RSS Feed

Tag Archives: Earth-Kind Roses

Buy Discounted Tickets Now for DCMGA 2016 Fall Garden Tour

alexander yard

Five spectacular gardens by members of the Dallas County Master Garden Association will be featured on the 2016 Garden Tour set for Saturday, October 1st.  Visitors will see formal English gardens on Swiss Avenue, edible landscaping in Preston Hollow, a buzzing pollinator garden in University Park, native perennials and ornamental grass in Old East Dallas and landscaping for gracious entertaining in Bluffview.

Make your tour complete by enjoying a seasonal Garden Brunch featuring recipes from A Year on the Plate, the new master gardener cookbook.  Guests will be treated to a menu chosen from fall produce, including Iced Herb Gazpacho and Artichoke Bites.  Brunch will be served on a lovely Bluffview patio shaded by live oak trees from 11am to 1pm the day of the tour.  Visitors can also preorder a copy of A Year on the Plate, the new DCMGA cookbook, at the same location.

Presale tour tickets will be $15 and on the day of the tour, $20 each. Tickets for the Garden Brunch must be purchased ahead at $15 each.  A limited number of brunch reservations will be taken.

Presale tickets for the brunch and tour will be available soon on the website using PayPal. North Haven Gardens and selected Calloway’s Nurseries locations will sell only tour tickets in September.

Your ticket purchase will support a major fundraiser for the Dallas County Master Gardener Association. The 2016 Garden Tour is the first time DCMGA has opened its members’ gardens in three years. Please help make the tour a success by asking friends and neighbors to attend and by publicizing the tour in venues like Next Door. All profits go to fund the DCMGA educational programs and more than 30 community and school projects.



Leading TAMU Plant Pathologist to Explain Rose Rosette Disease

Are your roses exhibiting odd, thorny, or twisted growth? They probably are infected with Rose Rosette Disease (RRD), a virus that has forced the removal of thousands of roses in the Dallas area. Learn what you can do to help prevent the spread of the disease at a talk by one of the leading RRD researchers, Dr. Kevin Ong, Texas A&M University associate professor and director of the Texas Plant Disease Diagnostic Laboratory at TAMU.

The free talk will explain RRD symptoms, control, and removal of infected roses and is set for noon to 1 pm, Tuesday June 21st at the Fellowship Hall of Midway Hills Christian Church, 11001 Midway Road, Dallas.

A rose trial aimed at identifying roses that are resistant to RRD was recently installed at the Raincatcher’s Garden of Midway Hills, a project of the Dallas County Master Gardeners. The DCMG volunteers are trained by TAMU AgriLife Extension Service to distribute horticultural information to the public.

Visitors are welcome to tour the Raincatcher’s Garden and the rose trial located at Midway Hills Christian Church. Reservations are not necessary. For more details, contact Elizabeth Wilkinson,

Read up on Rose Rosette Disease here.

Celebration of Roses in Farmer’s Branch

Saturday I attended the Farmers Branch Celebration of Roses. What a privilege to hear Mike Shoup of Antique  Rose Emporium fame talk about “Pioneer Roses” and Scott Ogden, landscape artist and author teach the subject of  Moonlit Gardens.

Afterwards I happily wandered through the Farmers Branch Rose Trial gardens at 2610 Valley View Lane, Farmers Branch, Texas.

Hundreds of roses are on trial in these gardens from Earth-Kind® Roses to David Austin roses, all displayed and labeled perfectly.

Above: View of Part of the extensive Farmers Branch Rose Garden

Above: View of Part of the extensive Farmers Branch Rose Garden

For example, a rose called Jude the Obscure: “A great favourite of many gardeners. ‘Jude the Obscure’ is very free-flowering, bearing very large, incurved, chalice-shaped flowers. The petals are medium yellow on the inside and pale yellow on the outside. Its award-winning fragrance is extremely strong with a delicious fruity note reminiscent of guava and sweet white wine, which delights all who smell the flower. An excellent short shrub with strong, upright, bushy growth and light green leaves. We recommend planting it near to the house or close a seating area or path, where its delicious perfume can be enjoyed at close quarters. In warmer climates it can be trained as a superb climber. Named after the character in Thomas Hardy’s novel of the same name.”

