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Decisions Decisions

Posted by Kippy-the-Hippy 10 Sunset 24 (My Page) on
Wed, Aug 1, 12 at 2:39

Friday I plan on picking up the last two DA roses for the back of the house bed. Thanks to the Olympics, Austins are on sale.

But, what to pick! I rule one in and then out.

I would love to hear what you would pick.

One rose will be between Grandmother's Hat and Reine des Violettes (a new band who is loving being in the soil) And under some high windows. There is space for something up to 7' tall and wider than that with out crowding the first two.

The other will be in the front of the bed, but not looking for a 2.5' rose, something between 3-4'. Between Crocus Rose and an English lavender.

The whole bed has a Santa Barbara Daisy 12" low border/hedge. It gets some summer shade on and off all day, more sun all fall-winter-spring

Only off the list colors are white (white house and I already have iceberg on the hot end of the bed) and reds (my son and fiances wedding color and I already have those elsewhere)

What would you pick?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Decisions Decisions

Hi Kippy:

I have 15 Austins, most of them I want to get rid of (thorns, octopus canes, water-hogs, scents that go away in dry and warm temp.) EXCEPT for the ones that give lots of FRAGRANT blooms for cut-flowers:

1) Radio Times - DON'T GET THIS ONE, it's 3' x 3' as own root in my zone 5a, but if grafted in a warm zone it can get 6' x 6', killer-prickly here. I grow this to get prickly branches to chop off, and put them as armor around the bushes that need protection from bunnies.

2) Golden Celebration - DON'T GET THIS ONE. Thorns are spaced wider apart, smells great, but doesn't last long in the vase. Bush is big 5' x 4' as own-root.

3) Evelyn - the repeat is very fast in alkaline clay soil, at least 10 blooms per flush as a 3 months own-root. It's 3' x 3' in zone 5a. This is always fragrant and lasts long in a vase. Smells like ripe peaches.

4) Wise Portia - it's always blooming, but the blooms are small, more like a landscape bush. It's 3' x 3' as own-root. The color is great, the scent smells great in cool weather, but non-existent in warm weather. I cut it for the vase in rainy spring/fall, and it lasts 4 days. The scent is much better than baby powder at temp. below 60.

5) Queen of Sweden - This has thorns, but wide-spaced apart. The bloom is salmon-pink in alkaline soil, smells great in cool weather, but disappear if the temp. is above 70 degrees. This is upright and compact. I like its scent more than Scepter d'Isle (totally gone in dry weather), and Mary Magdalene (too short and prickly to sniff).

My other 10 Austins I really want to get rid of: messy octopus canes in dry weather and alkaline soil, nasty thistles all the way to the blooms, water-hogs, and scents that show up ONLY in cool and rainy spring/fall in my zone 5a. They are: Christopher Marlowe (little fleeting lemon scent, gets huge), Scepter d'Isle (too messy octopus canes, blah-fading bloom color, big water-hog), Lilian Austin (killer thistles which gave me endless pain, huge bush, little scent), Pat Austin (bloom that fry even in partial shade at above 80 degrees, bloom shatters fast, weird scent), William Shakespeare 2000 (rotten-flower scent, harsh bloom color), Crown Princess Mag (little scent, gets big, water-hog).....

My Austins didn't shoot up octopus canes last year when we had a cool and rainy summer. This year we have a drought in June/July, they shoot up octopus canes and I get so sick of watering them. We are finally back to 1" of rain per week, cooler temp., but I still have tons of octopus canes to trim. Austins are a lot of work if the weather is dry and hot.


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Forget that you asked for 2: big and small

I forget that you asked for 2: one big, and one small - no white nor red color. Golden Celebration would fit the big one, but it's a real water-hog, best if planted in partial shade. Since it's stingy if trimmed-back, you would need at least 6' x 6' for a grafted one in warm zone. Mine as own-root second year is huge and demands 2 gallons of water every other day - it's in partial shade with 5 hours of sun.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Thanks for the ideas StrawberryHill,

I think we have different tastes in forms and this is a "free" water section that gets graywater. They get some fresh water too. I have a Golden Celebration. Evelyn is one that gets put on and off the list, but if she likes alkaline, she might be the winner. I put RdV were I can easy amend to more acid and at the end of the rose section.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

I'm not sure how tall Young Lycidas can get but that might be a good one to plant between GH and RdV. I've heard nothing but praise for it and it looks gorgeous. I've managed to keep Bishop's Castle low and bushy and the flowers are pretty and quite fragrant. Sophy's Rose blooms a lot for me and so far no octopus canes in my hot and dry garden. Pretty Jessica would be wonderful for a shorter rose.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

I suggest you study the new varieties Austin introduced for 2010 (or for 2012, if they are available yet in the U.S.). All the ones in the 2010 selection are quite lovely and disease-resistant and in the 3-4 ft tall category. Munstead Wood is especially liked by many posters on this forum, but I'm partial to Alexandra Princess of Kent--big,fat, full blooms, medium pink; good disease-resistance; and a real beauty.

