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    Roses and Butterflies in the Backyard

    Roses and Butterflies in the Backyard - August 2013

    It's been a while since I've written about the roses and butterflies in the backyard.  While I love to go cool places to photograph birds, sometimes the best opportunities come in your own backyard. As frequent readers of my blog know, I have a bit of a green thumb, and I've landscaped our garden with hummingbirds and butterflies in mind.  I used to have lots of rosebushes, as described on …Read More

    Golden Dewdrops

    Golden Dewdrops - December 2012

    My 'Gold Medal' rose is blooming like crazy right now. The big yellow flowers are very pretty and fragrant. I went outside on Sunday morning to fertilize the roses, and I immediately ran back inside to get the camera. The dew drops were too pretty not to photograph!

    Take Time to Smell the Flowers

    Take Time to Smell the Flowers - July 2012

    This is my 'Hot Cocoa' rose that has been blooming wonderfully for the past few weeks. All my roses are doing really well, and standing up to the heat better this summer than ever before (knock wood!) One of our young neighbors loves to come and smell the roses in the evenings. Her happy squeal is fun to hear! Hi, Elizabeth… :)

    After the Rain…

    After the Rain… - July 2012

    …the flowers were all covered in little water droplets. I often get asked if I ever sprinkle my flowers with drops to make dew. No, whenever I've tried that, it looks really fake. Besides, in Florida in the summertime, you don't often have to wait for the real thing!

    ‘Touch of Class’ Rose

    ‘Touch of Class’ Rose - August 2011

    The roses are suffering from the summer heat and the insects. I've stopped using insecticides since last winter. First I was worried that the insecticides would harm the wintering birds, then I realized that I was starting to see more insects in the rosebeds as a result of the decreased usage of pesticides. So here is 'Touch of Class,' insect-eaten but still pretty!

    ‘Gold Medal’ Rose

    ‘Gold Medal’ Rose - June 2011

    I've been neglecting my roses lately. First it was because I had Painted Buntings and then baby birds in the backyard. Then it was because it just got hot. But I haven't been spraying, and the rose blooms are being eaten by insects. Except for this one! This is my 'Gold Medal' rose that grows in the front yard. It's one of my favorites.


    Peace - May 2011

    Somehow the 'Peace' rose seems appropriate tonight…

    Sunset Walk

    Sunset Walk - April 2011

    I enjoyed having my zoom lens along on our walk this evening.  The light of the sunset reflected on the water of the Pebble Ridge pond, creating awesome ripples of color.  Then Rich pointed out the Wood Stork about to fly in just over the pond!  Score! The sunset was beautiful.   I zoomed all the way back to 70mm (which feels really wide after The Beast!) and aimed at the …Read More

    I’m lucky the roses didn’t all blow away!

    I’m lucky the roses didn’t all blow away! - March 2011

    Goldy and Squirt spent the day cowering together under their favorite "safe chair".  Wow were those thunderstorms strong!!  I got home expecting to see most of my rose blooms blown to the ground, but they looked ok.  This was taken before the storms…

    Springtime roses!

    Springtime roses! - March 2011

    My backyard roses are starting to bloom!   I love how they all bloom at about the same time in the spring, about six weeks after I prune them almost back to the ground.  It's amazing how fast these bushes grow.

    Waiting for the Roses to Leaf Out

    Waiting for the Roses to Leaf Out - February 2011

    I pruned my roses heavily about two weeks ago, and I'm still waiting for the bushes to leaf out. This morning I saw lots of little red growlets but no leaves yet. So I'll post a picture of the 'Minnie Pearl' rose that I took before I pruned the bush. It's hard to wait for spring rose blooms! :)

    The Great Spring 2011 Rose Pruning!

    The Great Spring 2011 Rose Pruning! - February 2011

    Every spring in mid-February I prune the roses back hard. In Florida, roses don't really get a dormant period, thanks to our nice warm weather. They don't lose their leaves like they do up north, and mine usually bloom all year round. So I force them into a short period of dormancy when I prune them. I also remove all their leaves, which seems to help with lingering blackspot and …Read More

    First Roses of the Year

    First Roses of the Year - January 2011

    My miniature rose 'Minnie Pearl' loves this cold weather.  While most of the bushes are sporting frost-bitten blooms, 'Minnie Pearl' is bursting with fresh green foliage and two tiny perfect little blooms.  I took out the wide-angle lens, the extension tubes, and the diffuser filter, and had fun with my camera. :)

    Roses in December

    Roses in December - December 2010

    I love living in a climate where I get rose blooms in December! (Hopefully they will still be blooming after it freezes tonight… :-p)

    Fall Roses

    Fall Roses - November 2010

    The backyard is very colorful these days, with all the roses blooming at the same time. That's the good thing about a good prune — it triggers a beautifully coordinated bloom cycle!


