Worst rose chores

kittymoonbeamMarch 11, 2013

Right now it is pulling little morning glory seedlings out of prickly shrub roses like Pomponella. I am using long needlenosed pliers but I have to carefully work my way in there to even get my hand to where they are. Hope this is the last year I have to do it. Also digging out established rose roots is one of the toughest jobs I know of. I would just use roundup but of course I want to replant there so I have to dig-saw-dig-saw.

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harmonyp

My very worst ever were having to dig up, cage and replant every rose due to gophers. That was dreadful. Then, mulching is pretty tedious and very heavy. Otherwise I think all the rest I really enjoy.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 9:59AM
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dublinbay z6 (KS)

Since I'm getting older, anything that require much bending over can be a real "pain"--but I don't know how else to feed and weed my roses--LOL.

I agree --having to dig up a rose is terrible. Dig-saw-dig-saw! Unfortunately I had two roses last year that got RRD--so dig, dig, dig! And two roses that died back during the winter--so when the ground gets less gooey with rain, I need to go out and dig them up also. Interesting, one of the replacement roses is Pompenella. Thorny, huh? I'll take care to let no wild Morning Glories anywhere near it!

But I hate to tell you, Kitty. Once Morning Glories start growing anywhere, they will be there forever--short of burning down the entire property and everything growing on it for at least 5 miles in every direction!

What you need to do is get flat on your tummy and squirm your way as far under the thorny rose as possible--and pull up any emerging Morning Glories by the roots--so they can't grow up and get entangled in the thorny bush. And don't worry for now about the bits of left-over Morning Glories actually in the bush--they will die back on their own and the rose bush will fill out and mask those dying pieces completely. Just make sure the Morning Glory get pulled out by the roots--and then mulch heavily so future Morning Glory can't root there very well--and periodically squirm under the bush to pull up any newcomers by the roots. Maybe you can win that battle.

I have Morning Glory growing wild on the back fence by the alley--those critters do like to spread around the garden, don't they!

Kate

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 10:51AM
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ingrid_vc so. CA zone 9

Since my husband does the heavy stuff, I'd have to say it's hand-watering the roses. In the summer, when it has to be done every day or two, it can become deadly boring and tedious with the large area I have. In my infinite wisdom I've added another eight roses to help out Vintage which will make the process even longer.

Ingrid

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 12:11PM
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floridarosez9

The birds and squirrels bring Queen Palm dates from across the creek. They always seem to drop them down in the middle of the thorniest roses. Baby palms pop up from them, and I have to be constantly vigilant so I can get them them out while they're small. Otherwise, they get so huge I would have to dig up the whole rose to get them out. I also received accidentally from my mother the oxalis that blooms with lavender flowers. This stuff will take over your entire yard. I fight it on a daily basis, seriously, every single day I dig some of it up. I have armadillos that are making bad matters worse by spreading the little bulblets everywhere they root up the soil.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 12:17PM
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farmerduck

Finding and squeezing Japnese beetles to death. It is cruel, gross and not very effective.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 2:25PM
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seil zone 6b MI

Spraying anything. So I don't usually, lol.

Kitty, look for some very long tweezers. I have a pair of tweezers that is about 18 inches long. I no longer have to try and get my hand inside the roses to get things out! I got them a few years ago at one of the on line nurseries but I can't remember which but I did find theses.

Here is a link that might be useful: long tweezer

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 2:29PM
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floridarosez9

Ooh, Seil, that's an excellent idea. I don't think it would work on the palm seedlings, but it would be great for everything else. It takes a trowel to get the palms up.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 2:41PM
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canadian_rose(zone 3a)

You can find the long tweezers at pet stores in the reptile centres. People use them to grasp insects to feed their reptiles.
Carol

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 3:34PM
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kentucky_rose zone 6

Spraying is my least favorite chore. I love pruning the bushes.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 3:58PM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Digging them up. I moved about 10 this year and discarded a couple. Heavy and scratchy. Owwww!

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 4:16PM
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fig_insanity Z7a E TN

Normally, I don't have a least favorite, much less a worst, chore. It's like raising children...you do what needs to be done, lol. And I just love my time among the roses...any excuse will do. But right now, I'd love to be able to do ANY of my rose chores. I've hurt my back, and it's been months since I've been able to do anything constructive in the garden (yes, it's a mess...autumn leaves still in the yard!). I didn't even get done what little winterizing I normally do last Fall. I'm dreading the pruning time soon coming up: even if I could afford it, who would I trust to prune my rose babies?????

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 4:37PM
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deervssteve(9)

Anything that involves sawing where access is tough.
Worst rose related activity; removing all the roots from a palm tree so I could plant some rose bushes.