Don't have any suggestions for a taller one --sorry about that.

Kate

Here is a link that might be useful: New Varieties for 2010


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Thanks Kate, I have a Princess Kent and I love her too. I also have a Lady of Megginch and she is looking like a good rose for the spot she is in. Munstead is on the red list to pick up


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RE: Decisions Decisions

I have had years of experience with multiple Evelyn roses, growing them in bright sun to partial shade and mostly shade (due to the growth of surrounding trees). In all sun, she will be too big for the front, but fine for the back, and will repeat pretty well. In partial and more shade, she might be ok for the front sizewise, but in your climate, probably not, and will still be ok for the back, but repeat will not be good. I think she is very sun sensitive. In bright sun, there is a lot of bloom fading. Still, she is a gorgeous rose both in form and scent. Diane


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RE: Decisions Decisions

I agree with Diane. Evelyn needs full sun for fast repeat, and gets very big - she needs drastic pruning after each flush, otherwise huge octopus canes - Evelyn would be an eye-sore in the front. Her value is in cut flower, I'm not sure about landscape with the wide-shooting canes.

Queen of Sweden is perfect for the front, upright and compact. She blooms well in partial shade 4 hours of sun. Her value is in landscape, always charming with a bloom. She has a nice upright shape. I haven't cut her for the vase. Surprisingly I prefer Queen of Sweden for the beauty of the bloom. Evelyn turns grayish pink in alkaline soil and warmer temperature. In cold and wet weather she has a nicer color.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Kippy -- In Camarillo -- the closest climate to you -- Evelyn bloomed only on the tip-top of 15-ft. canes. Blooms are lovely -- IF you have a ladder.

Golden Celebration is great in a vase for us, if picked reasonably tight. It IS a water-hog.

Prospero -- if left pretty much un-pruned -- will be healthy and bloom continuously here.

Those, and Cymbaline -- are the only Austins we still grow here. (And there was a time when we bought them ALL.)

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

For the spot next to Crocus Rose, I would consider English Garden. For me, in zone 9, it grew about 3-4' tall and was almost always in bloom. Flowers are flat and large, of a yellowish orangeish pastel color, prettier than that description sounds. I think it would look nice next to lavender.

I would probably have The Nun next to RVR, but as you don't want white, maybe The Prioress. I have not seen Cymbaline, but I do agree a greyish pinkish color would go well with RVR. Or one of the cup shaped bourbons, Reine Victoria or the sport, Mme Pierre Oger, would be especially nice.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

I agree about 'English Garden.' It's a nice little rose. I'd avoid pruning it much -- but it did bloom well here.

The good news about Cymbaline is that it is incredibly disease-free here. And it has that myrrh scent. It's a medium-sized plant, with a pleasing arching habit.

The bad news is that it is a stingy bloomer. We keep it (two of it) because DH really likes it.

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Thanks!

Jeri, now I remember why I had taken Evelyn off my list. Mom would love a tall rose to look at from her window, but 15' is a tad too much..lol

Cymbaline and English Gardener are sold out.

Any thoughts on any of these:

Harlow Carr (I have read so many reviews of this one and they are very mixed)

Huntington Rose

Mary Rose

Sophy's Rose

Sister Mary (says on the lilac side of pink might look good with RdV?)

Strawberry Hill

Or

Wildeve

Alnwick

St Swithun

The Wedgewood Rose (sounds too tall)

Port Sunlight (too orange for me but mom would probably approve)


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RE: Decisions Decisions also

forgot also Scepter'd Isle


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RE: Decisions Decisions

How bout lady emma hamilton? She's my shortest normal shaped austin - tho my zone is 6a. Beautiful flowers, great scent and excellent rebloom. She also has interesting burgundy canes-- (reminds me of caradonna salvia that way).