    Roses! - October 2010

    The roses are starting to bloom again after I pruned them hard at the beginning of September. It's fun to see the healthy foliage and the perfect blooms. I love the mixture of colors. The Floribundas have bloomed the fastest. The hybrid teas are starting to bloom, but they are not quite this colorful yet. Mum-mum's favorite is 'Double Delight': My 'Gemini' bush had not been blooming well at all …Read More

    ‘Memorial Day’ rose

    ‘Memorial Day’ rose - October 2010

    My roses are starting their fall bloom cycle after I pruned them heavily at the beginning of September. This one is 'Memorial Day.'

    Deja Vu?

    Deja Vu? - July 2010

    Or is it 'Deja Blu'?  Rich says that this rose isn't blue, but its shade is supposed to be somewhat unique. (Of course, if you're thinking "hey, she posted yet another rose picture!", then deja vu might be most appropriate…)

    Pretty Roses

    Pretty Roses - July 2010

    Normally in July my roses aren't looking so good.  This year, they look great!  Even my 'Pope John Paul II' rose, which tends to wilt in the harsh summer heat, is flourishing and covered in blooms. Also blooming well this month is my 'Moonstone' rose, which is totally covered in blooms right now.  Isn't it pretty?

    ‘Moonstone’ Rose

    ‘Moonstone’ Rose - July 2010

    Last night we had a nice unexpected rainfall, and I went out afterward with the camera to photograph flowers covered with raindrops.  This 'Moonstone' rose shot was my favorite.

    Gold Medal

    Gold Medal - June 2010

    My 'Gold Medal' rose bush has burst into bloom this week.  It's covered in golden roses!

    Happy 6th Anniversary

    Happy 6th Anniversary - June 2010

    Rich and I are celebrating our 6th wedding anniversary today.  Squirt wanted to celebrate by eating this rose, but I wouldn't let him.  I photographed it instead.

    Happy Memorial Day

    Happy Memorial Day - May 2010

    My 'Memorial Day' rose bloomed in honor of the day. :)

    Deja Blu

    Deja Blu - May 2010

    My 'Deja Blu' mini rose has started to put on some nice new growth, and I think this was one of the first blooms of the season. The deep magenta color is fun (and unusual for a mini rose).

    Rose Care Day

    Rose Care Day - May 2010

    Today was Rose Care Day. Rich helped me fertilize, then I sprayed. It felt really good to spend the morning outside in the yard. There were plenty of birds out and we saw/heard cardinals, mockingbirds, house finches, red-winged blackbirds, grackles, and mourning doves (the usual summer crowd). This evening I did not take my camera on our walk, and was I mad that I hadn't! We saw four bunnies by …Read More

    Backyard roses

    Backyard roses - April 2010

    The backyard roses have all burst into bloom and they are absolutely gorgeous!  The blooms are a bit late this year, due to the cold weather.  But it was worth the wait.  I went outside and took a series of pictures, then used Photoshop Elements to merge them together into a panorama.   The only thing missing is the gray cat on the grill inside the porch. :)

    First Place Roses!!

    First Place Roses!! - April 2010

    Peter and Carla are very good mail delivery people.  While we were on vacation, they delivered the American Rose magazine containing the results of this year's rose photography contest.  Guess what?  Two of the three photos that I submitted won!! My 'Nancy Reagan' rose took first place in the Hybrid Tea category: After I came down off Cloud Nine for a few minutes and read the rest of the article, …Read More

    Happy Birthday, Girls!

    Happy Birthday, Girls! - April 2010

    Happy birthday, Goldy and Missy! This purple 'Angel Face' bloomed just for you. :) It's hard to believe it's been 8 years since Dyeyo and I went shopping for birdseed and came home instead with two sweet little kittens.

    Rose-y insects

    Rose-y insects - April 2010

    This bee and mystery insect were hanging out on a rose.  I think they were dead, actually.  I wonder who stung who?

