What's Not to Love About Roses?

May 1, 2013

What's Not to Love About Roses?

May 1, 2013

I beg your pardon
I never promised you a rose garden
Along with the sunshine
There's gotta be a little rain sometime...

So began Joe South in his hit song, "I Never Promised You a Rose Garden," popularized by country singer Lynn Anderson in 1970.

That was Joe South's rose garden. What UC Davis has is an eight-acre field of roses, and you're invited to celebrate "Roses: the "Eyeconic Weekend" on Saturday and Sunday, May 4-5. It's a free event, with free training/informational sessions. The best part, however, is you can tour the rose field and  select and buy a wide variety of container roses for your own garden.

The California Center for Urban Horticulture (CCUH), part of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at UC Davis, sponsors this annual fundraiser.

The rose sale takes place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both Saturday, May 4 and Sunday, May 5 at Foundation Plant Services, 455 Hopkins Road, west of the central campus. 

Rose field tours will be given from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. on both days. Free mini floribunda roses will be handed out to the first 250 attendees, says CCUH executive director Dave Fujino.

Fujino invites the public to attend the free informational sessions, offered both days at the same site. No registration is required.

The agenda for Saturday, May 4 for the free informational sessions:

  • 11 a.m. to noon: New rose varieties
  • 1 to 2 p.m., Roses 101 (placement, planting and feeding)
  • 2 to 4 p.m., Pruning
  • 3 to 4 p.m.: Pest management

The agenda for Sunday, May 5 for the free informational sessions:

  • 11 a.m. to noon: New rose varieties
  • 1 to 2 p.m.: Roses 101 (placement, planting and feeding)
  • 2 to 4 p.m.: Pruning
  • 3 to 4 p.m.: Disease Identification (Bring your diseased specimens in a sealed baggie)

These "Rose Days" are what folks look forward to every year. Want to check out the beauty and fragrance? Want to learn how to prune roses? Want to ask a question about a pest or a beneficial insect? This is the place. 

A rose catalog is online to aid you in your choices. There you'll see photos of such roses as Yabba Dabba Doo, Big Momma, Tiddly Winks, Wild Blue Yonder, McCartney Rose, Passionate Kisses, and Oh My!

Also available for sale ($10) will be the UC ANR book on "Healthy Roses."

No, this isn't Joe South's rose garden. This is the UC Davis eight-acre field of roses.