The roses mark the official start of the gardening season to all of us. It is the time for scratches well earned. We weren't expecting these beauties until some time next week, so once we got over the surprise of seeing the truck driver whip out the paperwork for confirmation, "Yes, they are Roses ~ many-many-many Roses" he tells us, we set about getting prepared for the unloading process. Lucky for us, we had some extra hands yesterday in the form of Ron, who was there helping us put together all the pretty new benches you will see scattered around the nursery. With Michelle on the forklift and Kim, Lucia and I on ground, you have the crew, ready ~ willing ~ and able to unload the first of 2000 roses that will arrive over the next few weeks. We were really missing Marlea though. For the last seven years we have unloaded them together, but we were all happy knowing that she was over at the junior high school watching her daughter Madison's cross country track meet. Wasn't she going to be surprised !!!!, we all thought as the driver opened up the back of the semi to reveal the cart after cart after cart full of roses to be unloaded.
This year we made the decision to scatter our deliveries. For the last 7 years we have taken our shipments all at one time. Now that we have increased to such a huge amount of roses though it makes it very difficult to do them justice out in the rose garden, so we made the decision to take 400 every week until all the shipments have arrived. We searched for gloves for everyone, and started the process of removing these heavily scented ~ absolutely gorgeous plants. Most of you who know me, also know that I Love Roses! There is no easier flower to grow in our high desert area and I love to add a new area to my yard every year just to showcase their beauty. As this shipment started coming off the large 3 tiered metal carts I had to just stop for a moment, and savor the scents that followed them. These plants have to be the most beautiful we have ever received. Ordered last August from Weeks Roses http://www.weeksroses.com/ , they have been lovingly grown for us in anticipation of this springs arrival. They are amazing! As Lucia and I kept pointing at different ones "I need that one", " No , that one", we watched as even Ron got into the spirit of the fun "OK, I think Kathy is going to have to come down and get a few more" he announces.
We finally get them all unloaded, with assistance from our new friends "The Bonnie Boys" our vegetable growers who also happened to show up to make a delivery at the same time.....and then stood back to overlook their beauty. We watched as fellow gardeners started oohing and ahhhing over them, lucky to be the first on site and enjoy the experience with us. Huge metal carts loaded back onto the truck, we sent the driver on his way, happy with a couple slices of pizza left over from the lunch meeting we had been having with a local group of concerned citizens wanting to put on a fundraising event in the back River Garden this summer.
With the forklift parked, the gloves off, and the heavy work done for the day we stood in awe. The scents and beauty of all these flowers, tucked in so closely together to keep each other warm through last nights chill, was a moment to treasure. The rest of the day went along as only a gorgeous spring day at a garden center does. We loaded flowers and soil into peoples cars and watched as the first of the roses found their new homes. Now we wait for the next trucks to arrive. Jackson Perkins will be next www.jacksonandperkins.com , followed by Star www.starroses.com and then more Weeks, in the days to come. Feel free to look at their sites and give us a call if there is a special one on your list. If we have it, we will be happy to hold it for you until you can get in to take a peek. And don't forget, the Rose Garden is always available for that afternoon luncheon, a glass of wine with a friend on a sunny day, or just a quick respite from your busy day. The tables and chairs are there for a reason. We would love for you to please enjoy and take time to stop and smell the roses.
As I left for the evening last night I drove through the back area.....stopping the truck, I got out and looked one more time at all of them tucked in. Bending over to take one..two..three more sniffs. Then yes, I cut one large blossom to take home. Sorry, couldn't help myself. I love roses. See you soon, Susan
ps, Happy Birthday to my dear brother David. You are still older than me!