This winter, I will not lose these urns of life.
This winter, I will not forget where I stored these pomes.
This winter, I will not place these seeds where Mrs. ProfessorRoush might displace them.
This winter, I will not forget to stratify the seeds.
This winter, I will not overlook the chance to grow a new rose.
This spring, I will remember to plant these children in sterile soil.
This spring, I will scarify the seed coat to encourage germination.
This spring, I will not overwater the seedlings.
This spring, I will keep the mildew at bay.
This spring, I will keep the fragile growing babes in full, bright sun.
I collected these hips today, on probably the last 70 degree day of the year. In the past, I've grown a rose seedling or two, but more than once I have lost the hips over the winter or seen them dry to death. Not this year. I'm going to do everything by the book, as closely as I can. We have already had several light freezes at night and I don't trust the deep freezes forecast in the coming week so it was time to bring them in for protection and start their journey into the future.
The multi-colored, multi-shaped hips of the top picture are collected from a variety of Rugosa roses; 'Fru Dagmar Hastrup', 'Foxi Pavement', 'Purple Pavement', 'Snow Pavement', 'Charles Albanel' and 'Blanc Double de Coubert', as well as a few hips from 'Applejack', 'Survivor', and 'George Vancouver'. Yes, to a rose purist, they are all mixed up and worthless and I will never know the true parentage of anything that grows from them. In my defense, they were all open-pollinated as well, so even if I kept them separate, I would know only half the story. And I really don't care what their lineage is; I'm looking for health, beauty, and vitality in these offspring, not for any specific crossing. The Rugosa genes should be enough.
The lighter, more orange hips of the second picture are from one rose; Canadian rose 'Morden Sunrise'. Well, okay, there are two hips from 'Heritage' that I will take care to keep separate. 'Morden Sunrise' looks to be a great female parent based on her hips, bursting with seed and plentiful. I don't know if she'll be self-pollinated or whether the bees did their jobs, but, regardless, I did want to see if any seedlings from these hips will survive and carry the colors of the sunrise down another generation.
Next year, I will grow roses. New roses. My roses.