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RE: Decisions Decisions

i adore my sceptre'd Isle for her delicate looking blooms. The way she opens to reveal her stamens is just cheerful looking like a smiling face. Her myrrh scent is strong too. She is extremely bloomiferous here (easily triple the blooms of any other remontant rose i have) and she is never without blooms. She also explodes from her spring pruning in to a big vase shape. I am really curious how she would look in a hot climate with no winter cane loss. I imagine this big tornado funnel cloud of a rose chewing the lanscape--- but i dunno?


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RE: Decisions Decisions

There is one Lady Emma Hamilton left


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RE: Decisions Decisions

We didn't buy St. Swithun, because when it came out, it was stigmatized as wimpy. :-(

Mary Rose, OTOH, we grew for years. Til we got flat bored with her.

She was vigorous, and made a nice, round bush of maybe 4 x 4, and bloomed in repeated flushes. Occasionally, she sported to Winchester Cathedral -- which I thought was good, because our Winchester Cathedral was wimpy.

Can't say about disease-resistance, because back then, we sprayed. I think she might be OK though.

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Jeri,

Did you hear more about St Swithun after it had been in commerce awhile? How healthy was Mary Rose? Every time I have been to the nursery, she seems to be in bloom (of course they have many of them-so easier to find the best ones to put out) She seems to be out of patient too, I could save some pruning trimmings from her


Does anyone have any thoughts on James Galway?


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RE: Decisions Decisions

After St.Swithun had been in commerce a while, I wasn't asking, because we were removing Austins, not buying more. :-)

Mary Rose was very healthy. (However, in those days, we sprayed.) In fact, it was a solid exhibition rose for us, tho never a big winner.

We kept her for a long time, because she was a reliable repeater for us. In your place, I'd give her a whirl. (You know that she was named for the sister of Henry VIII -- or for the battleship named by him, after her).

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

How do you think RdV would look with Young Lycidas near by?

Still need a taller rose for the back of the bed


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RE: Decisions Decisions

James Galway is large here, so I imagine it could be really large in your zone.... here it's over six feet wide and about 6-7 feet tall.

Miss Alice is a lovely compact Austin with good repeat bloom. Mine is under 2 feet tall. I saw it at Huntington Library some years ago and it was about 3 feet tall as I recall...

The Wedgewood Rose is fairly new to the garden, not sure how tall it will get. Fragrance is OK, but does not have the strong sweet quality of other Austins, to my nose.

The Alnwick Rose has beautiful fragrance, one of my favorite Austins for scent. It's a mix of sweet rose, floral and fruit. It stays compact here at about 3 1/2 feet tall, might be compact for you...

Mary Rose didn't have a strong fragrance to my nose... wasn't keen on the blooms so I didn't keep it...


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Right now I am thinking:

James Galway for the back (I would rather a peachy color)

Young Lycides for the front
Or
Mary Rose

Although looking at old posts, Evelyn is almost tempting again. Right color, but 15' canes....hmm Mom would love it though (the window used to have a rose draped over it years ago)


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RE: Decisions Decisions

If you want a reeeally big rose, you could try Brother Cadfael or Jude the Obscure, both great roses. I concur that Young Lycidas is a lovely rose and is a continuous bloomer for me. But I don't know how big it's going to get my fairly hot climate. I love Princess Alexandra of Kent so far, too, and it is a continuous bloomer also. Diane


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RE: Decisions Decisions

If you want a reeeally big rose, you could try Brother Cadfael or Jude the Obscure, both great roses. I concur that Young Lycidas is a lovely rose and is a continuous bloomer for me. But I don't know how big it's going to get my fairly hot climate. I love Princess Alexandra of Kent so far, too, and it is a continuous bloomer also. Diane


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Thank you, Nanadoll, for the above info. Hi Kippy: If you have lime in your tap water to alkaline the pipes so they don't corrode, it could make James Galway stingy in alkaline soil. There's plenty of complaints about James Galway not blooming often enough.

Lime, or calcium, drives down potassium. Potassium is needed to make bloom, strengthen stems, and to improve color. Evelyn has strong stem, dark green leaves, and has zero problem picking up potassium to pump out tons of bloom in alkaline soil. That's not the case with pale Charles Darwin, who takes forever for the second stingy flush, and he makes useless octopus canes instead of blooms. I will have to give him potassium in soluble form. One third of soil tested by EarthCo. is deficient in potassium, esp. in limy water and calcatic soil.

