Welcome to a rose is a rose, is a rose. If you love roses and gardening, here you will find stories of roses from my own rather untamed Australian rural garden and gardens from around the world that I have discovered and found inspiring in past travels.

Lady of Shalott

New to living on a rural property I wanted to start a garden, there was never a question of what I wanted to grow – roses! And so my garden began. Slowly at first, and now gaining momentum. The vision, plans, and triumphs of growing my roses may provide the motivation to get out and garden and I’ll share quotes, history and other information all about roses, gardens and gardening.

My inspiration for the style of rose garden came unexpectedly from a dear little book called ” A Gentle Plea for Chaos” by Mirabel Osler. Her book is a unique plea to gardeners to do whatever you want in the garden and to break the rules even though it will be chaotic and possibly wild, but it will be yours. A perfect garden is not the objective; it is the enchantment of gardening and the resulting sense of accomplishment and creation of beauty. A way to enjoy nature, work within it and be whimsical rather than regimented. Some may say my garden is unruly with massed roses and under plantings against the backdrop of a seasonal rural property; at times dry and parched and other times green and lush.

‘A rose, is a rose, is a rose’ is named from the words often used by Gertrude Stein in her numerous works. This may be interpreted as

‘The garden is what it appears to be and is what it is’.

“The lesson I have thoroughly learnt, and wish to pass on to others, is to know the enduring happiness that the love of a garden gives.”

Gertrude Jekyll, 1843-1932,

The garden although, rural is not large enough to walk through into various nooks and crannies as yet but can be viewed from the old Australian farmhouse verandah, paths and lawn. The back garden is flanked by olive trees and water storage tanks that create their own style restrictions. There are many issues to overcome in a rural garden that requires close collaboration between practicality and the gardener’s dreams. It is constantly in a state of change that has now started to take shape towards what I had envisaged after four years.

As a beginner gardener I’m certainly no expert. Any success I have gained is by trial and error, intuition, and recalling my parents’ exceptional green thumbs. I’ve followed my dream, had a go and made mistakes, but I learn something new about the garden every day. The garden has survived the drought, and despite the unpredictable nature of the weather has flourished. There have been disasters, with great success in some areas, and extraordinary beauty in others. The beautiful blooms, fragrance and many hours of pleasure keep me going despite setbacks that come from rural living. The garden is not grand and is what it is; a place to grow simply stunning roses I hope.

I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to.”

Marjorie Rawlings
Fire Opal

The climate of rural NSW is limiting, it is hot and dry in Summer with cold, frosty conditions in Winter, the joys of clay soil, and a rural garden’s at times bare exposure. Nonetheless, gardening has been a rewarding addition to life and a productive and beneficial way to enjoy isolation.

A quote by blogger Linda Brazil resonates with me when she says

“The most important thing I’ve learned over the years is that gardening is about the doing: the digging and weeding and watering. I may plan and plot and dream but when it comes right down to it, I garden to garden.”

When I’m away from the property, the first thing I do is inspect the garden on my return. It is exciting and thrilling to see new developments but can sometimes shock if problems have started. The garden, although humble, brings so much pleasure and enjoyment.

What I started with 2017

Once the garden began I quickly realised that to have a garden, no matter how small or large is one of the greatest pleasures in life. The rose garden is and will always be a work in progress- as garden editor and author, Thomas Cooper is quoted as saying

“A garden is never so good as it will be next year.”

Thomas Cooper

What it is in 2019

Working in the garden and appreciating the blooms as a backdrop to life in the country is agreeable and satisfying, being both peaceful and an excellent daily challenge. At once it affords a haven to be enjoyed by family and friends and at other times a quiet, tranquil spot to enjoy life. The garden to some may seem, wild and untamed, a bit rough around the edges but it provides the necessary landscape to actually be out and able to garden. The fact in this climate that we can grow anything at all is miraculous.

There is peace in the garden. Peace and results.

Ruth Stout

Content and images Di Baker 2019 All rights reserved