The regular activity I hate the most is deadheading. Roses should be self cleaning.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 4:48PM
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susan4952(5)

Worst rose chore is waiting for spring. Walking through the sodden mess and trying to NOT pinch....NOT snip....NOT uncover.
I love all the others listed above. C :
And kitty, look for surgical forceps or hemostats if u cannot find tweezers in garden supply.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2013 at 10:55PM
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roseseek

I agree with you floridarose about the palm seedlings. There is a huge, mature washingtonia (California or Mexican Trash Palm) in the back and it flowers and fruits multiple times annually. EVERY seed germinates in to multiple seedlings and there are many hundreds of the bloody things. I pull and I pull and there are always hundreds more. Hateful things. Kim

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 12:38AM
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Maryl zone 7a

Climbing and then trying to stand on a wobbly ladder to prune climber canes in a high wind (and in Oklahoma that's almost all we have). I'm down to two climbers, and now that my knees and balance aren't what they used to be I'm guessing that they will be the last two I ever have....Maryl

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 1:04AM
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floridarosez9

Kim, your problems sounds even worse than mine. I only have to deal with what the birds and squirrels bring from across the creek. Of course, you realize if this was something we were trying to propagate, it would never be so easy. I'm sorry I planted any crepe myrtles, because they come up everywhere, including my pots. I could pot them up and start a small business they're so numerous.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 2:19AM
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kittymoonbeam

I'm with you Kim, those are the worst. We had two big ones that dropped seeds everywhere. If we didn't have the tree trimmer come and cut off the developing fruits the winds would scatter them. Crows nested in the tops and the one or two unlucky crow babies got pushed out by the strongest baby. It was sad finding them on the ground hurt and afraid. I couldn't take it anymore and begged dad to cut them down. The seeds in the soil kept sprouting for the longest time afterward. I've seen them growing in cracks in the freeway pavement which must be the harshest place for any plant to grow. If only those things would produce good tasting dates.

It's my own fault about the morning glories. I had a lapse of common sense. Now I grow sweet peas there and have no problems. Four o clocks got unleashed once and thankfully they are almost out of the soil. They looked so innocent on the seed package cover illustration with the pretty hummingbird.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 10:42AM
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barefootgirl(z5b NE Ohio)

I have a Dublin Bay climber that's about 10 feet tall and 8 feet wide. During a fall windstorm it pulled its trellis out of the ground. So now I need to get in there and reset the trellis, hopefully without sacrificing too many of the beautiful mature canes that are thick as a Magic Marker.

Anybody got a suit of armor?

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 12:42PM
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susan4952(5)

someone on this forum once compared MG's to Kudzu..lol

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 1:45PM
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lola-lemon(5b East WA)

I have lower back problems so I do my weeding sitting on my butt and scooting around. I actually find it almost a zen meditation to rip the weeds out and convert my beds to tidy landscape. Currently I have a Moby Dick battle going and my white whale is creeping bell flower-- like some of you have this trash palm.

Anyway- ....
The worst chore for me is anything that requires stooping. So, at the moment it is leaf stripping. Horrible. Hate. I don't own gauntlet gloves either so with some plants like golden celebration and graham thomas and Abe, It's like falling into a bramble...... I think back to what now seem the halcion days of zone 4 gardening (or zone 5 when it got cold!) and almost everything was killed within a foot of the ground thus each bush only took 5 minutes of chopping to be ready for spring and leaves were dead and gone..... Ahhh, those were the days my friend.......lol

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 4:43PM
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bouquet_kansas(z6Ks)

My worst rose chore is weeding out bermuda grass from in and around my roses! You just cant keep that stuff out.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 2:04AM
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buford(7 NE GA)

Susan, that was me. Actually my neighbor asked me why I planted kudzu, but it was a mg gone wild. I too now have to deal with hundreds of seedlings each year.

My least favorite chore is taking care of the debris after pruning. I pruned a lot this weekend and DH and I had to lug the heavy thorny stuff into the backyard and at some point we will have to chip it up. Also I have a few lumps on my head and face where a huge branch I cut off one of my climbers whacked me in the face and the back of the head. Not too much blood thankfully.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 6:31AM
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harmonyp

Oh - I forgot, aside from my reminder that weeding and bermuda grass isn't a bit fun, neither is trying to keep the mint that the prior residents put in, from achieving world (or at least garden) domination.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 10:06AM
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dublinbay z6 (KS)

I have lower back problems so I do my weeding sitting on my butt and scooting around

I had to laugh--I know what you mean!