Queen of Sweden is peachy pink in alkaline soil. I'll take her over Evelyn for landscape appeal anytime. Evelyn beats Q of S. in vase life, but Evelyn fades into ugly grayish pink in warm weather. Queen of Sweden is always blooming, and I take constant few blooms over a heavy flush with a pause in between like Evelyn.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Strawberry,

I love Queen of Sweden too, but Jeri already noted she needs the cold. And that is something we are short on. Some of the shade this bed gets is from banana trees.

As far as the soil, it is clay, the alkaline would come from gray water use not the water itself. Our water corrodes pipes for kicks and giggles.

Mom has a friend who seems to think mom has an interest in bags of rotten bananas, so the roses get banana peels regularly.

Hoovb noted that her Evelyn got pruned at 7', that would work for me too. And something I could do from indoors...lol (gotta love old fashion windows that open in)

Here is a link that might be useful: Annual report from our water agency


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Brother Cadfael was another of the Austins that bloomed sparsely in our portion of La La Land. I suspect he wanted at least a modest amount of winter chill -- which he never got here.

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Any thoughts on Grace?


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Thanks, Kippy, for that link on your water report. Great report, nice water pH - lucky you! I'm next to a limestone quarry with hard well water so it's high in calcium, even my blood tested high in calcium, my water pH is over 8. Lime is calcium oxide.

I did an experiment this year on Francis Blaise rose. I gave him sulfur and nitrogen, he turned darker green. Then I mulched him with used ground almond, after making almond milk. Now he has a nice golden glow - it doesn't hurt, but it looks odd. Almond is high in magnesium and calcium. I actually like his golden leaves.

Hi Jeri: Brother Cadfael gives cold-zoners a hard time. Predfern in Chicagoland told me that his Brother Cadfael is 3' tall, and after 3 years, it finally gave a perfect bloom.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Maybe Chicago's TOO cold for him. :-)

I liked his foliage, and upright habit, but the blooms were over my head, and not plentiful. I'm sure he's great somewhere.

FWIW -- Our water is bet. 8.3 and 8.5, and full of a lot of stuff we really don't need.

A man on the water co. board once said to me:
"You don't DRINK this water, do you, lady?"

In fact, I rarely do, but we do have to irrigate with it, not to mention showers and laundry.

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Jeri

Do you have all the TV ads featuring people injured by our hard water?

Our water is hard too, fyi vinegar works good to get the white calcium off glasses and shower doors. Our water mostly comes from Lake Cachuma (in the middle of the hills for miles and miles in the back country), but if I was Jeri and getting any water from near the strawberry fields, military bases or turf fields, I would be scared to drink it too!


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Well, they test it, and to date our wells are within state guidelines. Barely. But I read an article the other day about how we should avoid bottled water, because our tap water is " . . . The finest in the world.". I thought -- "HA! They need to try MY water!"

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

I have a hard time buying bottled water, the trash issue. So we filter ours instead.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Brother Cadfael happens to be great here: a good bloomer, one of best scented Austins, very few thorns, and a nice growth habit. I'd be happy to provide photos. Diane


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Hi Kippy: the only info I know of Austin Grace is from Stgal in Missouri, who has the largest collection of Austins. Grace is in her least-like group, due to the bloom that flattens out. I have that problem with my 3 mini-roses, blooms flatten out, very ugly.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Yes. We filter our water too. And buy filtered water in larger quantities and bring it home in huge re-usable bottles.

The garden just has to take the water as it comes.

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

I checked my village's water report: we are the Taste Test Champion for 2011 in the county. I lived in various places: CA, CT, MI, and lived with city-water in Illinois. Hard-well-water tastes best, it's full of minerals like calcium and taste sweet, rather than sour like others.

My neighbor has prostrate cancer. Since there are 5 studies that linked prostrate cancer to calcium, they filtered their water. Now theirs taste pretty bland.

Something in my hard-well-water increased fertility. I always joke about selling my water to fertility clinics. Everyone here got pregnant at one time or another: I was at 40, so were my neighbors in their 40s', those who failed with artificial insemination, those who had previous miscarriages ....


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RE: Decisions Decisions

We went to Otto and picked up three Austins for the bed.

I picked up both Mary Rose and Young Lycidas along with James Galway. Mom really liked James, so I am glad that is the one I had already picked out.

