Everything's Coming Up Roses--and a Few Bees

May 3, 2012

Everything's Coming Up Roses--and a Few Bees

May 3, 2012

Honey bees aren't that much into roses. Wild roses, yes. Cultivated roses, not so much. Given a choice, they'll take the lavenders, mints and salvia (sage) over the roses any time.

Occasionally, however, we see honey bees foraging on roses in the UC Davis Arboretum's Storer Garden on Garrod Drive, or in the Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven on Bee Biology Road.

Ah, roses! One of life's simple pleasures. And what would Mother's Day be without them?

Speaking of roses, this weekend on the UC Davis campus is all about roses.  The California Center for Urban Horticulture (CCUH) and Foundation Plant Services are teaming to present their fifth annual Rose Day on Saturday, May 5 from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Melissa "Missy" Gable, program manager of CCHU, says the May 5th event, themed "Your Sustainable Backyard: Roses," will include talks and demonstrations; a tour of the Storer Garden on Garrod Drive; a tour of the Foundation Plant Services' eight-acre rose field on Hopkins Road; and a tour of the All-American Rose Selection test garden on Hopkins Road. And it's all for $45.  (See registration or contact Missy (Borel) Gable at mjborel@ucdavis.edu for more information.)

Workshop participants--as well as the general public--can not only smell the roses but buy them from 2:30 to 5:30 p.m., Saturday, May 5 at the Foundation Plant Services site at 454 Hopkins Road.  Rose plants are $25 each, five or more for $22, and 10 or more for $18--cash and checks only. 

Then on Sunday, May 6, the public rose sales will continue from noon to 5 p.m. at the Foundation Plant Services site. Think hybrid teas, grandifloras, climbers and landscape roses. "Four-inch Cinco de Mayo rose plants will be given out while supplies last," Gable said.

Sale proceeds will benefit horticulture education at UC Davis--a good cause.

And maybe, just maybe, you might see a few bees on the roses. You won't be charged extra!

(Directions: The Foundation Plant Services, 455 Hopkins Road, is located on the corner  of Hopkins and Straloch, about a mile west of the UC Davis central campus. Take Hutchinson west of 113, turn right toward the new West Village apartments at the first traffic circle, then west again onto Hutchinson at the second traffic circle. Take a left on Hopkins at the second line of olive trees. Note: While you're in the area, you might want to stop by and see the half-acre Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven, a bee friendly demonstration garden located next to the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility on Bee Biology Road, off Hopkins Road. It's open from dawn to dusk every day; admission is free.)