Abraham Darby David Austin Rose

In winter 2016, Kristen Rosin won her Abraham Darby rose in our online contest.  Since then, she can’t resist stopping to smell the roses!

Indeed, this is a very fragrant shrub rose, with lovely, delicate pink /apricot flowers. This rose was named to celebrate inventor Abraham Darby, who, with his son and grandson, played an important role in the industrial revolution.

Most roses bred by English plantsman David Austin are breath-taking, and many will do well in our climate, so if you’re planting roses, you should consider them. But do your research. Some are not as tolerant of our heat as they would need to be to survive here, and others have challenges that you need to be aware of. Like this ‘Abraham Darby’, which needs support in order to look its best.

A garden obelisk, with an open center for the rose to grow through, would be best. But if you’re a picky gardener like me and can’t find one to suit your aesthetic, consider arranging three or four trellises into a circling to contain your rose.

As with most roses, you’ll need to plant ‘Abraham Darby’ in bright sunlight and water it regularly, and it will benefit from protection from the heat of late afternoon blasting sun. It should be pruned regularly, but not as hard as hybrid teas and many other roses. Shrub roses prefer to be just that: shrubs.

Viewer pictures this week feature butterflies. Kyla Rodgers discovered a newly opened Gulf Fritillary chrysalis on her red yucca. Soon after, it flew off to get its first meal in her lovely garden.

And Kerstin Chapman has been raising Monarchs at home and in her classroom. This one was #42 of the Monarchs raised in her butterfly cage at home. Here’s another on a Gregg’s mistflower. She’s got lots of native wildflowers in her backyard and in May discovered many leaves with eggs and early instars of Monarch larvae.