"The hum of bees is the voice of the garden"

Summer is upon us and the days are becoming extremely hot so that my time in the garden is earlier and earlier in the morning. No use leaving watering and other tasks too late because once the sun is up the heat builds very quickly. I love this time of year and I’m being patient waiting for new blooms on the roses after the Spring flush. Most roses this year are in some way damaged due to the high temperatures, dry conditions and extreme winds.

Sonia Rykiel Rose

Sonia Rykiel rose is a new rose in the garden this year. It was bred by Dominique Massad in 1991 and named in honour of the famous French fashion designer, Sonia Rykiel. It is a pillar style rose in the Guillot Generosa ® Collection.  I’ve planted a pair in large terracotta pots by the verandah to have beautiful blooms close to the back door for ease of picking. I’m told the flowers are best picked early in the morning and hold their perfume for quite a long time.

Fire Opal Rose blooms pictured above are one of the stand out roses this year. Bred by Tim Hermann Kordes in Germany in 2002 and introduced as a new rose this year in Australia. It is a charming healthy and fun rose that I planted en masse along one verandah edge. The semi-double creamy white blooms turn salmon pink or blush and dance in the afternoon sunlight. It has been a real winner this year. It is a Floribunda from the Kordes  Kolorscape® Collection.   The bushes are only about 60cm high, rounded, healthy with lustrous green foliage and happy flowers.

Rose blooms along the border of the garden

Early morning is my favourite time, in the garden when it is quiet with only the occasional sound of birds and for a while, all is still. An hour or so later the ubiquitous sound of bees in the garden becomes a comfort as the morning opens up and so do the myriad of birds.

Courtesy of Unsplash

Evidently, according to bee experts, bees particularly like purple, blue and yellow flowers. They appear to also like flowering gums, grevillea, red bottlebrush, native westringia, borage and plants in the daisy family. In my garden, I notice they love any type of salvia from common sage to more unusual coloured salvias. Lavender and all the various types of thyme such as creeping thyme, culinary thyme, lemon and rare thymes from Crete and Sicily amongst many other flowering herbs and perennials.

Courtesy of Unsplash

“We might think we are nurturing our garden, but of course it’s our garden that is really nurturing us.”

Jenny Uglow
Paul Cezanne Rose

My vision for the garden by the end of Spring was to be a stunning, abundant and bountiful harvest of rose blooms. Full, fragrant and beautiful. How entirely wrong could I have been? The season is so different from my imaginings. All I can do is to be patient and try again next year.

Lady of Shalott Rose

Garden as though you will live forever

William Kent
Twilight Glow Rose

Although, I heard from a rose grower in Victoria recently who said the rose blooms this year are fabulous and they are having a bumper year. Sadly, here we are very much in survival mode with hot, dry weather and the ever-present threat of dust storms and high winds. The surrounding landscape is parched, dry, burnt and dusty. The outcome for the garden is a lack of really perfect rose blooms but considering what others are going through in this drought I cannot complain. I will take advice from Emerson and continue on with an enthusiastic approach and I can only be successful eventually.

Contrast of the lush garden dry paddocks beyond

Enthusiasm is one of the most powerful engines of success. When you do a thing, do it with all your might. Put your whole soul into it. Stamp it with your own personality. Be active, be energetic, be enthusiastic and faithful, and you will accomplish your object.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Jardins de L’essonne rose pictured above is gorgeous with voluptuous blooms that sit unwavering on this healthy rose. Regal mother of pearl colours have been delightful so far this season on this Delbard Couture Collection rose.

I’ve planted these in two square pots by the fountain and they seem to be more protected and less wind blown in the frequent dust storms..  

Title quote by Elizabeth Lawrence

Content and Photos Di Baker 2019 All Rights reserved with the exception of

2 bee and floral photos from Unsplash

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