I’m not a big fan of roses, but I have a special affection for Rugosa roses. They have beautiful foliage, as well as huge and brightly-colored rose hips. And they tend to be robust and healthy and trouble-free.
Over the past year I visited every nursery in my area, family-owned and big-box, and discovered that none of them carry Rugosa roses. Most of them had no idea what I was talking about when I asked, but the very knowledgeable and happy-to-talk head gardener at the most upscale family-owned local nursery (Abide-A-While Garden Center) told me that they used to carry Rugosas, but no longer do since people are almost exclusively interested in Knock Out roses now. Bummer.
So I decided to go mail-order, and found Rosa rugosa ‘Alba’ and Rosa rugosa ‘Frau Dagmar Hastrup’ (two of the varieties recommended for my climate) for a mildly painful price through Roses of Yesterday and Today. My order of bare root roses arrived in the mail on Thursday, along with my order of Jersey Supreme asparagus crowns from Burpee, and happily both were left at the front door without any signing requirements.
The roses looked great, and their roots were moist upon arrival. I planted them in their bed after work, as the sun set.
The asparagus crowns looked good, but they were bone dry upon arrival, which has me extremely concerned. I posted in the Asparagus Adventures group to ask whether other folians who have received mail-order crowns had received dry ones that ended up doing okay. I also emailed Burpee customer service to ask whether shipping the crowns dry was standard practice. On Thursday night I dug a shallow trench in a garden bed, carefully separated the crowns, and placed them in two layers with moistened soil above and in between for temporary storage.
Photo #1: Rosa rugosa ‘Alba’
Photo #2: Rosa rugosa ‘Frau Dagmar Hastrup’
Photo #3: Planted out roses
Photo #4: What the asparagus crowns looked like upon arrival
Asparagus 'Jersey Supreme' Dormant