Rose Cuttings – October, 2007

First Blooms

This year is proving to be no different than any other year in the varied expressions of our spring flowers. Mother Nature always changes the amount of rain we get, the intervals of cold, the warm-ups, and even the winds that make our plants behave differently than the year before.

My ‘Lady Banksia’ roses are usually the first to bloom, but this year, ‘Cherokee’ beat her to the punch. Even more remarkable is that some of my late-blooming roses are looking like they’re going to bloom before my banksias.

In another case, I was very deliberate to put white flag irises under my ‘Old Blush’ roses thinking that because they are both early spring bloomers, they would bloom together and create an awe-inspiring floral display. Out of the 12 years that we have watched them grow together, only two years have they bloomed in harmony.

I used to take notes on what perennials would look great with what roses, but every time I combined the pairings, one would tend to bloom before the other or vice versa. I think the message is to enjoy what you get each year, as nature is the ultimate artist.

If you are interested in seeing all the curves that Mother Nature has thrown us, and how ultimately she seemed to know what she was doing, come visit the Antique Rose Emporium display gardens, either in Independence or San Antonio. They are gorgeous. The bluebonnets are beginning to peak, roses are beginning to come into their full bloom and perennials are awakening, all in time for this wonderful spring weather we are experiencing, in spite of our recent cold spell.

Don’t miss our Spring Open House throughout the month of April. Both locations will be having Easter Egg hunts on Easter Saturday, and each location will have an art show as well as other fun activities. Please check our Web site for all these great spring events:

About the author: Mike Shoup is the owner of the Antique Rose Emporium. Visit the ARE Brenham and San Antonio display gardens for endless ideas on landscaping with roses, and to order roses online, visit

Posted by Neil Sperry
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