Thanks to this description from the David Austin website, I will now be reading  Thomas Hardy!

Meet the David Austin Rose, Jude the Obscure

Meet the David Austin Rose, Jude the Obscure

Being a plant nerd, I have always wanted to see the Green Rose.  Yes, there is a rose with green flowers and it is growing in the Farmer’s Branch Rose Gardens.

Close Up of Green Rose

Close Up of Green Rose

Now that I have seen it and compare it to other rose beauties,  I will be shopping David Austin and Pioneer Roses.

Thank you Farmer’s Branch!


Get to know Farmer’s Branch aka the “City in a Park”.  Last weekend’s events included Bluegrass music, a chili cook off, and arts and crafts along with The Celebration of Roses.  Mark your calendar for future events here.

A Gardener’s Fright

There is one symbol of Halloween that no gardener wants to have in their garden.  What is it?  Witches broom.

Above: Close up of Witches Broom, A symptom of Rose Rosette Disease

Above: Close up of Witches Broom, A symptom of Rose Rosette Disease

Witches broom, a symptom of rose rosette disease, is the scourge of anyone growing roses.  Though it was for many years considered to be primarily a disease of Rosa multiflora, the wild rose which is now an invasive species in many parts of the country, rose rosette disease has become more prevalent in many areas.  Earth-Kind® roses, perhaps because they have been planted so extensively, close together, and in large groups, seem to be particularly plagued by rose rosette in the Dallas area.  However any rose may be infected.

Above: Rose Rosette Disease affecting American Pillar Rose

Above: Rose Rosette Disease affecting American Pillar Rose

Rose rosette disease is often seen in the spring but intensifies as the season progresses.  Symptoms are variable but, according to University of Kentucky’s Cooperative Extension, often include increased growth/rapid elongation of the shoots, abnormal red discoloration of the shoots and leaves, witches broom (prolific clustering of small shoots), and over-abundance of thorns.  Some of these signs may at first be confused with glyphosate (example: Round-Up) or growth regulator ( example: 2-4-D) herbicide damage.  However, rose rosette disease is progressive and plants exhibiting symptoms should be carefully monitored.  Unfortunately, sometimes by the time rose rosette disease is confirmed in an affected rose, the virus has spread to other roses near it.

The disease causing agent has only been identified within the past several years.  The rose rosette virus, called RRV, is transmitted by an eriophyid mite, Phyl­locoptes fructiphilus,, and through grafts.  The mite is extremely small and cannot fly.  However it can crawl, move from plant to plant by air currents, or attach itself to insects.

Currently there is no effective control available for rose rosette disease in existing infected plants. However the facts that it is caused by a virus and spread by a mite give some clues as to how to prevent its spread to healthy plants.  Though miticides have been tried, miticides that control spider mites are not effective against the eriophyid mite.  According to the Virginia Cooperative Extension, the insecticide Avid is registered for control of both spider mites and eriophyid mites on roses.  However, the use of an insecticide or miticide is not recommended without using cultural control methods as well.

Virginia Cooperative Extension recommends the following cultural controls.  Early detection is the key:

1)  If any wild roses are present in the area, remove and destroy them.  Continue monitoring them for regrowth from roots.

2)  Remove any suspected roses by bagging and destroying them.  Be sure to remove all the roots, both to prevent re-growth of the infected plant and to keep the virus from spreading to other rose roots nearby.  It is not recommended to plant another rose in the same space, though plants other than roses can be grown there with no problem.

3) If you live in an area where wild roses are present, avoid planting downwind as the eriophyid mite can move by air currents.

4)  Be sure to consider the mature size of each rose plant and space them so that the canes and leaves do not touch each other.  The eriophyid mites do not have wings and must crawl from plant to plant, so proper spacing makes it more difficult for the mite to move from rose to rose.

