Posts Tagged ‘more roses’

Spring, Roses, Wind and lots of thorns….

April 18, 2011

10 Year Old Cecile Brunner, Almost Gone with the Wind

We were planning an assault on the landscape this weekend, but we didn’t figure on violent rain and fiercer winds.  The picture above is of a very cut back “Cecile Brunner”, one of the best of climbing roses we have planted.  We awoke after a night of pounding winds and rain and upon wandering downstairs, something was different.  The front room was flooded with light.  Looking out of the windows along the fireplace, I saw the reason:  this huge rose bush had completely slipped its moorings and  fallen in a clump on the patio.  I was concerned the chimney had gone with it, but no, it was still up there, looking very naked.  My husband said he could salvage all, but after breakfast and coffee. I  didn’t believe he could bring it back to place of honor on the chimney.  I got out clippers and cut as much blooming rose as I could, thinking it would be easier for him to push and secure back in place.

Nothing doing.  That rose bush probably weighed 100 lbs with all the  blossoms.  He decided  a ‘block and tackle’ would be the answer  and throwing open the two long casement windows upstairs on either side of the chimney he got lots of  rope. He made some interesting knots and slowly we pulled it back into place….sans half  the blossoms.

Then he had to get UNDER the rose bush and secure it with wire and concrete nails to the brick.  This wasn’t easy, and the thorns made it even more difficult.  We have been picking  thorns from hands, arms, and in one case, his back.  Cecile Brunner got his pound of flesh.

Spring has sprung with a vengeance.  It is a remarkably beautiful spring, with that particular clarity of light that only lasts for one or two months at best in Atlanta.  It is now past daffodil and tulip time, azaleas are peeking and iris  in full bloom.  This year I planted “Dutch Iris”, different from the usual Bearded Iris, and the colors are remarkable.  They seem to be much more reliable bloomers than my old iris, but perhaps I haven’t given the bone meal dressings, etc. that iris desire?   I love the gray-green leaves, with or without a purple bloom at the top, and each year they seem to multiply…still without many blossoms. But I am impressed with the Dutch Iris, and though they look delicate, they bloom altogether for quite a show in a bed.

A few Dutch Iris in iron wash pot

More Dutch Iris, almost in bloom....

What fueled the assault on the property were a few plantings I bought from a local nursery.  At least twenty years ago we planted a “Blue Girl” rose, a delicate lavender rose that died quickly.  I swore I would never plant another one, but there was one in bloom with the promise of more blossoms on the rack. It was so lovely and delicate and the scent was so delightful I couldn’t resist. Plus, it was next to some god awful screaming red shrub roses and orange ones, too. “Blue Girl”  towered above these like royalty.  Paired with Mainacht salvia (deep blue) and Pink Salvia with white mugwort, it scratched a particular itch.  It was an answer for a very raw spot in the garden foundation.

Rose "Blue Girl" and Salvia

I’ve lost the rest of my post twice now, so I guess that’s a warning. I did put in about 15 new roses, but the jury is still out on these.  “Michelangelo”, “April in Paris”, “Fragrant Cloud”, “Pink Promise”, and am awaiting the luscious bare root: “Graham Thomas”.  This last rose is a remarkable yellow climber, never without butterscotch blooms.  They are of the old cabbage rose form and one of the most fragrant of the English roses. I’ll end with a picture of the Bonicas to bloom (from last year) and a poem.

I can wait.  Spring is a short season here, but the beauty is worth the waiting.

Lady Nyo

Bonica Rose on Gate


Spring comes drumming through

Breaking up ice in the creek

Destroying a beaver dam

And with the unexpected noise-

The un-damming of my heart

A softening of my bones

A juiciness of loins

A waving of budding branches

In a new born wind-

Encircling tender arms-

A phantom will o’ wisp lover.

Spring comes drumming through,

Cracking open where winter nailed me shut.

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2010, from “White Cranes of Heaven”, published by, 2011

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