The second flush

secondflushwallThis will teach me to be a better gardener.

Meet the original rose in the courtyard. An unloved and unremarkable plant.

I toyed with the idea of cutting it out ten years ago. It was the only plant in the soil between the two houses. And it was a straggler.

All my other show off roses – the David Austin Gertrude Jekylls – were in large planters. That was because I suspect there is something unpleasant deep down in the soil.  Nothing thrives.

And this one certainly doesn’t.  A few months ago I was lingering nearby with the loppers considering it a kindness to just give it the chop.  The planters have all gone down to the potager and this small rose looks forlorn on its own. It flowers. Once. And then I stare at blackspot and sickly sticks until about September when the second flush appears.

secondflushverticalBut this year I did something novel. I actually took a bit of care. I mulched the base with proper home made compost. I dropped a few organic chicken pellets into the soil. I, gasp, watered it.

And just two weeks after the first flush it is flowering again. Fancy!

It is still spindly and forlorn. But at least it has flowers. And a future.