Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Autumn Roses

The weather has cooled off and we have had some rain – a decent 28mm (just over an inch) in my gauge last weekend. And with the cooler weather comes new growth and roses, so today’s post is just about the photos.


This is David Austin English rose, Heritage.


A new one for me, David Austin rose, Abraham Darby.


My first ever rose purchase, hybrid tea Mr Lincoln.


Another Austin rose, this is Skylark.


The buds on floribunda, Bridal Pink.

Every home should have one, Iceberg in full display.

This is a Noisette rose, Madame Alfred Carriere.

And last but not least, climber Clair Matin.

Friday, 11 April 2014

Meet my Best Friend

Today I want to show you my Best Friend rose. Part proceeds from the sale of this hybrid tea go to the RSPCA, hence the name.


 Advertised as being a hot plum pink, this is a great rose to add a splash of colour amongst the other softer colours. I have three of these and I am considering more if I can find the space. This colour is surprisingly hard to find amongst roses. I have one other rose, David Austin’s new rose, Young Lycidas, which I bought last year that has similar colour, maybe slightly darker. I can’t give you a verdict on that at this stage because it is too new, although it seems to be a case of so far so good.

Best Friend doesn’t have too many thorns. It’s vigorous (by which I mean it doesn’t take too long to grow) and it flowers really well. Currently, as you can see, this one, a standard, is having a spectacular autumn flush. And yes it is very fragrant to boot. It’s an average sized rose which means it grows to around 1.5 metres (5 foot).

VERDICT: I highly recommend this rose. It’s readily available at local Perth rose nurseries and bare-root from interstate sellers, often as a standard.

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Summer Series Eucalyptus ‘Summer Red’

This is the small flowering gum ‘Summer Red’ which is in flower now.

It’s a hybrid grafted form that was originally introduced to make it possible to grow these in the eastern states. I’ll let Angus Stewart from Garden Drum explain

The strategy [the breeder] chose was to hybridise Corymbia ficifolia, the red flowering gum from around Albany in south-west Western Australia with the swamp bloodwood, Corymbia ptychocarpa from northern Australia, which has the same spectacular terminal flowers common to all the Corymbias, but is obviously much better equipped to cope with the humidity and heat of northern Australia. By crossing those two species together, we get a group of hybrids which has been marketed as the Summer series – ‘Summer Red’, ‘Summer Beauty’ and ‘Summer Snow’, a white variety.

It’s a brilliant tree with spectacular clusters of red flowers that literally drip nectar when they first open. These fill the air with a fresh sweet fragrance that rivals any rose. New growth is red. It’s been extremely healthy too; usually native trees are a bit prone to scale in my experience.

It’s supposed to be a relatively small tree I think. I prune mine down to about 2.5 metres in autumn because I need to let light in to other plants on its southern side and for my frog pond (it’s called that but there are no frogs in it – yet. I’m confident one day there will be…) that sits below it. Over a summer it grows back to I guess around 4 metres. It never complains and bounces back to its usual attractive round headed form.