Articles & Blogs

Companion Plants for Roses

June 20, 2020

There is a long-standing debate in the rose community of whether you should plant anything else with your roses. The truth is, in the long run, monoculture is detrimental to your soil and plants. Growing them on their own is an open invitation to any pests and diseases that favor roses. But what plants play well with roses? A plant that is known for not liking others. First off, small plants or at least ones that will not overshadow. Your rose needs sun, and any companion has to let the rose get the lion’s share of light. They also cannot compete with the rose for resources. That means nothing aggressive or invasive like periwinkle, cover grasses, mint, or sweet alyssum. They should require the same type of resource, water, and care as your roses. For instance, do not plant something that wants acidic or alkaline soil. Roses like a well-balanced ... Read More

Argentine Ants in your Roses

June 7, 2020

Argentine ants are an absolute menace. They are farmers, spreading weeds. Ranchers, tending to and hearing aphids, scale, and subterranean scale. They also spread disease from one plant to another. In other words, they are a gardener's enemy. Something I have noticed in my garden and in the gardens of others, Argentine ants like white, cream, and pale color roses. I don’t know why but none of my other roses have such a recurring problem with them. This is part of why I have so few pale roses. So what can you do to get rid of them? Slow acting ant bait. As quick kill baits only kill the workers, not the queens. And yes I said, queens. Argentine ant colonies normally have three or more queens. Why not sprays or dust? The use of residual sprays or dust stresses ant colonies, causing them to split into sub-colonies and scatter. ... Read More

Rose Highlight – Floribunda

June 7, 2020

A close relative to the Hybrid Tea and Grandiflora in the Floribunda. In fact, it is a cross between Hybrid Teas and Polyanthas. The name Floribunda means abundant flowers, that should tell you a lot about this class. Each stem producing a cluster of large blooms. “Oh My!” a dark red Floribunda grown in my family’s garden can have over twelve blooms on a single cane. Who needs to buy a bouquet with this rose around? Its only downside? That rose doesn’t have any fragrance. A rose with fragrance is “Julia Child”, the 2006 All-American Rose Selection Winner - the most prestigious rose award in the USA. A butter-yellow with a strong anise scent has an old garden bloom form and blooms in small clusters. It’s heat tolerant and a common parent plant for many modern roses. Some other fragrant Floribundas are; “Honey Perfume” a beautiful apricot rose with a ... Read More

Get Ready For That Garden Party

June 3, 2020

An earlier herb study introduced us to edible flowers. Realizing that we could elevate the look and taste of our dishes with flowers is exciting. And by eating them we could also actually enjoy many health benefits at the same time. Today famous chefs, as well as home cooks, use flowers as a matter, of course, to brighten up many different dishes. You don’t need a reason to include edible flowers in your presentations, but I can’t think of a better time to use them than with a garden party! Very soon, we will enjoy backyard gatherings with friends and family. Your herb garden can be your personal treasure trove of common and uncommon petals, stems, leaves, and stamens to showcase in your summer recipes. Just use your imagination. Zucchini or squash blossoms are a delicious showy way to either stuff, fry, or garnish a salad. You’ll be getting a ... Read More