Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Last Rose of ?

In my Chicago garden I always dreaded the Fall cleanup which meant the end of the gardening season until Spring.  Months and months of gray skies, snow and bitter cold to endure before the first bulbs poked up out of the ground. Even after 4 decades of Chicago winters its the one thing I could never get used to much less love.  Having grown up in the sunny deep South anything below 70 is cold to me .

Here in North Carolina, however, my first garden ,which I planted a few months ago has thrived and is still in bloom.  I have been so bold as to even plant a winter garden of vegetables in pots on my back deck.  We've had a few nights of mid-30's and I've had to bring out the row covers but they still look good .

My favorite rose shrub , 'knockout ' is still blooming her lovely head off.  I picked up two of them at  Home Depot for $3 and $6 and they were looking sickly when I put them in the ground with plenty of compost and manure which they love.  They have since grown into beautiful shrubs that now fill the once empty space near my front entrance .

                         Unless December proves to be brutual this may well be the last rose of winter .

When the last roses of winter finally do fade I will than take the opportunity to prune them back to control their size.  Knockouts can get tall and leggy and  many gardeners tend to overfed them which only adds to their rapid growth.   I think they look best when kept at 4 ' and under.

1 comment:

  1. It's nice to still have roses, isn't it? I'm glad you're enjoying the milder weather here. We'll still have a few in December, most likely.


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