This hydrangea is a wonderful cultivar. It is called Little Lime. It has puffy and conical shaped pale green bloom that fade to white or cream. In the fall the blossoms also become tinted with pink on the edges. This is a fairly compact hydrangea that is about 4 to 5 feet in diameter. It is also very winter hardy, and came through the winter better than the rest of my hydrangeas. I purchased mine at Applied Climatology in the West Chester Growers Market
Here is their inventory for this coming Saturday (as in tomorrow):
Sad and to be mentioned in local nursery news is that one of my favorite nurseries is consolidating their business to their Chadds Ford, PA location. Woodlawn Nursery which is on the old Potter’s site at Sugartown Road and Paoli Pike in Malvern is having a consolidation sale. I will miss them when they are gone from Malvern, but am glad they are keeping their Chadds Ford location. They do excellent work and their plants have been amazing. Plus they are super nice people.
Oh and just so you all know, this is not a compensated blog. If I post about goods and services it’s because I want to, it’s not a services swap or direct compensation. There is nothing wrong with bloggers who do that, but I want to be clear about my own blog.
Thanks for stopping by, I hope you are enjoying this amazing day!
Question: What are “lost roses,” and how did they get that way?
Christopher: Traditionally, gardeners grew a tremendous diversity of roses—some 6,000 different kinds were introduced by nurserymen in the nineteenth century alone. Not all of these roses were available at any given time, but still, a century ago gardeners took for granted that they would have access to roses of all sorts of sizes and colors, from tiny five-petalled roses very little different from the wild species, to huge, petal-packed puffs as much as six inches in diameter.
This situation changed at the beginning of the twentieth century. The nursery industry consolidated, so that the growing of roses was handled by a few giant firms. To maximize profits, these businesses trimmed the product lines, eliminating the less than best-selling roses. Eventually, the rose growers focused on the production of the widely-popular new hybrid tea roses to the exclusion of almost everything else.
The other roses, the heritage of 2,500 years of breeding and gardening, disappeared from nursery catalogs and eventually from gardens, too. They were lost and presumed dead until a handful of imaginative rosarians made it their business in the 1970s and 1980s to search out specimens surviving in abandoned gardens, cemeteries, and other inadvertent sanctuaries. My book is the story of these collectors and their crusade.
But where are these and old garden roses today? Thomas Christopher might want to consider a follow-up book as roses are quickly disappearing from the American garden landscape.
A flower as American as Apple Pie shouldn’t disappear from gardens. They are regal and amazing flowers and much like your pets and children will thrive on simple and consistent routines. Has our world evolved so much that because a rose bush is not instant gratification that we can no longer grow it?
I went searching for roses this spring. Chester County has a slew of nurseries and while I could find every other shrub, roses were on the endangered species list. The only roses to be found were sorry specimens from prior seasons that should have been marked down for a rose lover to adopt, but weren’t and those “Knock Out Roses” – Knock Out Roses are apparently the evolution of the American Garden Rose and purportedly require little care. They are o.k. but they don’t give me that true garden rose feeling.
I finally had to order my roses bare root. I hated to not give local nurseries the business, but they didn’t have the stock. I don’t mind planting bare root rose, it is fairly easy – just follow the directions of the grower.
Yes, I know deer like roses, but that is why you have fences and dogs.
So yesterday when I stopped at Woodlawn Landscaping and Nursery in Malvern (the old Potters site on Paoli Pike for those of you who haven’t been there), I got to talking roses with one of my favorite nurserywomen there as I picked out some perennials. She told me how the rose industry had faltered and about Jackson & Perkins bankruptcy a couple of years, and financial issues other rose growers had experienced in this crazy economy of the past few years.
So roses are a victim of the economy too? Thanks, President Obama. My healthcare keeps going up and now I can’t find a simple pleasure like rose bushes? I wonder if the White House Rose Garden has suffered as a result? (Sorry, didn’t mean to get political but roses are an American tradition are they not? Shouldn’t someone be indignant?)
Here is an article I found that I thought was interesting:
Future generations may never know the beauty of Diana, Princess of Wales; sniff Catalina in the sunshine; or fall for Beloved.For a century, devoted gardeners have appreciated the marvels of delicate and finicky hybrid roses and referred to them by name, like pets or family. The product of generations of breeding, the queen of flowers could act like a spoiled princess because its delicate blooms offered a special reward.
In recent years, though, time-strapped homeowners have traded their big teas for compact shrub roses — utilitarian soldiers in the landscape that could cover ground without fuss.
Our desire for the carefree — no-iron shirts, no-wax floors, and now low-maintenance yards — has brought the rose industry to a crossroads.
“At some point, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy,” said Charlie Anderson, president of Weeks Roses, the only major company still creating new varieties of full-size roses. “[Landscape] roses will be all you have; the beautiful, unique hybrid teas will be gone.”
The flagging economy has compounded the rose industry’s troubles.
Two years ago, rose giant Jackson & Perkins, which had annually shipped 10 million bushes nationwide, filed for bankruptcy protection. Many of the hybrid roses the company created — such as Diana, Catalina and Beloved — may soon disappear from the mass market as the supply of those bushes dries up.
“Roses are viewed as an extravagance, and they’re still trying to shed that stigma,” said Seth Taylor of Capital Nursery…..The annual wholesale value of California’s rose crop dropped 55% to $27.20 million in 2010 from a high of $61.05 million in 2003, according to nursery industry expert Hoy Carman, a retired UC Davis professor.
“The whole nursery industry is down,” Carman said. “In 2008, sales just plummeted.”
