Why don’t gardeners die, they just spade away? Because we have to see our plants grow to their full potential! We have to see the fruits and flowers of our labor, and that takes time and we’re very patient people.
Otherwise, why would we spend a whole afternoon at a rose auction to buy rosebushes without any flowers on them? Because we know they’re going to be gorgeous and smell wonderful once they start blooming this spring.
I love the South Coast Rose Society and all the people who belong to it! They are so passionate about their roses, as though they were their own children. So when I saw Sharon Van Enoo who’s an amazing Rose Goddess who taught me how to treat my climbers, I immediately asked her which roses she recommended at the auction that “smell good” and are “good for cutting”. That’s a great opener for anybody who loves roses, but even more so for someone with as much experience as Sharon, who acted as the auctioneer yesterday. She used to prune the bushes at the Huntington, and if you know anything about their rose garden, you know they have hundreds of rose bushes!
But what I love best about rose lovers is the way they are around rosebushes. The President of our club, Bill Knebel bumped into Sharon’s hair with one of the thorny rose canes, and what did she do? She laughed! It reminded me of the time that I was visiting Michael, our resident Rosarian Extraordinaire at his homestead of 350+ rosebushes, and he and I were climbing around his cutting garden. You have to imagine Michael, whom I love, trying to get around some really thorny rosebushes, getting caught by one in the pants, and so stuck that I had to free him or he would’ve had to cut himself out (would he have cut his pants, or the rose cane first?)
Are we embarrassed by our roses? NO! We love them and we know we’re going to get snagged sometimes; that’s part of the deal. Sometimes, even when using my gloves, I get stuck and boy, it hurts, but I’ve noticed that it doesn’t hurt for very long.
There’s a word for the beauty inside a flower that comes from its totality. The word is urpflanze, and it stands for the essence of the flower that resides somewhere inside it. You cannot see this essence; it has to be taken in as a whole. The thing I think all rose lovers appreciate is that it takes some time to be with your flowers and really breathe them in, and that’s what gives us gardeners the life force I was writing about earlier.
We get a 10% discount at South Bay Gardens in Redondo Beach for belonging to the Rose Society and picking up coupons at that auction. If you love roses, the $20 yearly fee is well worth the price of membership.