    Peace, dude

    Peace, dude - April 2010

    My 'Peace' rose has begun blooming for the spring.  It's fun to see the leaves all glossy and healthy, and the color of the rose is deeper (I guess because of the cold weather?)   The yellow and pink hues are more vibrant in April than any other time of the year.

    Bella Roma

    Bella Roma - April 2010

    The roses are slow to begin blooming, but it's worth the wait. Look at this 'Bella Roma' bloom. It's not often that I get such perfect (not eaten by insects!) roses.


    ‘Irresistible’ - March 2010

    My mini rose 'Irresistible' had the most perfect bloom today. Maybe in celebration of the first goldyfinches at Missy's Diner!! :)

    ‘Veteran’s Honor’ published in American Rose

    ‘Veteran’s Honor’ published in American Rose - March 2010

    Happy Birthday, Squirt! Squirt got ham for his birthday and I got a present, too: my 'Veteran's Honor' rose picture was printed in the current edition of American Rose magazine! Cool!

    ‘Chris Evert’ rose

    ‘Chris Evert’ rose - March 2010

    'Chris Evert' is one of the only roses blooming right now - and its blooms are bright orange and huge. :)

    Spring’s First Rose Bloom

    Spring’s First Rose Bloom - March 2010

    The first rose bloom of the season…I didn't prune 'Chris Evert' as hard as some of the other bushes, so it's blooming while the rest are just starting to flush. You can see some cold damage in the bloom, but overall, it's nice to look out and see some color!

    Goldfinches pose for camera

    Goldfinches pose for camera - February 2010

    The goldfinches were hungry today, and they didn't mind that I was outside planting flowers. Now I have a colorful yard again and some fun close-ups!

    My new flash extender is here

    My new flash extender is here - February 2010

    My flash extender for the camera came a day early! I'm excited to get it because now I'll be able to take better pictures at Circle B when it is cloudy. Since the birds in our backyard had already gone to bed when I got home today, though, I settled for testing the extender by taking a 400mm picture of the new growth on my 'Spellbound' rosebush. Look at how …Read More

    Great Rose Prune of 2010

    Great Rose Prune of 2010 - February 2010

    Aftermath of the great rose pruning of 2010. As I worked in the front, people driving by kept slowing down to gape, probably wondering why in the world I'd cut back my roses like that! But wait about six weeks and the fresh growth and healthy blooms will be totally worth it. :)


    Firefighter - January 2010

    My poor roses! They definitely didn't appreciate the cold snap. They fared better than most of our plants, though.

    It’s going to be cold tonight :(

    It’s going to be cold tonight :( - January 2010

    This 'Firefighter' rose looked beautiful yesterday with raindrops all over it. We got an inch and a half of rain - not a bad way to start the new year! Much better than the 30 degree weather that we're supposed to get tonight…the pineapples are all well tucked in under a nice warm tarp!

    A rose not eaten by thrips

    A rose not eaten by thrips - December 2009

    The recent rains have damaged some of my rose petals, but it's still fun to see 'Memorial Day' putting out blooms that are not totally eaten by thrips.

    Rainy roses

    Rainy roses - December 2009

    We got four inches of rain today. That must be more than we've gotten in the past few months combined! The roses sure are not complaining…and this 'Chris Evert' bloom was especially pretty covered in raindrops. :)

    ‘Tropical Sunset’ rose

    ‘Tropical Sunset’ rose - October 2009

    Tonight Squirt and I enjoyed our 'Tropical Sunset' (Squirt from his grill, me from behind the mower). We're having record highs in the mid-90s…when is the cool October weather going to arrive?

    Happy Mum-mum Day!

    Happy Mum-mum Day! - October 2009

    Happy Mum-mum Day! Here's a 'Peace' rose to celebrate. :) I went over to Missy's Diner and enjoyed the early morning birding hour. Check out the updated pictures.

    Roses in bloom

    Roses in bloom - October 2009

    The garden is so pleasant with so many roses in bloom!

    ‘Melody Parfumee’

    ‘Melody Parfumee’ - October 2009

    'Melody Parfumee' is so pretty covered in bloom. I love how her new flowers are dark purple and they lighten as they age.

    Fall roses

    Fall roses - October 2009

    The roses burst into bloom this week. It's so strange to look across and see straight into Carla and Peter's yard. The roses are going to enjoy the extra sunlight, though!