I was only going to get one of the two (Mary or Young Lycidas) But I decided I would get both and one may end up elsewhere or I may move the Russian Sage, something I was thinking I should do anyway.

Mom had never been to Otto, so she really enjoyed the trip and was amazed at the variety of roses and fruit trees.

I may sneak down again next week, it is fair time, and pick up a pair of Munstead.


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RE: Decisions Decisions should add

I should add, of all the roses in the English section, the biggest bloom and probably the prettiest was...sigh Evelyn.

She even reached out and tried to get on my wagon-her arms were at least 5' with sprays of blooms on the ends.

sigh


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Hi Kippy - Great choice with James Galway, Robert in England raved about that scent. Your water is not alkaline so James Galway would have no problems blooming.

With a big size like James Galway or Evelyn which needs constant trimming, the almost thornless James Galway is a better choice, less chance of injury. I still have tons of octopus canes to trim and pick up, the last time I picked up thorny branches - it poked me through my thick suade gloves. I'll use goat-skin gloves the next time.

Personally I think James Galway is more exquisite in beauty than Evelyn, I would rather have a few exquisite blooms, than tons of less-beauty blooms. Evelyn gets this dirty-dishwasher pink tone in alkaline soil and water, but she's gorgeous in an acidic potting soil. Lime where I live drives down potassium, which is needed for bloom production and better color.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Hi Kippy,
Follow your heart and buy Evelyn. It's only one rose, and if she doesn't work out, you can replace her. If you give it a try, you'll never know if you can grow her in your garden. She is fine with my alkaline soil and my five Es are now eight years old. Good luck. Diane

Here is Evelyn with some Sarah Bernhardt peonies. She is as big as a peony.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

I counted buds/blooms this morning on my 3-months old own-roots from Chamblees: 30+ on Scepter'd Isle, 20+ on Evelyn, and zero on Charles Darwin and Eglantyne.

Yes, get Evelyn, she's a blooming machine in alkaline clay soil.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

You guys are killing me with the beautiful Evelyn photos!

My best tall rose spot I purchased the James Galway for and right now I don't have another good spot of a tall thirsty rose.

Maybe at some point I will find a good spot and get her.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

There's more to growing conditions than soil and water.
I bet Evelyn doesn't grow 15-ft. canes in Zone 5a. :-)

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Very true Jeri!

What frost? What freeze?

They make the news here if we have a freeze warning.

If I took out another persimmon tree and the plum tree from where I would like a second (lower half) garden shed, then I could plant a large rose like Evelyn and let the neighbors with the ground water well who like to super soak their lawns help water her. But as perfect as the retaining wall up to the house would be for a row of tall Austins, it is on the dry side and I don't want to commit to that level of water needs. There is one other place as well that tall would work, but for now that space is occupied.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

I agree that there is more to growing conditions than soil and water, but my point was that if a person really deep down wants to try growing a plant, and that plant is hardy to her zone, then just go for it--it's just one plant, not a total remodel of a garden. Outcomes can be different than predictions, but if the outcome is not good, then replace the offending plant. But nothing ventured, nothing gained. Diane


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Oh, sure. I agree with that. And over the years, we've tried growing a whole bunch of plants here. Some successfully. Some -- not.

But here in SoCal, we're learning to be cautious about roses with a higher-than-average need for water. Between "Jolly Green Giant" syndrome, scanty bloom production, and the water needs, it's just smart to be cautious about how many such roses we plant.

Because, sooner or later, we're going to have our water use restricted again. And when that happens, you really want roses that can tough it out when they have to. And that's why I don't recommend some of those cultivars, for our area.

Kippy's conditions are a lot like mine. Except that, where she lives, they have actually forbidden watering of gardens when things get bad. Here -- Not yet. They just raise the price of water . . .

Jeri


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RE: Decisions Decisions

Jeri is right, people here were painting their dead lawns green....lol

But it was a moratorium on watering lawns, not veggie gardens and I think just front yard lawns because of them being for ornament not use, can't really remember because since we had no lawn and were in a different district we had different rules.

The lasting difference is any new housing has big restrictions on percentage of front yard lawn allowed, use of drip irrigation and drought tolerant plantings. Also, many of the parks and public spaces use reclaimed water for irrigation.


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RE: Decisions Decisions

You're actually fortunate Kippy, that S.B. distinguishes between gardens and lawns. :-)

Jeri


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