Welcome to the Rose Festival… and welcome back to the rain! Not only the rain, we have also seen some pretty strong winds and drenching downpours in the form of thunderstorms. As we start June lets hope that the weather smoothes out. The spring is winding down and it means that soon we will be having a lot warmer weather. Now is the time to mulch your garden if you haven’t done so yet. That extra layer will help hold in the moisture and protect your plants during the upcoming heat! We got a load of mulch from Grimm’s Fuel(503-636-3623) blown in last year and it made all the difference in the world.
Before the final spring festivals wind down you need to get out and catch some of the best blooms of the past few years. In this week show we will share a couple of locations for you to check out. Don’t forget about next weekend either. William and Judy will be at Heirloom Roses to help them celebrate Rose Days. They will be at the nursery from 11am to 3pm with goodies and samples to giveaway. You can find out more at www.HeirloomRoseDays.com. Join us then!
This week we featured...
Red’s Hardy Plant Tour
We very seldom feature private gardens on the show. We will feature them when they are open for visitors on special occasions. This week we had the chance to stop by the gardens of Dick and Karen Cavender. Both Dick and Karen have been guests on the show before as members of the Portland Rhododendron Society. We have always wanted to visit their garden and now you can too. We stopped by to get a preview of their garden as it will be open this coming Sunday, June 3rd. It is being opened for members of the Hardy Plant Society of Oregon as part of the ‘members only’ tours, but Dick and Karen have said we could invite our viewers! The Hardy Plant Society is a great organization and they have open garden tours like this throughout the year. Dick and Karen would like everyone to stop by and see the garden so maybe people will be motivated to join the society! Dick showcased a couple of plants that were really in their full glory. The Chilean Fire Tree (Embothrium coccineum) was a blaze of red as the tree was covered in deep red blooms. We also saw the native Western Azalea (Rhododendron occidentale) which was also loaded with blooms. The Cavenders have been growing rhododendrons for years and their garden is packed with them! It is a spectacular garden! If you get a chance stop by on Sunday between 10 and 5, they are located at 15920 SW Oberst Lane, 1 mile south, on Ladd Hill Rd. in Sherwood.
Adelman Peony Gardens
We just passed the end of May and that means the peonies are blooming. These easy and worry free plants are great in the garden and the best place to see them is Adelman Peony Gardens (503-393-6185) near Brooks. We visited a couple of years ago when they first planted their display garden and now that garden is looking fantastic! The plants are in full bloom and we are being treated to a show like we haven’t seen in years. Carol Adelman showed us around the garden and told us about common problems that the home gardener might be experiencing. She first showed us how to get a stronger plant by pulling off the side buds from your peony stalks. This lets your peony stand tall if it rains. Of course you can leave the side buds on and that will give you more blooms. We also asked about ants on peonies. A lot of people are worried about the ants on their plants. There is nothing to worry about. They are there because the plant is pushing sugary sap up the stems to the buds and the ants are just enjoying the feast. It is not causing harm to your plant. They will disappear after the flower blooms because the sap is gone! They are open everyday from 9 to 6 until the 17th of June. They also have events happening every weekend so check out their website for more information.
Schreiner’s Iris Gardens
Another of the showcase flower events in our area is the Open Gardens at Schreiner’s Iris Gardens (1-800-525-2367). We stopped by and found that the blooms are at their peak. The spring has been great and the blooms have responded. Steve Schreiner took us out to the display garden to show us the great mixed beds. Schreiners is known for their great display beds and this year they are amazing! It is hard not to have fun with all this wonderful color. The scent in the display gardens is intoxicating. People forget that most iris have a wonderful smell. Each bloom will remind you of candy, sugar, bubble gum or some other great smell. In addition to the colors and smells they can also have some pretty interesting names. A couple of Steve’s favorites include ‘Babboon Bottom’, ‘iwanna iguana’ and ‘Unstable Gene’. The flowers in the garden are also wonderful because they are all labeled and are easy to see even if you have limited mobility. Iris also make great cut flowers and you can pick up growing tips for your own garden, though they are one of the easiest plants to grow. They like full sun, have little or no disease and other than slugs, they have no pest problems. If you want to see the fields or the display garden you have plenty of time to do so, they will be looking good until the middle of June. Stop by and check out all the colors!
Parr Fence Post Repairs
One of the most annoying things in the garden is when a fence post starts to lean. Sometime it is just one fence post that is causing all the problems. To get some ideas on how to fix an errant post we stopped by Parr Lumber (866-214-7277) and talked to Amber. She showed us two new products that will help fix the problem. The first product was the E-Z Mender. This was a sleeve that you could drive into the hole with your old post and then bolt the old post to the sleeve. You can also drive one in on the other side and bolt the two sleeves together for a tight fit. The other product was the Stur-D bracket. This one is an angled piece of iron that you place next to the concrete that is already in the ground. You bolt the iron to the old post and then just add a little cement to secure the iron in the ground and to the old concrete plug. Both have had good response. Of course for a more permanent solution you can replace the post, or the entire fence. In either case the experts at any Parr location can help you out.
Rosarian Rose Contest
For over 100 years the Royal Rosarians have been the official greeters to the city of Portland and have been ambassadors of good will to guests of the city and the world. Since 1938 they have also sponsored the Royal Rosarian Foundation Rose Garden Contest. Sir Knight John Creegan met us at the International Rose Test Garden at Washington Park in the Royal Rosarian Garden to tell us about the contest and how people can join. The contest has many categories and is open to anyone within a 20 mile radius of Pioneer Courthouse Square. Generally they ask that gardens contain at least 25 roses to enter, but there are categories for special gardens that can have as few as 12 roses. Check out the Royal Rosarian website for details. Just click on the ‘Foundation’ link for all the rules and an entry form. The entry period ends on the 11th of June. Judging takes place on the 17th and 18th followed by the awards presentation on June 26th at the Rosarian Garden.
If you get a chance you need to stop by the Rosarian Garden at Washington Park and see all the great flowers. It also contains plaques for all the Rosarian Prime Ministers to date. They also have a new statue that you have to see! And remember the Rosarian slogan… ‘For You a Rose in Portland Grows’.
First Blooming Roses
Since it is Rose Festival time we thought we would head to Heirloom Roses (503-538-1576) and see if they could tell us which rose is the first one to be blooming in their gardens. Cheryl joined us in the garden to fill us in on which roses bloom first. She mentioned that the first roses to bloom are usually the species roses. The one that always seemed to bloom first in the garden was ‘Mary Queen of Scots’, but this year she isn’t even close to bloom yet. One that is blooming is ‘Eden’. This rose was in full bloom on the fence behind Cheryl and William. Also a lot of the climbing roses were just popping out all over. The amazing part of the garden this year is the number of plants that will be blooming in just a few days. There was one bush that William called a ‘smoke bush’ because of the ‘haze’ of buds that were covering it. You can get your chance to see some of these great blooms on any day, since the gardens are open to the public from dawn to dusk. The best time to see them may be on the weekend of the 9th and 10th of June. That is when Heirloom is having their annual Rose Days celebration. They will have live music, wine tasting, garden walks and free popcorn. You can also buy food and pick up your favorite perennial. William and Judy will also be there and will be giving away free samples of fertilizer from Black Gold and holding drawings for Dramm watering tools on the 9th from 11 to 3. Check out their website for more details.