Yellow Roses bring Sunshine into your Garden

yellow rose.jpg

photo: flikr firecatstef

Add some yellow roses to your garden to bring happiness by the armful!

Yellow is a happy colour and yellow roses have always conveyed a special message of celebration.

People send them to celebrate happy occasions and to bring cheer into the lives of friends and loved ones.

You may have noticed how a patch of yellow roses can liven up a whole rose garden.

It’s as if a ray of sunlight has settled into the garden to show up all the other colours.

If you would like to grow yellow roses in your garden there one or two things to bear in mind before you go out to buy your rose bushes.

Unfortunately, yellow roses are notoriously difficult to grow successfully.  Many of them are prone to diseases such as rust and black spot.

So before you even think of visiting the rose nursery remember to consult your rose catalogue first to make sure that the yellow roses you have selected are disease free.

This is essential because when roses are in bloom at a nursery they all look wonderful.  They get specialist treatment there so you won’t see a sign of any rose disease or insect damage. Only when they are in your garden will you discover the problems.

So do your homework first before you allow yourself to be tempted.

For detailed info about growing roses check out:

How to Plant and Care for your Rose Garden

Help! My Prize Irises are being Decapitated by Birds.

If you’ve never seen what an iris looks like after the birds have been at it – I can tell you.

Decapitated”  is the first word that comes to mind!

No sooner does an iris starts to show colour and begin to open than I find it lying in tatters on the ground.

Even the side blooms get decapitated one by one. Snapped off at the base of the flower with only a few ragged remnants lying on the ground to taunt me.

Iris 'The Admiral', 1938

Flickr photo : Tie Guy II

Birds that eat irises certainly have good taste. They can’t be faulted on that one.

But why don’t they rather go for the dainty little lobelias or some other tasty flower nearby?  Why are they choosing my prize irises?

To make matters worse, no one has heard of my particular gardening predicament.  They find it very funny and think I’m joking!

Fortunately for the birds I have an organic garden so I don’t use poisons.  And even though there are times when I could cheerfully roast those birds for our next Sunday lunch I don’t really want to hurt them.

So this is an urgent S.O.S. If you have had any experience with birds eating irises please get back to me in haste. If you have any suggestions I would be more than grateful.

S.O.S. Help me save my irises!

Heavy Pruning versus light Pruning in Roses

I have noticed how some gardeners prune their roses almost right down to the ground so that the bush is left with canes that are only a few inches above the ground.

I think it’s nothing short of murder.  I don’t think that this is what nature intended and let’s face it, pruning  is not a very friendly act at the best of times.

But there are advantages to pruning and that is why we do it.  It forces the bush to recover by producing fresh long canes and show-stopping roses.

So the bottom line is that we have to hit a compromise.  Which is why I go for light pruning.

I try to keep to the original shape of the bush without cutting it down too low.  I like my rose bushes to grow tall and bushy with lots of roses – a sort of natural look.

So I cut out dead branches and trim the tree well.  I cut off all straggly growth and remove ugly crossing canes that hamper the bush.

Once the bush has been cleaned I reduce the canes by 1/3 to a half of the original height if the bush has grown too tall and straggly.

After that it’s simply a matter of caring for your rose bushes and waiting for the first leaves to sprout.

Let me know what you prefer – heavy pruning or light pruning.  I would be interested to know your reasons too.




Spring is in the Air and it’s Rose Pruning Time!

While folk in the northern hemisphere are trying to keep cool in the heat of summer, here in the southern hemisphere we are still feeling the bite of cold winter mornings.  But the days are crisp and sunny with a promise of warmer weather.

One or two early birds have started building their nests and the sap is staring to  rise in the rose bushes.

Which means  pruning time!

The most  optimum time for pruning here is the middle towards the end of July or even in early August.

The important thing is to wait till  the eyes all along the rose canes start to look alive. Eventually the little red eye buds along the stems will peep out and begin to fatten.  Watch for this carefully because the roses need to be pruned before the eye buds on the stems burst into tiny leaflets .

I checked this morning but we have been having cold nights with frost – and the roses are still dormant.  The little side shoots are starting to bud ever so slightly  but they are not yet ready so I will hold onto my shears and wait a while before starting to  prune.

If you liked this article you may find the following articles interesting too:

Climbing Roses – How to Prune Climbing Roses
My Top Ten list of Fragrant Roses
How I chose the best Fragrant Roses for my Garden
When to Pick Roses for Fragrance