Said Adams of the Rose Society: “Roses are not the first thing homeowners think of when they want to plant a garden. Competition with other choice plants is fierce…. Most major rose growers have gone bankrupt or consolidated with other wholesale nurseries…..Jackson & Perkins, acquired by J&P Park Acquisitions Inc. of South Carolina, no longer develops and grows new roses. Before bankruptcy, the company farmed 5,000 acres in Wasco with 20,000 bushes per acre. Without buyers, many of those bushes were burned.
Once a breeder goes bankrupt, its roses usually disappear with it. Rose patents — good for 18 to 20 years — may be sold, but budwood and mother plants are lost. Many Jackson & Perkins roses are now on the endangered list.
“Some will be preserved,” Anderson said. “But a lot of varieties were lost; there was no budwood to collect [to create new hybrid bushes]. Most will just disappear into the ether.”
When is the last time any of you planted a rose bush? I don’t think there is an app for that, so when is the last time you really dug in the dirt? As in planted things yourselves? Gardening is a primal thing to be sure, a connection between you and the land and it doesn’t have to be all perfect and chemically induced lawns, either.
I know I am a little dotty when it comes to gardening because I love to do it. Not for other people, just myself. It gives me peace and satisfaction. The easiest way to inner peace is a simple walk or cooking or gardening I think.
Roses are a part of every garden I have ever had large or small. Granted I will never have the amount of roses in my garden that I grew in my parents’ old garden (read this June 1997 Philadelphia Inquirer article where I was interviewed about rose growing – Rosy Outlook ). Pardon me while I ramble like a proverbial rambling rose, but wow I still remember shortly after my parents sold that house the new owner ripping out and tossing over 51 different rose bushes so he could have a look that was more developer “shrubbed” and predictable (and someone else would take care of it.)
I am making a plea to all you gardeners who are left: if you have some sun, plant some roses. Don’t let real roses disappear. You don’t have to plant dozens, just try one or two. After all the rose is iconic enough to Americans that it has a parade, and it is still the state flower of New York, and last I checked the White House still had a rose garden, so aren’t they worth saving and trying again? Not those landscaper roses that have taken over, but a real rose, with that real rose smell and regal appearance? And did you know that roses are a working flower too? Don’t believe me? Check any wine producer and let them tell you about how they plant roses in the vineyards. They have this canary in the coal mine role – grape vines and roses are susceptible to the same diseases.
My final word on the topic is yet another article, fairly recent, that I found about roses and life:
By Sherry Young, Deseret News Published: Thursday, May 23 2013
In frustration with all the roses in my yard I once wrote an article titled “Roses have thorns — and thorns have roses.” It sprang from a quote by writer and novelist Alphonse Kerr, who observed, “Some people are always grumbling because roses have thorns. I am thankful that thorns have roses.”
As a beleaguered gardener, I wrote, “My yard is filled with roses. Now, during the third summer learning curve for tending to them, I bear scars on my arms and legs from trying to figure out their perfidious nature.”
Today I stood looking around my yard, now sadly devoid of many of those beautiful plants. One by one they expired…
Whatever the cause, only a few remain to waft the air with their perfume this June. It is a great life lesson to deal with the thorns because at least there are roses.
As I stood looking, I had mixed feelings about the plight of those roses. It was actually a relief I didn’t need to prune them and feed them and chase away the aphids, but on the other hand I was sad to miss their beauty.
Life is like growing roses. If you don’t plant you won’t reap, if you don’t tend to responsibilities they may fade on you. Some varieties are hardier than others, and even among the same varieties there will be differences. Part of their success and beauty will be where they are planted.
Well, I do go on — parallels everywhere…“A garden is a thing of beauty and a job forever,” advised British actor Richard Briers
Enjoy the first day of summer. And remember, life is all about stopping to smell the roses. But we have to plant some first.
Photo courtesy of Woodlawn Garden Center and Nursery
Disclaimer:I am a customer of Woodlawn Garden Center and Nursery in Malvern. I love the place, think the owners and staff are fabulous.
So a while back I heard that Woodlawn was going in front of Willistown Supervisors to in essence get permission for a wine tasting room in one of the structures on their property. (Those who patronize Woodlawn and live near by know the tremendous effort the owners of Woodlawn have put into a property that had prior to their ownership looked run down – and the property was loaded with all this odd statuary that made you wonder if whomever at the time was a hoarder or something.)
Well Willistown turned them down. They had LCB approval too. What I find interesting is Willistown seems to have no problem putting small businesses through their paces. I mean really? An environmental impact and traffic study for what amounts to an interior decorating project and occasional wine tastings? I have to wonder if Applebrook Golf Club wanted to do this would there be the same “issues”? If Toll Brothers or say Bentley Homes wanted to do this would their be the same “issues”?
I mean did those fat cat supervisors in Willistown actually visit the site? We’re not talking the Stables Bar in Phoenixville or the Alley Pub in Frazer. Or some speakeasy. What a crock.
Dumb with a capital D. I mean d’oh does Willistown even begin to understand the success that is the Brandywine Wine Trail for example? A lot of those wineries aren’t so far away from this location. And it isn’t like Blair Vineyards who was to be the partner in this is some den of iniquity.
I wonder, will they burn books and ban farmers markets next? Can it be said Willistown loves big developers and hates small businesses?
The Willistown Board of Supervisors denied a conditional use application that would have allowed Woodlawn Garden Center to sell wine at its location on Paoli Pike.
Woodlawn’s owners Dave and Rebekah Laughlin Bowser were planning to open a “wine garden” in partnership with Kutztown-based Blair Vineyards.
In a 3-0 vote Monday night, the supervisors rejected the garden center’s application, based on a recommendation from the township solicitor…..In an email sent before the decision, Rebekah Laughlin Bowser said they had received an approval letter from the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, but still had to contend with local zoning regulations. She said Woodlawn had a legal right to sell wine from small, local producers as an agricultural product.