ROSE RAMBLER 26.2.2015

ROSE RAMBLER 26.2.2015

Hello dear rose friends and welcome to the last days of summer – so pleasant here at Clonbinane with a magnificent season when the roses flourished without environmental factors to impose on their health – aphids were kept controlled by wrens, pardalotes and ladybirds, regular applications of the organic spray management program and regular applications of quality fertilizer along with daily watering, kept our potted roses looking beautiful but now they’re happy to welcome the cooler respite of autumn.


I’ve been busy pruning the potted roses so they look their absolute best when the bus groups come for the Art & Roses Expo and we will again attend Tesselaars Garden Expo at Silvan on 18th and 19th April.

Late summer pruning will extend the flowering period right up to the beginning of winter so it’s never too late to prune!  In order to maintain great health and vigour in the bushes, be sure to distribute a good handful of Complete Organic Fertilizer around each bush – for the large climbers, you can be even more generous so they produce sturdy water-shoots to make winter pruning much, much easier.

I will cover all aspects of general rose care, composting, watering systems and more so organise for a group of friends to come here on the weekend of 11th and 12th April.  There is still time to book your group for this event – call Diana on (03) 5787 1123 for a great day out!

Rotary will provide $10 per head subsidy towards your transport for groups of 10 or more.  The tour includes, free of charge:

  • Entry, catalogue and gallery guide at the Kilmore Art Expo – Kilmore
  • Entry and Walk & Talk in the Garden with Graham at Silkies Rose Farm, Clonbinane
  • Guided short walks, history and entertainment at Hidden Valley – Wallan

Light lunches will be available at the Kilmore Art Expo Café … estimate approx. $10.00
Morning or afternoon tea/coffee and cake at Hidden valley Restaurant, Wallan $8.00

Q.  What does a boy monster do when a girl monster rolls her eyes at him?  A.  He picks them up and rolls them right back to her.


For a magnificent sight along the front boundary of your property, rather than a fence, plant a row of roses spaced between 75-90cms apart for an almost impenetrable hedge.  Here are just a few varieties which would suit:

Extremely prolific flowering, dense and very healthy dark green foliage,
exquisitely beautiful blooms which are suitable to vase 1.2 X 1.2 metres

Never without flowers, very healthy foliage,
stunningly bright colour for nine months 1.2 x 1.2 metres

For a larger space like along a driveway this magnificent rose
produces bracts of single blooms continually on an
extremely healthy shrub 1.5 x 1.5 metres

Because it is such an appropriate time for planting roses, for the next TWO WEEKS, all HEDGE ROSES will be available at the very special price of $22.00 each when you purchase four or more plants of the same variety.

Varieties included in this offer are:

KNOCKOUT              SILVER GHOST                  FABULOUS               CASANOVA
WINDRUSH               MAINAU FEUR                    BONICA                    SEAFOAM  

All the hedge roses can be pruned mechanically, are extremely low maintenance because of their magnificent health and vigour and will add a wonderful display of colour in your garden for eight-nine months each year!

We liked this so are sharing … ‘How deeply seated in the human heart is the liking for gardens and gardening.’  Alexander Smith  

Have a great week in your garden …
~ Cheers from Diana, Graham and Mooi at Clonbinane 

Rose Rambler 19th Feb 2015

ROSE RAMBLER 19.2.2015

ROSE RAMBLER 19.2.2015 …

Hello dear rose friends as I recall that this time last year, I was head down writing my book ALL ABOUT ROSES.  I was sharing that experience whilst speaking with a lovely bunch of gardeners at the Hobson’s Bay Garden Club earlier this week – lots of them purchased a signed copy of the book after I told them how readers had told me they use the book as a constant reference … it has the organic spray management recipe in it, there are very useful tips about mulch, fertilizing and watering.

ALL ABOUT ROSES is a very handy book which covers all aspects of rose growing – buy yourself a copy and also put it on your ‘gift list’ for a gardening friend!


Don’t let up on watering the garden even though there’s been a bit of rain!  Noticed that some of our ornamental trees are stressed so we are on a mission of deep soaking, seaweed solution application and layer of mulch around every single tree in the gardens.  Phil Kenyon, our Arborist was here this week removing more native trees that have succumbed since the Black Saturday fires and he told us that a tree will grow 40% more in a year when it is adequately mulched!  Roses are no different!

It was a very worthwhile project to have a professional Arborist give an assessment of all the trees in our garden – highly recommended consultancy if you love your trees and want them to continue flourishing!



If you have a special event in your garden during the coming months, you can trim your roses so that they are flowering magnificently on THE DAY … when I say ‘trim’, I want you to take stems about 15cms (6”) long and cut just above an outward facing bud.  This forces the stem to produce a very strong shoot that will be loaded with flowers within 55 – 60 days … its magic!

