Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Roses get a new home

A couple of years ago, we bought a climbing rose, with the intention of building an awesome trellis over the garage door.  Well, we never got around to that.  And our rose got neglected a little, and died back somewhat, but revived itself over the winter and set out new shoots. But it wasn't until a year later that we realized the new shoots were actually from the root stock, and not from the grafted canes - so they bloomed with kind of average looking red blooms rather than the gorgeous pale pink ones that we had before.  Nevertheless, we strung some wire (far cry from that cute trellis we planned on!)  And the sad little red rose dutifully climbed up.

You can see it hanging out in the background here, in a pot with it's skinny little canes growing upwards.

One of the problems, though, was that we really intended to build it a nicer box - jackhammering away the useless sidewalk and building some kind of box/bed for it.  Well -- that part we finally did this week!

First, Dale had to use the impact drill to drill a series of holes so we could punch through the sidewalk.  Of course, we decided to do it on the hottest day we've had this spring.  But that didn't take too long, then we had to whale away on it with a sledge hammer. I tried doing that part, but unfortunately, I can only use the smaller sledge hammer, so he had to smash it a couple of times with the larger one and it broke up nicely.  Then I used the crowbar to pry all the concrete chunks out, and then dug a little tunnel under to the dirt in front so I could run the irrigation up into the box.

Then I laid out a pattern of bricks to see how many we'd need.

We finally got the last of the bricks pulled up from the hell strip, and although I tried giving them away on CL Free,  I had a bunch of no-shows and one person who came and only took half.  So I had plenty.

So we brought them to the back and tried out a nice sized rectangle.  Then we had to wait for evening because by now it was really hot!

So around 6:30ish, we went out, mixed up a batch of cement (we were out of mortar, but since this is not going to be a perfect bricklaying effort, we just went with it).

I didn't take any in-progress pictures, because the cement dried pretty darn fast.  We were just lucky to get it all somewhat nicely done.  We certainly aren't going to get any jobs laying brick.

But it's tidy enough, and ready to go - it only took about an hour or so, and it had all night to set up.  So this morning I got up and gave it a coat of paint. I had painted the bricks in the front of the house, and it looked so much nicer, so I knew I was going to do that here, too - especially since I had no delusions that it was going to look great without the paint!

After we spent so much effort getting this box built and all, we should go ahead and buy a new rose (we'll plant the other one somewhere else in the yard), since I really want white roses.

So this morning, after painting, I ran out to get some nice soil for the planter box and see if I could find an iceberg white climbing rose (I looked through Pinterest to see if I could find some good leads on what I wanted -- and the Iceberg is the one that fits the list).  And I actually found one - -not at the same place I bought the rose we previously had, although that's where I went first -- but I got a really gorgeous, healthy white Iceberg climber at Home Depot.  Hmmm....

So here it all is, planted and tethered loosely to the wires.  I underplanted it with some miniature iceplant that looks nice hanging down and has tiny pink flowers, and a lantana that I might move out later, after we see how well the rose blooms down low.  I read up on how to train the long canes to encourage blooms, so we've got a plan, but climbers often get leggy and do well to have a bushy plant at the base to hide the skinny legs.

This year, this rose will spend most of its time growing long canes up the wires, all we have to do is make sure they criss-cross and stay healthy!

So - another project and this one actually kept up on!  Maybe I'll get back in the blogging habit after all...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Looks great, Laurie! Just wondering how you hung the wires on the garage?

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