned to indulge in a couple of rare pleasures for me: relaxing and drinking a cup of coffee on the porch, and then … gardening!
I love roses and gardening almost as much as I love riding. Odd as it may seem, I used to have a giant garden at the house where my husband and I lived before this one. So, today I wanted to transplant one of my roses, a pink one, from its pot on the back patio to a protected (from the sun) area at the front of the house. The poor thing has been through the trauma of being transplanted last year from a smaller pot, only to have the larger pot crack almost immediately after I put it in there. All summer, since it was the wrong season for transplanting, I had to water it almost every day because the water would run out of it quickly.
I tried holding the pot together with duct tape (good for almost everything), but it could only do so much:
The rose didn’t seem too happy, but it did manage to make some beautiful blooms. You have seen them before on this blog, illustrating how hearty roses actually are.
I started to dig a nice roomy “well” for the rose:
It was easy to dig, and soon I had a good well:
I poured some potting soil mixture into the well, then started to make the “cone” in the middle on which the rose would sit. I did mix in the dirt from the ground better than this photo shows:
Then I set about chipping away at the dirt in the pot. It was mostly clay that I’d gotten from the far back yard, and it was almost like cement. Such “lovely” soil we have here in the desert southwest:
Soon, the rose popped out of the pot:
Then I freed the pink rose from the surrounding clay, mixed the soil in the hole a little better, and spread the roots of the rose over the top of the cone:
This might sound like it would be hard on the rose, but this is how bare root roses are planted. I have had success before with transplanting roses in this manner. I think it makes the roots feel better when they get into nice fresh soil, can stretch out a bit, and the soil is “fluffed up” around them.
After I filled in the hole with a nice mixture, I gently tamped it down around the rose to make the soil firm. I don’t weigh a lot, so it wasn’t too traumatic for it! The idea is to fill in all the empty spaces with soil:
After I was done putting the rose in, I evened out and smoothed the area around it so it looked like it was at home.
Then I started to fill the well with water to “water in” the rose, and get the big pockets of air out.
This location will be nice on those summer days when it reaches 110° F.
With the rose settled in, I dumped the broken pot right into the trash! I do not want to be tempted to use it for something else, whatever that might be. I am tired of saving everything “in case I need it.” It ends up making a lot of junk lying around, and I hate that.
Then, since I had about an hour left until I wanted to wind down for the day, I got started on digging out the wells on the established roses in the front yard. I need to do this at least every other year because otherwise the horrible grass closes in tightly around the roses and the roots can barely breathe. It takes me a few days to do this. It takes a lot of time to dig out these wells and shake out the soil from the grass roots. At least it takes a lot of time to do it the way I do it. This is my yellow rose:
I am going to postpone pruning it until this bloom cycle is done:
In the next couple of weeks, I hope to prune all the roses in our yard. I can’t remember the exact names of the pink and the two yellow roses, but I have a beautiful red Chrysler Imperial rose that is always spectacular, and a flamboyant orange Tropicana that I wish would produce better blooms. Perhaps it isn’t really well suited to the desert heat. All the roses are in best bloom in the spring (the first bloom cycle after pruning), and in the fall and winter. In the extreme heat of summer, they go nearly dormant, but they are watered deeply at least every two weeks. Mulch around the base of the rose helps, too. We are lucky we get to enjoy them almost all year long.
P.S. This is my 900th post on this blog! I can’t believe I’ve been writing it for this long (3-1/2 years).