Temecula Valley Rose Society Newsletter for January, 2022
President's Message, by Virginia Boos
It's a new year, with new hopes and dreams, new ideas, and a new Board and officers. Don't hesitate to make your thoughts known to us. We have already discussed many plans for the future. We are motivated and hope you will join us with your own enthusiasm.
A member directory for 2022 is in my plan and we will be offering an orientation session for new members to acquaint them with our organization and committees, as well as our history. This is an important issue and we would like your input with ideas to make this successful. Contact a Board member to tell us what would be helpful to you.
Our time away from personal contact has been difficult, but the technology is now available so that we may be able to hold hybrid meetings, allowing 3 options. In person at the library, GoToMeeting at home and a big screen at Rose Haven Heritage Garden could be the choices. Stay tuned!
We need to get acquainted and feel comfortable again. When there is a chance, say "Hello", pop a big smile and take a moment to introduce yourself. We all appreciate that human connection.
The list of opportunities to work with YOUR rose society is endless. So don't be hesitant, we can use your help. It's needed and very welcome. We are all partners in this effort. Sending a HAPPY NEW YEAR greeting.
January 2022 Program
Date: Thursday, January 20, 2022 Time: 10:00 a.m. Place: Temecula Library, Community Room, 30600 Pauba Rd., Temecula Topic: Member Friendship Tea
Come and ring in the New Year with tea and friendship and review our 2021 30th Anniversary achievements and get updates on our 2022 projects at Rose Haven Heritage Garden. Bring your friends and other rose lovers. Tea will be served.
An extra TVRS online meeting educational opportunity will be Saturday, January 15, 2022 at 10 a.m. Our speaker will be Gaye Hammond from the Houston Rose Society with her presentation - "OH #!&* - I DID IT TO MYSELF ! " (and how to fix it if you did).
Gaye is a Master Rosarian and Exhibitor and will help us bring back our roses from many mistakes that happen in our gardens! She is seeing an increase in reports of damage to roses that have been unintentionally caused by the gardener (or neighbors).
Unfortunately, this type of damage is never discussed in resource books so gardeners are left scratching their heads until they find someone like Gaye that has either done it to herself, or seen it done by someone else.
The program will shine a light on gardener-caused rose maladies, as well as what to do to bring your plants back around to health.
Happy New Year! Have you seen the "Hips" on our resting roses? As roses lose their petals before going dormant there are many bushes throughout the garden with colorful hips on display right now. Two of those with superior hips are "Mellow Yellow" in the Driveway area and the climbing "Dortmund" along the fence in the Picnic area. Hips are high in antioxidants and Vitamin C. Think Rose Hip Tea and the various benefits for health, plus the many uses in cosmetics.
"Mellow Yellow" is a hybrid tea rose with big blossoms, hence larger size red hips after blooms fall off (see photo). "Dortmund" is a climbing pillar rose from Germany with cherry red flowers and a white center. The hips are a bright orange in autumn but loose some vibrancy this time of year. There are also many roses all over the garden with smaller hips which are the favorite of birds.
Please come out and enjoy the garden and check out the rose hip beauties.
Rose Care FUNdamentals, by Frank Brines
ARS Master Rosarian
Happy New Year. Let's hope this one is an improvement over 2021!
This month I'm going to help you get ready for the major late winter pruning you should do in late January to late February. (I'll provide details on pruning in my February column.) Temecula Valley Rose Society will host a pruning demonstration Saturday January 22 at Rose Haven Heritage Garden (30592 Jedediah Smith Road in Temecula, just a few blocks north of Temecula Parkway. You can also check local newspapers and nursery websites for schedules of hands-on pruning classes at different locations.
Please bring clean, sharp, by-pass pruners in good working condition, and be prepared to learn and to lend a hand pruning under experienced direction. This will be a great opportunity to get your questions answered, hone your skills, and boost your confidence.
As much as you'd like to have blooms as soon as possible, don't jump the gun! Some gardeners think pruning in December or early January will give them a head start on flower production, but that's a delusion. First, even if January brings exceptionally warm air temperatures, the soil will still be quite cold, so the roots (and stems) will not be "revved up" for much active growth.
