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Polka

ROSE CARE FOR SEPTEMBER
by Florence Taylor, Consulting Rosarian

This spring as I was working in the rose garden at MAGC and lamenting about all of the diseased leaves on most of the roses, when I got up to climbing ‘Polka’ (in all her glory), clean leaves, lovely peach colored ruffled blooms… I knew that I had to have that rose in my garden.

Off I went to every nursery in Marin to find this rose.  Of course it was past the bare root stage and the answer was no, but they could order it for next year.  Finally one nursery said, "I think I might have one out back."  Needless to say I was thrilled.  Then here he comes with a pathetic looking rose bush with some dead canes and every disease there is.  But its label said "Climbing Polka".  That was enough for me.

We proceeded to remove the leaves and he assured me that the plant would be fine.  $29 poorer, I left with my rose and hopes that I could baby it back to good health.  I plan to plant it in the garden this fall.  Hopefully it will respond when I get it out of the pot that looks like it has been growing in for at least 5 years.

I ask myself as a Consulting Rosarian, shouldn't I have better sense than to buy an inferior plant? Shouldn’t I wait until bareroot season? Wouldn't that be much better? But no, I had to have it NOW.

So here are some words to the wise: purchasing quality plants from reputable nurseries is advised. A plant in stress from disease will generally not respond with quality blooms.

I did take cuttings from the Polka in the MAGC garden and have one lovely plant started from it.  So I have a backup if the other plant doesn't work out!


Flower

A YEAR OF ROSE CARE:

January

February

March

April

May

June

July and August

September

October

November and December


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