But it gets the job done, doesn't it!

Kate

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 1:03PM
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Tuggy3(9b NorCal)

Harmonyp-Bermuda grass and mint-that is a daunting combo. I can't imagine how you cope with both. Seems like a no end in sight chore.

My worst chore also is battling the neighbor's mint creeping into the roses. I've been given the green light to go over on her side of the fence and try to wipe it out. No success so far.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 4:44PM
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mzstitch(Zone 7b South Carolina)

Hands down, it's digging a new hole for a new rose. Digging a hole 2 1/2 ft square in hard red clay is way too much work, which is why I only order a few roses each year. Once the hole is dug, I don't mind mixing soils and planting. I've ordered 5 this year, but one is going in a pot!

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 5:14PM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

Since I seem to never leave "good enough" alone.

I would like to add, attaching picket fence parts in an existing rose bed...

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 6:53PM
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susan4952(5)

Some of these are really funny. I keep getting visuals.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 10:31PM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

I should add, behind that picket fence I added and infront of a shrub rose are a pair of tree roses that I have decided are in the wrong spot.

(picture me digging them up now...lol)

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 11:06PM
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Tuggy3(9b NorCal)

I guess the hole is the worst chore. This is what I have to pry out every time I plant a rose,

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 11:45PM
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Kippy(SoCal zone 10. Sunset Zone 24)

Tuggy...my guy left me a clay spade and a Hilti hammer (smaller sized jack hammer)...makes digging holes much easier.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 12:12AM
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lola-lemon(5b East WA)

Tuggy, those are big rocks, just like I have in my clay soil. :-( But It's so satifying when they pull out, isn't it? -- behold! a hole!

Kittymoonbeam- hammering up a fence within an established rose bed sounds like a Kafkaesque type punishment. OUCH.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 1:00AM
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Tuggy3(9b NorCal)

Sounds like a lot of us live on rock farms.

Yes it is oddly satisfying when I pry one of those big guys out.

I need to look into a Hilti hammer. Sometimes I just have to stop and look for another spot because the rock is too big to pull out.

The fence thing seems pretty daunting and painful.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 1:32AM
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Campanula UK Z8

paying for them.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 4:23AM
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Campanula UK Z8

paying for them.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 4:24AM
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Campanula UK Z8

so painful, I said it twice.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 4:25AM
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socks

Oh my gosh you people work so hard! I cannot claim anything as grueling as you all have described. I am a weed fanatic and weed just about every day, knocking out even the tiniest weed. We have mulched for over 30 years, so digging holes isn't too bad. The garden was filled with chunks of asphalt for some reason, but those have been worked out over the years.

I have someone come and prune the bushes for me, then I go around and fine-tune. Nice, huh?

The hardest thing I did lately is decide to SP Tropicana after looking at that wicked, disgusting bush for 10 years, mildewed all the time with ugly roses. I butchered it down to the stump and absolutely could NOT get it dug out--needed dynamite. So I just left it to die out, which of course it didn't, but resprouted as a beautiful, healthy bush. What a surprise. We'll see how it does this year, but it looks good so far. If it gets bad this summer, I'll have to go to Plan B.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 4:49PM
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lola-lemon(5b East WA)

That's it socks-- show Tiffany who's boss.

and re campanula: (so painful, I said it twice.) LOL!

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 4:58PM
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subk3

I just finished pruning and training to the trellis 2 New Beocthes...I mean Dawns. Amazingly, I managed to stay relatively unscathed and it wasn't as bad as I expected, although it took quite a bit longer than I thought it would.

This has been a chore that I've been dreading for the last 6 months. I'm so glad to have it behind me, and thank you Paul Zimmerman and your wonderful how-to videos!

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 6:33PM
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seil zone 6b MI

Ugh! Those are huge rocks! I wouldn't want to have to dig those out. Hard clay lake bed for me but because our whole subdivision was built on reclaimed lake bed there are an amazing amount of bricks too! I have quite the collection of them around the yard, lol.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 7:19PM
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TNY78(7a-East TN)

After seeing all of your boulders, I will never complain about my clay soil again! When I moved to TN from Florida (sandy soil...I miss you!) 6 years ago, I hated the clay! It was a drought and terrible to dig in. Since then, its been much wetter and the clay is actually diggable. I have very few large rocks, and the ones we do have can easily be moved with a small hand shovel used for leverage.

I think my worst chore is weeding and mulching. No matter how much mulch I use, those darn weeds just come back stronger and stronger! With about 200 roses in the ground to mulch and weed around, its another full time job!

Tammy

    Bookmark   March 14, 2013 at 8:06PM
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