Your head start won't amount to much. More importantly, if early pruning is followed by a hard frost you'll probably lose the tender young growth and have to prune again. Will the remaining canes be long enough and have enough stored energy for vigorous spring growth? Will you have enough outward facing buds? Probably not. Simply stated, pruning too early will set back stem growth and flower production, and can ruin your chances of strong, well-formed plants.
I think you'll be able to hold off after experiencing the recent storms that brought plenty of cold rain and near freezing night-time temperatures to the Temecula Valley! This week's weather forecast for the Temecula Valley (and other inland valleys) is for chances of rain in most areas and lows in the mid 30s. In the Temecula Valley, the last average frost date is March 31, so you're probably safe pruning any time in February. Of course, it's always a gamble. The best advice is to watch the weather!
Late winter pruning resets the plants' biological clock, acting as a wake-up call to begin a new life cycle. You can expect the first flush of blooms about 10 weeks after pruning. But this month get your tools ready! You need a good pair of sharp "bypass" hand pruners that fit comfortably in your hand. "Bypass" pruners have a sharp curved cutting blade (which slices through the cane) and a dull curved non-cutting blade (which holds the cane in place during the cut). The sharp blade "bypasses" or slides over the dull curved blade. This is in contrast to pruners that have a sharp flat blade that comes to rest against a flat dull blade. Toss those pruners out!
At minimum, also have at least one pair of sturdy loppers handy. Each size has a maximum diameter it can cut efficiently. Using pruners or loppers that are too small on a too-large cane can damage both the tool and the cane. A hand saw with a narrow blade can also be handy if you have some older plants with large canes that may need to be removed. A "keyhole" saw works well for this.
Clean your tools — and keep them clean! Rubbing alcohol and cotton balls are ideal for cleaning cutting blades, before, during and after the job. This helps prevent disease transmission from plant to plant and you can use it as first aid on your own cuts, scratches, and punctures! (On that note, a good pair of leather gloves are necessary with long sleeves or separate pair of sleeves to protect your arms.) If a major cleaning is needed, use WD40 and 0000 steel wool; if necessary, disassemble and soak for 15 to 30 minutes, wipe clean and reassemble. Lubricant your tools with a light oil such as 3‑in‑1.
January and February are excellent months for planting new roses which are in garden centers now. There are many sources: local nurseries and reputable online retailers who specialize in roses. New stock will begin appearing in nurseries this month, and online suppliers usually ship in mid-January. (Does that tell you anything?)
Be sure to shop early for the best selection, and if you have access to it, consult your American Rose Society Buyer's Guide (which you will receive with your annual ARS membership or renewal). Still, one can usually wait until March to plant and still expect the roots to form relationships with beneficial soil fungi and become showstoppers as early as May, well ahead of the summer heat. Potted rose bushes will be optimal for these late plantings.
Roses offered for sale are rated by quality. You want only #1 roses; they are the surest guarantee of success, with all horticultural methods employed to provide satisfaction. Don't waste your time and money on anything lower. Higher quality plants have a higher chance of success, require less effort, and acclimate faster. Also, the cost of any rose is a very small fraction of what you will eventually invest in that plant over the years in water, fertilizer, pest control, and effort, so why not start with a first-quality plant?
Roses may come to you "bare root," potted, or packaged. Bare root plants are just that, usually packed in wood chips to keep the roots damp and viable. They are slower to thrive and it is best to get them early and planted immediately so they have the maximum amount of time to become established. (When you acquire a bare root rose, be sure to soak its roots in water for 24 hours, then plant promptly.)
Packaged roses are the slowest to thrive as they have been drastically root pruned to fit into the plastic sleeves. Potted roses make the quickest and most successful transition to the garden, but they also tend to be more expensive and not as plentiful in selection, and I've detected that many nurseries will pot up bare root plants immediately upon arrival to stores so inspect those selections. But as I said, the initial cost will pale against what you put into the plant in the years to come.
So, spend this month getting ready for "The Big Prune" and I will provide guidance on that all-important annual task in the February column.