San Fernando Valley Rose Society
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Part 2, later in April:
We’re fortunate that our gardens were visited by the rains of the past few weeks. Rainwater helps rinse salts delivered by city water from our soils. Rains also rinse a tiny bite of nitrogen from the air into our soils to assist in feeding our gardens. That’s the plus side of rains. The flip side of rainy days is that insects breed and thrive in the water collected in containers, trash cans, dishes under containers. Also there are insects that thrive on the insects that grow in standing water. Make sure that you check your garden and pour out standing water.
Mosquitoes are on the horizon. I deliberately leave out a small ceramic container that collects rain water just to see what bugs are in the area I’ve already seen mosquito larva. I don’t like mosquitos. Unfortunately, mosquitos really like me. Dump water out of containers.
The main difference for me between the two containers is that one has a rolled rim and the other doesn’t. I’m replacing all of the roll rim containers in my garden and in one of my clients gardens. My assistant and I were going to move several roll rim containers at a clients. It wasn’t pleasant to realize that a number of snails had collected under the rim. I don’t have snails at my home. An organic combatant is used occasionally. Also, there are opossums in my area and they love to munch on snails. Maybe they are a late night crunchy snack.
The roll rim containers at my house had collected spiders. I’m not a fan of finding and annoying eight legged critters. The two remaining roll rim containers at my house are going.
Part 1, earlier in the month:
Hello, Rose Lovers,
Is Spring time on the way? The answer in NO. Springtime in the San Fernando Valley is right after the heat of Summer breaks, in October or November, and the temperatures are correct for cool season plants. We basically have 2 seasons; Hot and Cool. The Northern areas of L. A. County like Gorman, have 4 seasons where cherries, peonies, rhododendrons, etc. thrive. I don’t plant those here in the SFV and I don’t plant citrus in Gorman. This last October, I planted in my and my clients’ gardens: lettuces, dill, cilantro, strawberries, peas, pansies, violas, stock, cyclamen, snapdragons, bare roots, etc.
It’s April. April means preparing the garden for the Hot season. Check your watering systems, feed your roses, finger prune your roses to shape them, keep feeding cool season vegetables, ornamentals lawns, etc. And importantly, it’s time to check the MULCH in your garden. Time to plant: tomatoes, squashes, basil, peppers, angelonia, petunias, impatients, vinca, etc. A good way to know what to plant is to visit a garden center.
These are my suggestions and what I do in my and my clients, gardens for getting the roses ready for the HOT season. Check watering systems, feed, mulch, finger prune, add minerals if necessary. I always preemptively attack insects and diseases in advance of their usual appearance. I’m an organic gardener and use organic products exclusively. I strongly recommend that the directions be read and followed on whatever products are your preference.
The roses that I care for are covered with buds, showing color, and are just coming into a strong bloom cycle. April is another fantastic month to be in the garden. Get ready to pick bouquets, breath deeply of fragrance, and walk in the garden. I’ll admit to being besotted with roses. The first rose I remember was when I was (as I’m told) 2 years old. The fragrant and very red, RED rose was growing next to my grandparents home in Rochester, New York. Ever since then it’s been less lawn and more roses.
I strongly recommend that we share photos of our rose gardens! Here are a few photos of my garden. (Click to enlarge)
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