Into the orchard again...

Some days I know I am a good gardener. Some days I know I am not. Today I headed out with gloves and tools to do more trimming and pruning of the roses in the orchard. And it didn't go all that well.

But first, an orchard rose archway inventory (sorry to be tedious). Copied below is my orchard rose list written six years ago in 2016. 2020's updates are italics. This is supposed to embarrass me into action.

Orchard Archway Roses

13. 2 X Souvenir de la Malmaison : [too shady, not so many blooms, but pretty.]
12. 2 X Star of Holland : [both roses spindly, in poor health.]
11. 2 X Uetersen : [LHS Non-climbing but RHS climbing upwards. Finally! Yippee!]
10. 2 X Chevy Chase : [archway completely uprooted. Rose too vigorous, oops. Big mistake.]
9. 2 X Mme Caroline Testout : [both roses spindly, in poor health.]
8. Unknown Yellow - Bantry Bay : [Bantry Bay stunted, in very poor health.]
7. Teasing Georgia - Unknown Red : [Unknown Red spindly, in very poor health.]
6. Celine Forestier - Alchymist, Westerland : [Celine Forestier in poor health. Others OK.]
5. Coconut Ice - Handel, Awakening, Unknown Salmon : [all roses on LHS in very poor health, hardly growing.]
4. Phyllis Bide - Crown Princes Margareta : [both roses OK. Phew!]
3. 2 X Parkdirektor Riggers : [both heavily pruned earlier in year, archway still on a rakish lean.]
2. 2 X Ghislaine de Feligonde : [both roses OK. Phew!]
1. Sombrueil, Summer Wine - Meg : [RIP Sombrueil. Other roses subdued. Need more sun.]

 Supposed to be the Mother of all the Hybrid Teas?
Mme Caroline Testout

Oh joy! Decisions need to be made. Will have to consult Non-Gardening Partner. It's fair to say that my thirteen archways of climbing roses are more than a bit of a failure.


To make matters worse, I misbehaved. I spent two hours pruning off dead pieces, then got the pip with the whole thing and stomped inside, leaving all the prunings in the long grass. Asked NGP what to do.

He told me I could prune back the Hazelnut trees to get more sunlight in. But he did not offer his services to help. And did I return to pick up the mess? Nope.

Much later...

A couple of days have passed, during which it's rained and rained and rained some more. And still I don't know what to do. Dig the hopeless orchard roses out? Dump bags of horse manure at their feet and wait? Plant new ones?

 Phew! Surviving, after being shifted into the Allotment Garden.
Bonica Roses

To make me feel even more of a failure, I've just assembled a list of roses which were planted in the orchard over the years and didn't make it. Some were sprayed by NGP by mistake. Some were budget rescues, and never had enough oomph. Others were completely the wrong choice, were dug out, and didn't survive the move.

 This rose should be a brilliant climber!
Sir Edmund Hillary Rose

Oh My Goodness!

OMG! There are fifteen roses on that list! And guess what? Only one, the pink Bonica (shifted and replanted) is growing well. One other, Sir Edmund Hillary, sulked on, refused to climb, and I threw him on the bonfire last year. The other thirteen just evaporated. Oooh. Unlucky.

So profuse apologies to the following : Sombrueil, Lady Hillingdon, Gloire de Dijon, Easleas Golden Rambler (a beauty, but far too big and bossy for an archway), Bloomfield Courage, two Birthday Presents, Awakening, City of London, Golden Showers, Baroness Rothschild, Ivory Magic, Prospero, and White Knight.