5)  Finally, purchase only healthy roses from reputable dealers.  If you detect any signs of rose rosette disease in a plant before purchasing, do not buy it.  Remember, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”


If you take all these precautions, hopefully you won’t have a frightful experience with your roses.


Pictures by American Rose Society


Rose pruning….

It takes a fearless person to prune a rose.  Brandishing its protective thorns, the row of leafless bushes awaits us like the vicious magical Whomping Willow in the Harry Potter series, ready to throw us to the winds.

Armed with loppers, protected with elbow skimming rose gloves—the closest I’ll ever come to Mia Farrow’s favorite length—we faced the prickly branches.

Where to start thinning? Like a yoga chant, the rules started running through one’s subconscious: thinner than a pencil, rubbing, main canes…

Gradually the spindly support of last year’s blooms was cast aside, a faint memory of last May’s flush of happy blossoms.  Old rubbed canes fell to stronger green upstarts.

Eventually, a bare skeleton emerged from the entanglements, a garden star ready for its next act: its primadonna performance in the dance called Spring.


Brush up on rose pruning tips here with Mariana Greene of the Dallas Morning News.

Hearts and Roses Luncheon and Lecture

Click. Click. “Oh, look at that one!”  Click. Click. “Oh, wow!” Click. Cli—Wait is this the Olympic games in Sochi?

No, it’s a bunch of lucky gardeners falling in love with roses.  Well, the first couple of rose pictures had rose expert Vicki Agee a little perturbed; seems her vibrant red roses were coming up blue on the power point.  Jim sprinkled a little fairy dust on the computer cable, and voila! The rose colors were correct, and the audience was entranced.   Vicki, who is also a Dallas County Master Gardener, spoke Tuesday at the Hearts and Roses luncheon held at the Demonstration Garden.

Above: Hearts and Roses Lunch and Lecture, 2-11-54

Above: Hearts and Roses Lunch and Lecture, 2-11-54

The rose world has changed dramatically, Vicki told us.  Breeders are adding many lovely, disease resistant, fragrant roses for the home market.   Look for shrub roses like floribundas and grandifloras, Vicki suggests. She recommended ‘Easy Does It,’ ‘Walking on Sunshine,’ ‘Pretty Lady,’ and ‘Lion’s Fairy Tale.’  Does anything smell better than a rose? For especially fragrant roses, choose ‘Francis Meilland,’  hot pink ‘Beverly,’ pink ‘McCartney,’ or pink ‘Deelish.’

'Easy Does It'

‘Easy Does It’

She also loves an old favorite Buck rose named ‘Quietness;’ its pale pink blooms mask its tough resistance to black spot.  Easy Elegance roses, Austin roses, Flower Carpet roses, and old favorites like ‘Mr. Lincoln’: the beautiful varieties made my head spin.  I wanted one of each.

'Quietness' Rose, a Dr. Griffith Buck Rose

‘Quietness’ Rose, a Dr. Griffith Buck Rose

Vicki also knows how to take care of her roses.  For fungal diseases like black spot use Neem oil for your first spray of the season.  Then spray spring and fall with a product like Banner Max or Honor Guard that contains Propiconazole.  Once temperatures reach into the 90s, stop spraying until fall.

Vicki suggests using Spinosad for thrips, because stronger sprays will also kill beneficial insects and butterflies.  Use a miticide like Floramite, Forbid or Avid for spider mites.  Pyrethrum takes care of cucumber beetles.  Fertilize with Texas T in the spring, and once roses have leafed out, use seaweed fertilizer every 2-3 weeks.  After late summer pruning, foliar feed your roses through October for maximum bloom.

An online bouquet of roses goes to Vicki for her wonderful talk and tips on a frosty February morning.  I know I wasn’t the only gardener who found new favorites to add to their flowerbeds.


Picture of lecture by Starla

Our thanks to Chamblee’s Roses for permission to print from their website.  Click here for Chamblee’s Roses.

