Archive for December, 2010

Blooming Fool

Another Blooming Fool
In the past I have talked about roses that are “blooming fools”. A bush that is a blooming fool is one that blooms so much that it depletes the energy it needs to become a strong bush. Examples from the past are Tournament of Roses, & Voluptuous. I have given Voluptuous away, but I am still working with a couple of bushes of Tournament of Roses with limited success.
I now have a 3rd bush for the Blooming Fool list. It is Pasadena Star. Our bush has been in place for about 3 years. It does struggle some with winter, but this year, about a couple weeks before our Fall Show, it was covered with several small sprays of roses. It was not as visible as it might have been, since it was surrounded by some tall roses, planted on 2 ft. centers. The color of Pasadina Star , a grandiflora, is light yellow, and its blooms last a long time on the bush. Since it has a similar color to the miniflora Butter Cream, I have wondered if the hybridizer of both roses, Bob Martin, used common parents for both roses.

Presidents Letter Nov. 2010

The morns are meeker than they were,
The nuts are getting brown;
The berry’s cheek is plumper,
The rose is out of town!!
Emily Dickinson

The rose blooms have definitely left my address; the plants are pampered, pruned, sprayed and awaiting their blankets before the hard winter sets in. While I don’t like to see the beauty fade, my back and knees are grateful for the rest. The shade garden has also gone sleepy-bye.
November is our last meeting of the year and Jon Wier has announced a change in the program due to Mark Adams of Weeks Roses needing to be out of state. And so, we will see Part II of Harlan’s “year of the rose 2010.” Everybody come along – you’ll love it!!
The October newsletter, my part of it, went out to Bill Blok just before I received the news of Joey Enders death, and unfortunately I was unable to say what was in my mind and heart at that time. Joey was the first person my daughter, Judy, and I met on attending a rose show at the Gardens. He was so gracious in telling us all about the exhibits, and of course, the benefits of joining the GVRS – which we did, that very day. Sitting next to Joey at meetings and shows was unending fun – he could always get me good on those jokes with his poker face. Joey always had time for my many, many, questions, especially at show time when I couldn’t be sure if an exhibit was just right, or needed some fine tuning. At his funeral, the kind of man he had been showed in the number of “Godchildren” who came to weep as they said goodbye to the person who probably many of them thought of as “dad.” He has simply gone from us far too soon – so long Joey – we will miss you.
Now I want to remember another of our friends who, Jon Wier tells me, has just put the 87th candle on his birthday cake. HAPPY BIRTHDAY HOWARD THOMPSON. Howard is so youthful that I find it hard to believe he is older than me!! Howard is such a help at show time – always right there filling those vases, and there again at tear-down time. We wish you many more happy and healthy years Howard – now if I could just persuade you to show your roses——-.
See you all on November 16th, 7:00 pm.

A Job Lost?

A Job Lost?
Well, it may be lost, but it did not pay very well anyway. I had an e-mail from Lynn Shafer this morning. Apparently, the AARS is in process of terminating the program that evaluates rose display gardens. I was on the list for evaluating the rose garden on the MSU campus in East Lansing. The MSU garden was no longer a test garden site, but a public display garden to display new AARS roses and other roses. I am not sure whether the evaluation shut down of the Lansing garden is part of a 3 year phase out of the whole AARS trial garden program, or just the display garden program. As I understand it, display gardens are encouraged to continue soliciting commercial nurseries for surplus roses, to maintain their supply of roses for the public gardens.
I suspect this is another symptom of decay in the rose garden business.. Last summer we got word that J & P Roses, (formerly the gold standard in roses), had gone bankrupt, and was being dissolved.
Last fall we also heard that Weeks, who had been a contract grower for J. & P., had been caught in the J. & P. bankruptcy mess, and had been forced to seek protection against their creditors because of uncollectible bills which were owned them from J. & P. Fortunately, Weeks is able to continue in business, despite its credit problems.
I suspect the greater difficulty we have had lately in buying Nor’East roses, is part of the parent company, Greenheart‘s, efforts to distance itself somewhat from the less profitable rose business.

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