A Long Hot Summer

Wow! What a roller coaster of a ride this summer has been. With the loss of about a dozen or so roses due to the #PolarVortex, we have now replaced all with new varieties. Mainly David Austin varieties.  It was hard to see the old roses go, but have had a great time selecting new ones and watching some of those new roses come to life in the garden.

'Scentimental' floribunda

‘Scentimental’ floribunda

In July, I lost a dear friend and work colleague. We worked daily together for several years and her loss was a blow to me not only professionally, but personally as well. I was asked to assume her duties until a replacement could be recruited. This was one way I could honor someone who spent her entire 30+ year career in the pursuit of excellence. To be able to come along side her team and guide them using the foundation she prepared is something I have taken great pride in.  In doing so, this blog has not had the attention it deserves.
I still walk my garden every single day and take photos. Those of you who follow me on Facebook & Instagram have seen some of the spectacular blooms we have seen.

Some of the new David Austin Roses we've added this year:  Darcy Bussell, Gentle Hermione, Crown Princess Margareta,  Munstead Wood and more....

Some of the new David Austin Roses we’ve added this year:
Darcy Bussell, Gentle Hermione, Crown Princess Margareta, Munstead Wood and more….

A replacement was named for my friend last week. Cooler temps and lower humidity has returned to the garden and my thoughts once again turn to the garden. Despite all the summers events, we must stay focused on what really matters in life. People…. Go hug someone you love and stay tuned….. The best is yet to come.


About Chris VanCleave - America's Favorite Rose Gardener

Christopher R. VanCleave – America’s Favorite Rose Gardener Nicknamed "The Redneck Rosarian”, Chris VanCleave is passionate about gardening and growing roses. He is an active member of the Birmingham chapter of the American Rose Society, serving two terms as President. In 2007, he created the Rose Chat Podcast which has reached over a half a million listeners with news and information on growing on growing the world’s most beloved flower, the rose. He was a contributor to the 2015 Southern Living Gardening Book, has appeared on P. Allen Smith’s Garden Home television show and was featured in the June 2015 issue of Southern Living Magazine. Locally, Chris serves as Chairman of the Helena Alabama Beautification Board where he has spearheaded efforts to create a sustainable landscape in one of the top one hundred places to live in the United States. His writing is seen at About.com and on his popular website; RedneckRosarian.com, where he chronicles his gardening adventures and explores an intrinsic mix of life, faith and gardening. An agent of change with over 20 years’ experience in process innovation, Mr. VanCleave is leading the charge to reinvigorate horticultural societies and helping them to reach their full potential in the social media age.
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14 Responses to A Long Hot Summer

  1. Gloria Ballard says:

    So sorry for the loss of your friend. I hope you find comfort and healing in your garden.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So sorry for your loss and glad you could cherish her memory by continuing her work. May your roses continue to bring you joy.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: A Long Hot Summer | Annie Haven | Haven Brand |...

  4. Welcome back Chris. Your garden welcomes you back as well.
    For the past year, I am supporting a dear friend who is battling a second round of cancer, I fear she will not beat ~ I feel your pain. I will give my friend a long hug today, as I take her to an appointment.
    My summer has been a real test in many ways, especially without rain. I eagerly await lower humidity, so I can wrap up weeks of exterior painting projects.
    Without health, we can achieve little, so I am grateful indeed. Take care, xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your kind words. Thoughts and prayers for your friend as she battles this second round of cancer. You have been busy! I have lurked quietly on your blog and have followed your adventures…… Hope to be back in the mix now…. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Without good health, everything else suffers. I’ve noticed your absence and wondered if life had gotten too busy for you. Instead you were doing something important and worthwhile. Of course, I would expect nothing less from someone like you! Your character shines through in your words, Chris.

    Liked by 1 person

    • How very kind of you to post such words. I am glad to be back in the midst of friends and those who share a mutual interest in our gardens. I have loved seeing your projects come to fruition this summer.


  6. Emily Volavka says:

    My sympathy to you in the loss of your friend. Your work place was indeed lucky that you stepped up during a difficult period for all. I missed your garden walks and am grateful that you are back to share your beautiful garden with us.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. elenawill says:

    Sorry to hear about the loss of your friend. I noticed that Mrs.RoseDiva filled in with photos and just thought you were super busy. Thank you and Teresa for keeping RoseChat Radio going. I truly enjoy your guests and the time you put in to do it.


  8. Enjoy your extra time in your beautiful garden! 🌹


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