Like the majority of my gardens now, The Arcade is suffering from lots of weeds and very little mulch. Storms we had on Sunday made the soil perfect for pulling weeds and, while I was in a holding pattern for the plumbing consultation for The Shack on Wednesday ... I spent Monday and Tuesday getting this little garden back into shape.
I say "little" because it holds only ten roses ... not 'little' at all in reality. The structure is 54 feet long and 10 feet high. The bed that holds the roses is 7' wide.
Which roses, you ask?
1. 'Pink Perpetue'
2. 'Rhode Island Red'
4. 'Isabella Skinner'
5. 'Henry Kelsey'
6. 'Swan Lake'
8. 'Pink Pillar'
9. 'White Cap'
As I was pulling weeds, I decided that now is the perfect time to make some changes I have been thinking about. First, though, I had to get the weeds out.
For the first couple of years, I was very happy with my rose choices on The Arcade. Fast forward to 2013, and I think I'm in the mood for a little change. Six of the ten roses here please me greatly. There is nothing wrong with the other four, I just had the urge to switch things out ... to plant four different roses in this garden instead. The roses that I am replacing are:
Cut back for transplanting.
Cut back for transplanting.
The tag is wrong. I thought this rose was 'Heidelberg' when I planted it, and I never bothered to update the tag.
The pink flowers are from the next rose 'Parade', arching over into Swan Lake's space.
Ready to transplant.
I don't have photos of the flowers on the four new replacement roses yet ... they're too small and haven't flowered yet. For the record, they are Movement, Pirontina, Orfeo, and Looping. (each name links to that rose's page on Help Me Find, so you can see what they look like from other people's photos.)
With the weeds removed and new roses planted, it was time for mulch. In the past, I used thick layers of newspaper under my mulch, but the soil here degrades anything organic like that at an unbelievable pace ... and soon I'm right back where I started, with weeds and nothing to help prevent them. Landscape fabric under my nursery benches did a super job of smothering weeds for the past two years, so now I'm using it under any mulch that I apply. I cut large holes in the landscape fabric for the roses, then I cover the holes with newspaper before adding mulch.
It's no surprise that my two day job stretched into an extra day. By the end of Wednesday, I had made great progress. All that's left to do now is to cut back 'Pink Pillar', 'Parade', and 'White Cap' so I can lay fabric and put mulch underneath them. Can't do that right now, though, because there's a bird nest in 'White Cap' and I don't want to disturb it.
Accomplishments like this serve to fuel my motivation, and I'm all energized to keep at it and see how much of this place I can whip into shape. Not resting on my success with The Arcade, on Thursday I attacked the roses and weeds in the Hybrid Tea Garden in the front yard (with the generous assistance of my friend Robert). Weeds there are gone, Preen is applied to prevent any new sprouts, and the first two rows of landscape fabric are down. Today, it is raining ... which forces me to stay in the house and take a day off from outside work ... but it loosens more weeds, so I get right back at it tomorrow. (This is really therapeutic!)
What are you planning to do this weekend?