I have always loved roses. They have a solid dependability I can’t resist. While other flowers come in and out of fashion, roses are the stalwart sentries of the gardening world. Reliable, predictable, and ready to please. The Mister doesn’t share my love of roses. He claims it is because his mother traumatized him by forcing him to prune and weed her many rose bushes growing up. In order to have a few rose bushes at our first house, my mother in law had to resort to buying me garden center gift certificates for my birthday. Once they were in, even he had to agree they were gorgeous. It didn’t hurt that people would stop at the house and comment on our blooms. Nothing warms a fickle heart like flattery.
So, you can imagine our surprise when we pulled up to our current home almost 3 years ago and discovered the (then) owner had an enormous rose bush collection in the front yard. It’s amazing how two people can utter the same sentence at the same time and have two entirely different sentiments.
Jules: “Oh, look! Roses! Look at all the roses!”
The Mister: “Oh. Look. Roses. Look at all the roses.”
The Mister vowed to have them ripped out within a year. I told him he could go pound sand. Three years later and we still have the roses, but we also have a yard service.
I lose track every time I count them, but we have around 48 rose bushes. Maybe 50. I know some of them are rare heirloom bushes you can’t buy anymore. It’s a pity I don’t take better care of them, but lucky for me I live in an environment very hospitable to roses. One of the many wonderful things about living in California–and my desert-like environment in particular–is the extended bloom time. Our bushes will bloom from April until October with nary a pinch or deadhead from me.