One Albuquerque Garden: A Private Oasis

Private Garden, Albuquerque

Thanks to the owner of this garden for allowing me to photograph it and use the photos here. All photographs were taken May 4, 2007. Click on the thumbnails for a larger view.

This is a very small city garden, but is artfully arranged to utilize a variety of plants. Roses are the featured plant throughout the garden, but are just beginning to bloom in early May. At the time of our visit, the brightest spots in the garden came from clematis. The clematis was truly spectacular.

Clematis ‘The President’
‘The President’

Clematis ‘The President’ with rose ‘Gold Medal’
‘The President’ with rose ‘Gold Medal’

Clematis ‘Ernest Markham’
‘Ernest Markham’

Clematis ‘Ernest Markham’
‘Ernest Markham”

As soon as walked into the garden, I was hit by the sweet scent of an Oriental lily. The flower was as lovely as the scent:
Oriental lily, FABULOUS scent!
Oriental Lily

Here is a sampling of roses in this garden. There will be many more in bloom later this month. Continue reading


Large-Flowered Climber: Royal Sunset

Royal Sunset is an oldie but goodie for the desert Southwest. It has dark green, leathery, disease-resistant leaves, large flowers that can have great form (especially for a climber!), a nice scent, and color to knock your socks off. To top it all off, it has long, shapely buds.

Royal Sunset bud; large-flowered climber

Royal Sunset, large-flowered climber

It takes about three years for this climber to get fully established. It is well worth the wait. This is a great choice for the Desert Southwest if you are looking for a large-flowered climber.


2007’s First Hybrid Tea

The first hybrid tea bloom of the year is always exciting in the high desert. One never knows exactly when to expect it, nor what it will look like. What have the late cold spells and especially the prolonged high winds done to the buds? Have thrips already damaged the bloom (for those of us who don’t like to spray, or spray very little)?

My first hybrid tea bloom this year was Gemini, one of my very favorite hybrid teas that thrives in the Desert Southwest. Someone once asked me how I could love a rose that did not have much of a scent. Take a look:


(Gemini, Keith Zary hybridizer, AARS 2000)

What is not to love? This rose blooms prolifically from first bloom to frost, has essentially disease-free foliage, and perfectly formed blooms.

According to Bob Martin, well-known rosarian, it was the top exhibition hybrid tea in 2005 (the 2006 data has not yet been provided). Also check here.

The fact that it is a top exhibition hybrid tea should not frighten away desert gardeners who just want a nice rose for the garden. This is a rose that thrives in the Southwest, is relatively disease-free, has many beautiful blooms that hold their size even in the heat, and can provide a lot of pleasure with routine care.

It is a hybrid tea that I can recommend for anyone in the Southwest who wants to grow a great rose!