Hearts and Roses Luncheon

rose-demo garden“Hearts and Roses”

An Enchanting Valentine’s Lunch and Lecture

At the Joe Field Earth-Kind/®WaterWise Demonstration Garden

Tuesday*February 11, 2014*11:00am

$14.00 per person*Limited to 25 Guests


Apricot-Cheese Truffles

Strawberry Spinach Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing

Old-Fashioned Chicken and Dumplings

Chocolate Boxes filled with Sugared Raspberries or Red Velvet Cake

Vanilla Cinnamon Pecan Coffee*Herbal Iced Tea


Special Presentation by Vicki Agee, Dallas County Master Gardener and Rosarian

“Landscaping with Roses” (Earn One Hour Education Credit)

  Your check is your reservation.

 Make checks payable to: DCMG.

 Email for info about mailing your check.

Payment must be received by February 1st


2013,A Beautiful Spring in Dallas

Dallas gardeners have enjoyed a long, lovely spring and I don’t think we have glowed enough about it . If you feel like glowing, make a comment at the bottom of this post.  We will send a package of seeds from our garden to the first 10!

Think back to our post, A Texas Spring?  Week after week, we have enjoyed blooms galore!

We planted these Oxeye Daisies in 2009 and this year they have been a “best of show” type exhibit. 

Oxeye Daisies Blooming at The Demonstration Garden

Our Earth-Kind® Roses have bloomed continuously as you can see looking through Lafter and Maggie. 

Earth-Kind Roses, Lafter and Maggie at The Demonstration Garden on Joe Field Road

Our Iris have finished blooming so we must say goodbye to them.

How appropriate this one is called Bye Bye Blue!

Iris with Poppy Blooming in Background


Penelope, An Earth-Kind® Rose In Our Garden

In 2007, we had the idea of having a rose trellis made out of rebar.

Rose Trellis Being Shown Off By Gail, Kim, Cindy, Jane

We planted three Penelope Roses on it.

Here is what Antique Rose Emporium says about Penelope: Massive clusters of large, pale pink, semi-double flowers fading to peaches and cream adorn this chunky shrub during the growing seasons. Fat, orange-pink hips weigh down the bush in fall and winter. This rose is an excellent choice for hedging as the bush is dense with beautiful foliage and fragrant flowers and will mature quickly.

Penelope Rose Clusters

This is the  iron trellis in 2013 smothered by Penelope and  with Abelia, ‘Edward Goucher, Abelia ‘Kaleidescope’, Dwarf Yaupon Holly, and Daylilies at her feet.

Penelope, Abelias, Daylily foliage, Dwarf Yaupon Holly


February Garden Chores

During February Dallas gardeners prepare for spring.   Several of our Dallas County Master Gardeners pruned roses at the Farmers Branch Rose Gardens and developed the confidence needed to remind us hot to tackle  17 varieties of Earth-Kind Roses at the Demonstration Garden.

We pruned the roses back to about three feet, cut out crossing and interior branches, pruned out the dead wood and excess-voila Earth-Kind Roses ready for spring.

February Rose Pruning, Mutablis Rose and Two Master Gardeners

Sarah demonstrated an ornamental grass cutting technique:  

To cut  tall grasses in a perfect mound……you go around the clump with a bungee cord, cut straight across just above the cord and pop the cord off. Sarah just happened to have a couple of bungee cords in her trunk so that we could try this technique.

Bungee Cord Wrapped Around Grass To Be Pruned

Sarah, Jackie, and Linda take it away:

Master Gardeners Cutting Back Grass

More ornamental grass pruning by Jean, Becky, Michele, and Linda:

Master Gardeners Cutting Back Grasses At The Demonstration Garden

This grass will go to the compost pile:

Clippings Going To Our Compost at The Demonstration Garden

Spring is coming and we hope you will visit us at our garden, 2311 Joe Field Road, Dallas, 75229.   Comment  if you would like to ask a question or set up tour of the gardens.


%d bloggers like this: