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Wisconsin State Horticultural Society / Annual report of the Wisconsin State Horticultural Society for the year ending July 1, 1921
Vol. LI (1921)

Koch, H. F.
Outdoor rose growing,   pp. 157-168 PDF (3.0 MB)


Page 162


; -                            * .  i' 1                   '71  ~
162          FIFTY-FIRST ANNUAL REPORT OF
Probably you are familiar with the Dr. Van Fleet rose. This
particular Climber that I referred to had about five or six canes,
some fifteen or eighteen feet long. One of the best canes had
some moisture get in about half way up the length of the cane,
and I had to cut it off. The balance of that cane, instead of
flowering, began to throw out new shoots, which of course do not
flower, because climbers flower, with one or two exceptions, on
the previous year's growth. Now, if you should have that same
experience, cut it off, because you will have just so many more
flowers on the other canes that remain, if you do. There were
three other canes, as I recall it, on this rose of mine. I counted
the flowers on one of them. I stopped at 125. Every one of
them was a nice, fine looking flower, probably three or four or
five inches across when fully expanded. I do not know where
you could find anything better than that for out-of-doors. That
was the result of covering the climbers during the winter. Be-
fore that I took some of the advice of the rose books, which
said that this climber was perfectly hardy. That is not so. It
is not hardy in Wisconsin. It is hardy only to a certain extent.
I was told the other night that in Europe, where the climate is
much warmer than here, the practice is made of covering roses
with soil throughout the winter. Why should we not do it here,
where they have to stand just so much more?
Now, about uncovering.. That is something you will have to
learn. You have to uncover them just at the right time. If
you uncover them too early, they are apt to be injured by late
frosts on the new growth. If you do not uncover them early
enough the roses-especially the climbing roses-will throw out
new shoots, which make large flowers; and if the snow then gets
at them, of course they dry up. So you have to find a happy
medium, and uncover them just at the right time. I usually
find it best to uncover them a little early, and take a chance on
the weather. For that reason I leave the climbers on the ground
for a day or two, or a week, if necessary. And if by some chance
we should have a real heavy frost that might injure the plants,
or the new growth, I have some handy material there that I just
simply throw over the plants in the evening before I retire. In
that way I brought through about twenty climbers, I think, this
year, and probably six or seven perpetuals. The beauty of the
climbers is that some of them start early, and the last of them


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