10 June 2011

pleasant hill? rose hill, more like!

This evening, B and I spent a few hours on the fabled long and steep slope. He planted red, yellow, and white annuals, and I wrestled with rocks and slate to plant two more Knock Out roses he bought at a local nursery. These last two are in addition to the five bareroot bushes (B calls them "sticks," and he hardly sees the point) I bought online from Miller Nurseries in Canandaigua, New York, and another plant B bought a few weeks ago. That's eight roses, eight easy-to-care-for roses that are billed as blooming from spring to frost. The pots the rose plants came in look suspiciously like the pots our pathetic 'Endless Summer' hydrangeas came in (that is, the pots are pretty, un-potlike colors with lots of superlatives printed on them). Regardless ('Endless Summer' definitely did not live up to the hype), I have higher hopes for these roses, which I have seen blooming in the medians on the West Side Highway in Manhattan, and which get rave reviews from my gardening friend Pam. We shall see. (In his book Gardening at Ginger: My Seven-Year Obsession with Designing and Planting a Personal Landscape, James Raimes says, "I think the phrase I use most often when I garden is 'We'll see.'")

A few weeks back, I moved three roses from the hell to which I had consigned them (an overgrown weed patch far from the house) to the slope. These are a musk rose called 'Darlow's Enigma,' Rosa glauca with reddish leaves, and 'Harison's Yellow' (one "r," please), an old thicket-forming rose that grows up around abandoned homesteads and that I think I've seen in the dooryards of old farmhouses in Washington County.

Already in place on the slope are a bunch of Rosa rugosa that B and I bought from the county soil and water conservation district a few years back and three Potentilla fruticosa 'Katherine Dykes' (also in the rose family, bien sรปr).

Planted, watered, and fingers crossed. Gosh, I have high hopes of seeing a somewhat continuous show of red, pink, yellow, and white blooms this summer on the slope. 

Here's a clumsy little collage of other people's photographs of the various roses (except the Rosa rugosa, which is pretty familiar). Click to make it larger!

(top to bottom, left to right; photo credits in parentheses) Knock Out Rose 'Radsunny' (from Miller Nurseries website); 'Darlow's Enigma' (from Mark of Excellence Roses website); Knock Out Rose 'Radcon' (from Miller Nurseries website); 'Harison's Yellow' (from Wikipedia); Potentilla fruticosa 'Katherine Dykes' (from Golden Hill Plants website); Knock Out Rose 'Radrazz' (from Miller Nurseries website); Rosa glauca (from ask.com)


  1. Anonymous12:54 PM

    How beautiful...especially those yellows. :)

  2. Hi, Nancy! The Harison's Yellow is a spring bloomer, but the potentilla will bloom off and on all summer. Very excited to see how all of this will turn out. We've been puzzling over the slope for some time!