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Washington State University Extension

Garden Tips

67th Annual Rose Show

GARDEN TIPS – written by
Marianne C. Ophardt
WSU Extension Faculty
for the Tri-City Herald, Kennewick, WA Written May 28, 2015

This Saturday, May 30 the Tri-City Rose Society (TCRS) will be holding their 67th Annual Rose Show. It is amazing that this local group of rose enthusiasts has been holding this show and sharing their love of roses with other gardeners in the Tri-Cities for so many years. The show allows rose growers to show off their beauties and provides local gardeners the opportunity to ask rose experts about growing this popular bloom.

One of the Tri-Cities Rose Society’s members that will be answering questions and showing off her roses is Norma Boswell. She is a dedicated member of the TCRS, serving as editor or co-editor of the monthly TCRS Rose Herald newsletter for 33 years, plus holding the offices of secretary, vice-president, and president at different times. In addition, she is an American Rose Society consulting rosarian. This means she is strongly committed to sharing her knowledge of roses and their care with others.

Many gardeners know that roses can be difficult to grow without using chemicals for insect and disease control, but Boswell has taken on the challenge and practices organic rose care.  She does not rely on broad-spectrum insecticides for getting rid of aphids, instead she has become acquainted with beneficial insects and says, “It’s good to know what the larval stages look like so I can allow them to dine on my aphids.”

Like so many other TRS members, Boswell has lots of roses. She grows no less than 60 roses with a focus on miniature roses. What are miniature roses?  They are diminutive rose bushes that grow from 3 to 36 inches or more, depending on the cultivar. Small in stature, their blooms are also small, only 1 to 3 inches in diameter, and typically with little fragrance.

Mini’s have become increasingly popular in US gardens, perhaps because their size makes them easier to fit into the smaller yards and landscapes of today and their care is less burdensome. They can be planted amongst other shrubs or perennials in the landscape for a little “pop” of color here and there without worrying that they will take over their allotted space. Their reduced size and hardiness also make them good candidates for growing in patio containers.

Pruning can be as easy as shaping the plants with hedging shears, but this leads to dense shrubs that are more prone to disease and insect pest infestations. Rose experts like Boswell recommend pruning them much like regular roses every spring, but not as severely. Remove any canes that are dead, diseased, weak, or crossing, opening up the center and leaving healthy, vigorous canes. It is also advisable to cut miniature rose shrubs back in height by 1/3 at pruning time.

Boswell and the other TRS members invite you to join them for the 67th Annual Rose Show of the Tri-City Rose Society will be on Saturday, May 30th from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. at the Richland Community Center at 500 Amon Park Drive in Richland. If you do attend the show, look for Boswell’s mini-roses as well as her wonderful miniature rose arrangements.

Garden Tips, WSU Extension, Benton County, 5600-E West Canal Drive, Kennewick, WA 99336-1387, 509-735-3551, Contact Us

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