It's high rose season here in Portland, and I actually experienced an entire Rose Festival Parade today. Though it was from the dry perch of a downtown parking garage: that is the way to do it. Screw the tape and camping out. Pay $7 for a parking spot in a garage and have a perfectly situated set up, out of the elements, to take in the parade. It was actually fun.
But for the real rose experience, we trekked down to St. Paul the other day for a visit to one of my favorite places in Oregon, Heirloom Roses. Imagine eons of roses, dripping from every corner, sprinkling petals at your feet. All different kinds, all differently scented. I bet I stuck my nose in hundreds of roses that day. And it took everything in me to not buy one. We have nine heirloom roses in our garden now, ten if you count the suckers coming up from the area where we dug out a rose last year. And oh how I love them. Now if you're thinking these are the fussy roses that get blackspot and rust and have to be coddled, you're wrong. Those are hybrid teas. I'm talking about the old fashioned heirloom roses, like moss roses, grandifloras, ramblers, climbers, albas. These are decadent flowers that smell like the rose water perfume grandmas wear. Some smell like citrus, or musk. Before I show you photos from our trip, here's what the roses cut from our garden look like...
And here's what they look like growing at Heirloom Roses...
I know you think this one is called Candycane, but it's not.
And because I am not capable of stifling my sarcasm, I give you this. I think she had a little too much to drink.
For some reason I don't think this is the best name for this plant.
And the following photo? Well, I couldn't help myself. You go, girls! (I'm tempted to say this is a photo of me and my parents but then I'm afraid some of you might actually believe it.)
Okay, I think that's enough photos to keep your browsers loading for awhile. Happy Rose Festival to my fellow Oregonians, and to all who love a little romantic flower in their lives.