Show and tell: Rose edition.


Thursday morning found me up on Nose Hill again, where I discovered a large pocket of white wild roses.  Our two wild rose species, Rosa acicularis and Rosa woodsii, usually flower in various shades of pink, and I was delighted to come across white ones that were not simply pink blooms washed out by age or sunlight or drought.   Very pretty!

Other than a miniature rose with gorgeous pink blooms that my former landlady “lent” me about a decade ago, I don’t grow any roses at our apartment complex.  Fortunately, the mini hangs on from year to year with my minimal care – although it was touch and go this spring.  For awhile there, I actually feared it had finally been done in by the weather, but it surprised me with its perseverance.  Good thing, too, because my former landlady still lives in my building and she regularly checks on the plant (which was a gift from her granddaughter).   It’s just starting to put on flower buds now, much later than usual…but I’m just so relieved it’s still alive.  Here’s a photo from 2006, when it was fairly new to the garden. (I’m surprised to find that I don’t have any recent pics of it – I will rectify that once it blooms.  Of course, it’s not a whole lot larger now than it was back then!).



Okay, it’s your turn to brag about your roses…let’s hear about the ones that are performing best in your garden this year, the ones that you love most, the ones you’re dreaming about!  Please feel free to put up a link to your blog in the comments if you want others to check out any posts you’ve made about your roses – I know I’d certainly be delighted to see them!  

Redleaf rose.


While walking home from minding my plot at the community garden a couple of days ago, I came across this redleaf rose (Rosa rubrifolia, syn. R. glauca) growing in a nearby schoolyard. It reminded me of when we used to bring roses into the garden centre – we’d always order a few redleaf roses alongside all of the showier Mordens and Explorers and rugosas, but the customers were never thrilled about the “wild”-looking redleaf rose flowers. I tried to sell everyone on the foliage instead, but few people bit. I love them BECAUSE they look a little like our wild roses (Rosa acicularis and R. woodsii – see photos here).  If I owned a house and had the room to actually plant full size (read: large and slightly rambling) roses, a redleaf or two would definitely have a place.

What do you think of redleaf roses? Are you a fan, or are they not really your cup of tea?

Have a super-enjoyable weekend!  What are your plans – gardening or otherwise?  I’ve already done a pile of weeding this morning, but there’s still a frightening amount yet to tackle, and more rain in the forecast…. 

Wild rose petal jelly.




The recent, very vicious hailstorm we suffered here in the north part of the city a couple of evenings ago, and the heat (long overdue!) that has followed has ended the bloom period of the wild roses (Alberta’s provincial flower, Rosa acicularis), which shine in the cooler, wetter days of June.  Last weekend, before all the crazy weather hit,  I decided it was time to finally try making wild rose petal jelly.  It’s been high on the list of my canning priorities for quite awhile, but, for one reason or another during the past few summers, I’ve missed the window for gathering fresh, dark, fragrant petals.   A short early morning hike in a nearby wooded area and a quick trip to the grocery store to pick up some liquid pectin, and I was ready to go!

I used this super-simple recipe from the blog Wood Ridge Homestead in the Shenandoah Valley,  and the results were supremely delicious! (I would recommend skimming the batch before putting it into the jars to make sure your jelly is as clear as possible).

Biscuits and tea and roses, anyone?  One taste of this delightful summer treat and it will make you forget that your veggies in the community garden plot are now hail-hammered mulch!  (Well, perhaps not…but I have more seed and time enough to plant more crops – and to plan a system for covering my plants in the future).  🙂

Have you ever made rose petal jelly?  What about rose hip jam?  That’s on my list for late summer canning!