    ‘Bella Roma’ blooms

    ‘Bella Roma’ blooms - September 2009

    'Bella Roma' was hit really hard by the thrips this summer, and I haven't seem decent blooms on the bush since April. This one was particularly pretty.

    ‘St. Patrick’ blooms

    ‘St. Patrick’ blooms - September 2009

    'St. Patrick' is blooming great! It's the tallest in the yard and it's covered in blooms right now.

    ‘First Prize’ rose

    ‘First Prize’ rose - September 2009

    This rose is 'First Prize' in my book. I love the deep pink color.

    ‘Hot Cocoa’ rose

    ‘Hot Cocoa’ rose - September 2009

    'Hot Cocoa' is one of the more unusually colored roses in the garden. It's really pretty when it's covered in raindrops.

    ‘Dream Come True’ rose

    ‘Dream Come True’ rose - September 2009

    My 'Dream Come True' rose is one of the few that wasn't bothered a bit by the chilli thrips this summer. It grows so tall over the mailbox each bloom cycle. I think I'm going to have to move it this winter, or the poor mailman is going to stop delivering our mail because of the thorns.

    ‘Gemini’ rose

    ‘Gemini’ rose - September 2009

    More pictures of 'Gemini'…I think I have more pictures of this rose than any other rose. It blooms so often! :)

    ‘St. Patrick’ rose

    ‘St. Patrick’ rose - September 2009

    This picture of 'St. Patrick' really shows the green tints of the rose.

    ‘Double Delight’ rose

    ‘Double Delight’ rose - September 2009

    'Double Delight' has grown up nice and tall after its winter transplant. It and St. Patrick are now the two tallest bushes in the bed.'Double Delight' has grown up nice and tall after its winter transplant. It and St. Patrick are now the two tallest bushes in the bed.

    ‘Gemini’ rose

    ‘Gemini’ rose - September 2009

    'Gemini' had some beautiful blooms tonight. Squirt and I enjoyed hanging out on the porch together after work. :)

    ‘Peace’, dude!

    ‘Peace’, dude! -

    'Peace', dude! The roses are so pretty when they are sprinkled with dewdrops.

    We survived the summer thrips

    We survived the summer thrips - September 2009

    Finally! The roses are starting to bloom again and 'Dream Come True' is looking great! It's one of the few roses that wasn't bothered this summer by the crazy chilli thrips.

    ‘Gold Medal’ Butterfly

    ‘Gold Medal’ Butterfly - July 2009

    'Gold Medal' is starting to bloom again and the butterflies like the blooms almost as much as I do. :)

    ‘Deja Blu’ rose

    ‘Deja Blu’ rose - July 2009

    Finally! The first fully open blooms from 'Deja Blu'!

    ‘Double Delight’ rose

    ‘Double Delight’ rose - June 2009

    'Double Delight'! It smells great and looks beautiful too.


    Floribundas - June 2009

    Roses! My floribundas are blooming despite the heat and they look really good. :)

    ‘First Prize’ roses

    ‘First Prize’ roses - June 2009

    'First Prize' burst into bloom this week.

    ‘Crystalline’ rose

    ‘Crystalline’ rose - May 2009

    My 'Crystalline' rose has gotten huge. These blooms were striking because they didn't have much insect damage (maybe the rains keep the insects under control?)

    ‘Dream Come True’

    ‘Dream Come True’ - May 2009

    'Dream Come True' is growing huge on the mailbox. This week's set of blooms are a striking combination of red and yellow; normally they are more of a pink/cream blend. Pretty!

    ‘Pope John Paul II’ rose

    ‘Pope John Paul II’ rose - May 2009

    'Pope John Paul II' is blooming again! This rose seems to do best in spring, before our Florida summers get so hot. I've moved it to a pot to be able to move it around, and it seems like a bit of afternoon shade works well for it.

    ‘St. Patrick’ rose

    ‘St. Patrick’ rose - May 2009

    'St. Patrick' continues to bloom as it rains and rains and rains. Poor 'Crystalline' got blown over. :(

    Rose bloom

    Rose bloom - May 2009

    All the roses in the back rose bed are blooming right now and it's fun to see all the colors together. 'St. Patrick' especially is blooming quite nicely…lots of blooms with no insect damage!

    ‘April in Paris’ rose

    ‘April in Paris’ rose - May 2009

    'April in Paris' is not doing so well but did manage to put out a pretty bloom for me today.

