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Thoughts & Musings by Sandra Visnapuu

What's in a Name?

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As much as I’m saddened to see our tulips cross over to the other side, I’m delighted that the month of June causes two of my favorites to bloom - Roses and Peonies.

I plant all three varieties in the same bed. In Fall, tulips are over planted and every spring I discard those in decline after blooming. I then cut the long stems and let the green leaves fade under the umbrella of fresh greenery from the peonies and the roses.

I find it rather distracting to see peonies staked, so instead I intertwine them with the roses letting the heavy stiff rose branches support the ponderous blooms of peony.After the peonies finish blooming prune and shape them doubling up on the lushness in the rose beds. 

Roses, more than any other plant seem to bring romance, conjuring a mystical experience as you walk amongst them. Perhaps it’s the intrigue of the names chosen by its growers that we purchase them. 

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Admittedly, I am predisposed to English Rose Breeders - I have traveled extensively throughout the British Isles, France and Europe. Often the very names attached to their roses conjure up history and nostalgia. Their propensity to large blowsy, repeat blooming, healthy roses, with intoxicating fragrance are simply wooing. The following picture was taken at Abbey House, which I frequent.

Image courtesy of  Abbey House

Even though I show favoritism I mix new with old, hybrid teas with antique and sometimes I just buy what I cannot walk away without.

My beautiful Welsh Springer, Gertrude, no longer under the table, still walks the garden with me in spirit with the rose she was named after, Gertrude Jekyll.

As well my shy, demure wire-haired Dachshund, Violette is a picture of humor, as she appears to tunnel her way through the roses beds. Deservedly the antique Hybrid Perpetual rose, Reine de Violettes and the Downton Abbey’s floribunda rose, Violet’s Pride, had to be placed for her enjoyment.

Lastly, beauty and sentimentally is paramount so as a native Californian, I had to walk out with the new Hybrid Tea rose, Hotel California.

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On Friday, June 7th between 5-7pm I will be outside L’Armoire and Berkshire Hathaway supporting the New Canaan Summer of Love Kick off Party. This is to celebrate Woodstock’s 50th Anniversary so I will be wearing flowers in my hair. Join us for wine, bites to eat and live music! http://www.larmoirenewcanaan.com/events/new-canaan-summer-of-love

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