Now that it is mid-June we have nearly reached the pinnacle of summertime. The dusty walls almost have as many rose blooms as they do bricks and all around the garden, buds are bursting.
To celebrate this time of year and in particular, give a gentle nod of appreciation to the many beautiful rose varieties in the garden, I thought I would include some of their blossoms in my flower arrangements this week.
From the large number of roses on display throughout the garden I have chosen only five. My decision was based on how well I expect the thorny sprigs to perform as cut flowers and how long they will keep until they need to be replaced.
Colour too, is always a consideration. How will they look against another? Do the rosettes compliment the colour of other flowers and foliage in the arrangement? Are the buds and foliage attractive too? Can they hold their own as a single stem in a modest vase alone? How perfumed is their scent?
Here are the five roses I picked.
The preparation consists of placing the freshly cut sprigs into cold water immediately and then leaving them somewhere shady and cool until they are needed. I picked these in the evening. Morning is also good, but not in the blazing heat of mid-day, as the blooms spoil too quickly.
I bruised the base of each stem lightly with the back of my secateurs to let water be better absorbed and de-thorned where necessary to allow the stems to glide well into position without damaging other stems in the process. Rosa ‘Albertine’ was the only one that really needed this treatment.
I made up one simple arrangement of two or three sprigs in a small blue bottle and another more elaborate display using two rose cultivars combined with other traditional cut flower companions such as peonies, sweet williams, flowering sage, wormwood, lady’s mantle and sweet peas. They are all quintessential flowers that you might expect to find in any romantic rose garden and indeed, are looking spectacular in the garden here.
I hope you are not only encouraged to admire all the roses in the garden, but also feel inspired to grow some of your own and then pick one or two to put on your window sill.