Recent Gardening Journal Entries
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My order from Edmunds' arrived yesterday - April 9th. I'm not complaining – since spring has sprung early here in Zone 5b – but shipping dates on their website are "early May" for Zone 5. So I wasn't really expecting the Edmunds' order to arrive for a few more weeks. I am ready for it though.
The order was 22 HTs, GRs and FLs which was shipped in 2 boxes. Roses were packed in a heavy plastic bag with some seaweed type material around the roots to keep them moist. They tried to seal the plastic bag at the top using rubber bands but that didn't really work well. I cannot say the roots/plants were dried out but I can say they were getting near that point – if I had left them in the box for a few more days some of them would have been very dry. Most of the roses were grown by Weeks (Wasco, CA) and the others were grown by Certified Roses (Tyler, TX I believe). There is no doubt the Weeks roses were larger and in better condition than those grown by Certified. I give the Weeks grown roses a solid 'A+' and the Certified grown roses a C+ or B- in comparison.
A few of the Weeks roses are absolutely humongous! Moonstone, Folklore and Neptune come to mine - biggest canes and thickest rootstock shanks I have ever seen on a bareroot rose. The size difference in some of these plants is striking. Makes me wonder if some are older than two-year plants or maybe some are younger than that. Anyhow I would expect those huge plants to be top growers right out of the gate. Only a few plants had smaller root systems, but still enough to do well in my garden. One plant in particular had several larger roots broken but on balance there was only the occasional broken or snapped root. I'm quite satisfied overall with the roots. Before soaking, I give every single root a pruning - it might only be just a snip near the end but I like to prune the roots. I also prune the canes before soaking. I try to eliminate the smallest canes so that 3 to 5 strong canes remain. This was a chore on some of those biggest plants. I do look to prune down to an outward-facing budeye but sometimes those eyes just do not cooperate! Most canes are only 5-8" when I am done (less to mulch over when planted). I do not seal the pruned canes.
In terms of preparation for planting, I will soak the roots for a few days in my "tonic" which consists of water, liquid kelp and SuperThrive. I did not measure but I probably have something like 2-3 TBS of liquid kelp per 5 gallons of water and a capful of SuperThrive (perhaps 1/3 TBS) per 5 gallons of water. I read somewhere recently of an experiment that a rosarian conducted with SuperThrive – they used it for soaking some roses to be planted and did not use it for others. The SuperThrive soaked roses leafed out in half the time that it took for the others. Of course it is raining today (Saturday) and tomorrow so unlikely to do much planting until Monday and Tuesday next week.
Overall I would give the Edmunds' experience a B or B+. I had ordered two plants of Ring of Fire but two weeks ago Edmunds' sent me a refund check and said they could not provide those. No explanation, no e-mail or phone call, no offer of substitutes, just a check. Disappointing as Ring of Fire was/is my #1 desired new rose! Contrast that with Palatine who called me two weeks ago and said my Rina Hugo was not looking too good so they called wanting my approval for a substitute they recommended. Edmunds' shipped about 3 weeks before I was expecting it. I would give Edmunds' an A- for the quality of the rose bushes. I have read some horrifying reviews online regarding Edmunds' but based on my experience I would recommend them.
I have Ispahan. Tons of blooms!
Purchased from Swiss Rose 28th March 2021
Purchased from Swiss Rose March 28 2021