    ‘Nancy Reagan’ rose

    ‘Nancy Reagan’ rose - May 2009

    'Nancy Reagan' is quickly becoming one of my favorite roses. Summer is arriving quickly, and our afternoon highs are in the mid-90s already. My roses miss the nice cool days of spring!

    Happy May Day

    Happy May Day - May 2009

    The rose of the day is 'Mr. Lincoln.'

    Water droplet roses

    Water droplet roses - April 2009

    Fixing sprinklers is really annoying, but at least after we get them working, my roses are primed for water droplet pictures!

    ‘Knock-Out’ tree rose

    ‘Knock-Out’ tree rose - April 2009

    The 'Knock-Out' tree rose has a nice new cane that just burst into bloom. Pretty!

    ‘Angel Face’ rose

    ‘Angel Face’ rose - April 2009

    'Angel Face' is simply covered in healthy growth and blooms about to open. It's fun to see it healthy each spring after a good pruning.

    ‘Dream Come True’ rose

    ‘Dream Come True’ rose - April 2009

    'Dream Come True' by the mailbox is just beautiful!

    ‘Honey Perfume’ rose

    ‘Honey Perfume’ rose - April 2009

    My 'Honey Perfume' rose is doing so much better this spring! It's blooming like crazy and has put out several new basal canes. I love the yellow blooms next to the bright red 'Black Cherry.'

    ‘Gold Medal’ rose

    ‘Gold Medal’ rose - April 2009

    Close-up of 'Gold Medal'.

    Front yard roses

    Front yard roses - April 2009

    The front yard roses are really putting on a show right now! The yellow one is 'Gold Medal' and the red one 'Hot Cocoa'. It's amazing how fast they've grown…two months ago they were just bare canes!

    ‘Chris Evert’ rose

    ‘Chris Evert’ rose - April 2009

    I was excited to see the first blooms of another new Spring 2009 rose - this is 'Chris Evert'. The bright orange blooms contrast nicely with the bright yellow blooms of its neighbor, 'Midas Touch'. I can't wait until it's full-grown. :)

    ‘Nancy Reagan’ rose

    ‘Nancy Reagan’ rose - April 2009

    Today I had my first bloom from my new 'Nancy Reagan' rose. This is a rose I saw at Leu Gardens last year, and I liked it so much that I had to have one of my own. The colors are amazing!

    Side yard roses

    Side yard roses - April 2009

    The roses on the side are all blooming and they are gorgeous!! It's too bad the wind is blowing petals off as quickly as they open…but hey, we'll take the rain.

    New mini rose blooms

    New mini rose blooms - April 2009

    My new minis have all bloomed! My new minis have all bloomed!

    House finches

    House finches - March 2009

    As Mum-mum put it, there are sure a lot of birdie hormones flying around the yard at this time of year! It's fun to see birds pair off, though. This House Finch pair posed for me in the oak tree. Although I suspect Peter wishes that our young Mr. Cardinal had not found a mate…he spends his day fighting with his reflection in Peter's window! I guess that's why we …Read More

    ‘Mr. Lincoln’ rose

    ‘Mr. Lincoln’ rose - March 2009

    The first of my new bareroot roses bloomed this morning. 'Mr. Lincoln' is gorgeous!

    ‘Peace’ in bloom

    ‘Peace’ in bloom - March 2009

    All the roses are covered in buds, and in about a week I suspect the backyard is going to be full of color. 'Peace' started a few days early. The bright yellow and pink blended flowers are huge and look beautiful in the morning sun!

    ‘Bee’s Knees’ rose

    ‘Bee’s Knees’ rose - March 2009

    It's hard to believe that 'Bee's Knees' was just a twig a few weeks ago. I worried that I had pruned it too harshly, but no, now it's almost as big as the rest of my minis.

    ‘Double Delight’ rose

    ‘Double Delight’ rose - March 2009

    The first of my recently transplanted hybrid teas is now blooming! This is 'Double Delight.'

    ‘Bella Roma’ rose

    ‘Bella Roma’ rose - March 2009

    It's the first 'Bella Roma' bloom that the insects didn't completely destroy! I like springtime. :) Today Rich and I went to meet little Mathias Evan, the son of our friends Saidel and Jamie. He's absolutely adorable!!

    ‘First Prize’

    ‘First Prize’ - March 2009

    This one wins 'First Prize'!