With over 25 international awards, ‘Flower Carpet’ roses are ones to look out for. As the name suggests, these are groundcover roses that ramble over the ground, potentially producing an amazing 2000 flowers from spring to autumn. Back in the 1980’s, Australian nurseryman Anthony Tesselaar launched ‘Flower Carpet’ roses to the world, and our own Keith Kirsten made them famous in South Africa.
Once established, the roses are drought-resistant and low maintenance, requiring just garden shears to prune them back if necessary. They are disease resistant as well.
Just like making fine wine, developing a new hybrid takes an in-depth knowledge of roses in order to choose the right parents and artificially pollinate a variety with pollen from a different variety. These beauties have stood the test of time and become good specimens with great stories behind them.
A disease-resistant rose that grows well and flowers prolifically, bearing up to 25 large golden-yellow double blooms. This is a floribunda-type rose (‘floribunda’ is derived from the Latin ‘flowering in abundance’) so you know it’s a good performer all over South Africa. It doesn’t need much grooming to keep it neat and forms a dense hedge to around shoulder height. This rose was introduced by Ludwig’s Roses for their 30th anniversary in 2001.
Every three years the members of the World Federation of Rose Societies vote on which of the world’s favourite roses deserve to be inducted into the Rose Hall of Fame. ‘Just Joey’ made the list in 1994. This very popular rose was introduced in 1972 by UK breeder Roger Pawsey, and named after his wife. It produces large dramatic apricot blooms with a rich fragrance on a strong and healthy bush. An elegant rose to add to the list.
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Turn your garden bits into an upcycled basket just in time for the children to enjoy hunting for Easter eggs.
The Malaise Of FOPB!
Living remotely from others leads to a bigger reliance on remotes and their confusing buttons. It is terrifying if you suffer from FOPB…
Fiery shades of red and orange make for a bold autumn display.
A Haze Of Purple
The evergreen ribbon bush, a compact shrub with dull-green leaves and abundant spikes of two-lipped deep purple flowers with darker purple spots, is a selection derived from Hypoestes aristata and was developed at the Walter Sisulu National Botanical garden. It carries the apt varietal name of ‘Purple Haze’ and is widely cultivated in gardens all over the country.
The Allure Of Lavender!
This herbaceous plant, a member of the mint family Lamiaceae, is so famous that its common name is even used to describe a colour. Most of us will associate the term lavender with a gentle shade of light purple that symbolises elegance, refinement, serenity, purity and luxury – the latter two probably due to the Latin word ‘lavare’, which means to bathe and to wash. One can just imagine how the conquering and decadent Romans bathed in bunches of lavender sprigs and flowers, draped their newly washed togas over the bushes to permeate them with the fresh smell, and stacked dried stems of leaves and flowers in dark corners to repel plague-infested fleas!
Magnolia grandiflora ‘Little Gem’
If cauliflower was a stock to trade, some would have made millions in the last few years as the humble cauliflower became one of the most versatile cruciferous vegetables in the kitchen. With an increase in the popularity of flexitarian, vegan, gluten-free, keto and plant-based diets, cauliflower is no longer only baked into a cheesy casserole, but spiced and grilled as ‘steaks’ on a braai, mashed, riced, sauced, powdered, blended and made into pasta or a crispy pizza base. There are not many vegetables that can do all that!
Mushroom plant (Rungia klossii) is a bushy perennial with crisp, mushroom-flavoured leaves that are good for adding to salads or for cooking. Steam just before serving so that the leaves don’t lose their fresh green appearance.
A passion for roses
For five generations of gardeners, maybe more, Ludwig Taschner has been the friendly face of rose growing.
Time For Wild Hyacinths!
We told you in January that planting bulbs would be a great trend in 2021, so March is a good time to kick off your annual bulb planting quest with the indigenous wild hyacinths, also called Cape hyacinth, Cape cowslip and, more botanically correct, Lachenalia. Between South Africa and Namibia there are more than 120 natural species (some of which are sold in flower by specialist nurseries), but there are also many desirable hybrids bred by commercial bulb growers that are readily available in bulb form from the end of February.