After you’ve trimmed, lightly fertilize the ground around the bushes, mulch if necessary and water over the organic rose management program.  If you use seaweed solution with a bit of eco-aminogro (or other fish emulsion type liquid fertilizer) every fortnight you’ll be amazed at how rapidly the bushes will produce masses of blooms in time for your event.

I turned over a compost heap yesterday and am impressed with the humus content – corn growing nearby needed watering so the compost heap has been regularly watered too.  If you are composting your putrescible waste, frequent watering will hasten that waste turning into beautiful humus which you can then apply around the roses and veggies.

ALWAYS place mulch over the humus to retain all those precious microbes!

Here’s my joke for this week … Q. What do you call an elephant in a phone box?  A. Stuck!


This amazing rose has an incredible range of colours – dark orange/chocolate brown/blue-grey … these are all my own photos of HOT COCOA which is a continually free-flowering, tall growing bush with the most glossy, healthy foliage – very highly recommended rose!

Have a great week in your rose garden – Diana, Graham & Mooi at Clonbinane

ROSE RAMBLER 13.2.2015

ROSE RAMBLER 13.2.2015

Hello dear rose friends with a timely reminder that it’s VALENTINE’S DAY tomorrow which, like I said in a radio interview yesterday, is a time to say “I LOVE YOU”!

In all the busyness of our lives, it’s so easy to forget the one who is right there, 24/7. Go pick a rose from the garden, put it in a vase beside their bed – no words necessary, the rose will speak volumes to the one you love!

Here’s Gra’s joke for this week:
Q.  What did the boy snake say to the girl snake?  A.  Give me a hiss!

Now, because we love you fellow gardeners, our rose friends, scroll down to the bottom of this email and enjoy a few beautiful pictures of roses along the way …









While you’re romancing over this weekend, here’s a joke to break-the-ice –
Q.  Why did the sea bed feel unhappy?
A.  Well, you’d be unhappy too if you had crabs on your bottom!!!
Have a beaut week in your garden and remember to present our offer to your Club or meeting group for the weekend of 11-12 April for the Kilmore Art Expo and visit to Silkies Rose Farm, Clonbinane – book more than 15 people and my Rotary Club will subsidise your travel expenses.
~ See you at Clonbinane sometime soon … Diana, Graham and Mooi



Hello dear rose friends and welcome to the last month of summer – difficult to believe it’s even been summer here in Victoria with cold southerly winds leaving temperatures hovering in the mid-20’s but that will all change soon and we will probably have a spectacular autumn.  Some rain would be good … please?


I say, why buy a bunch of roses when you can buy the whole rose bush and pick bunches of beautiful blooms for at least eight months of the year?  Our assistant, Virginia compiled this poem to inspire you when selecting a rose for the love of your life …

ROSE NAMES that match every occasion. 

Here’s some inspiration from a lovestruck romantic for Valentine’s Day!

You can share this LOVE on our Facebook site Rose Sales Online. Check us out if you haven’t already.  We know you love roses so go on “like us” and enjoy being tantalised by the many beautiful roses we supply through and make your Valentine’s Day especially memorable this year.


I confess to being a connoisseur of fine things and I do LOVE jam!
The de-seeded hips ready for the pot …

… Produced these magnificent jars of ROSE HIP JAM...

… which were delivered to the Rose Farm this week by Mary who took up Diana’s offer to harvest our hips in return for a jar of jam … Diana spent over an hour in the hot sun harvesting 1.5kgs of rose hips, packed and posted them to Buchan where Mary spent three hours de-seeding the hips after she’d ‘topped and tailed them’ – definitely a labour of love because even at minimum wage, each jar of jam must cost no less than $30 but the taste is DIVINE … thanks girls for this delicious treat!

You too could harvest hips and make this delicacy – around three established bushes of the magnificent, hip-producing RUGOSA ROSES would give you enough hips for jam-making so if you purchase these roses through February, you can have them at the very special …


You’ll not only produce rose hips but you will have the most dense, free-flowering shrubs which grow to 1.5 metres tall and wide, attract bees to your garden and offer you a wonderful screen for more delicate plants.  Rugosa roses are soooo tough and healthy – if you take up my offer, I would love another jar of jam next season …

Q. How do hens dance?  A. Cheek to cheek!  Still licking my sticky fingers before I go and check my baby ‘cheekens’ and turn the water on my compost heap …  Gra

Remember that roses are very water-wise plants … no less than 10 litres per plant, per week, delivered in the one application will ensure healthy foliage and flowering – if you are watering your rose garden, be sure to apply a sprinkling of complete organic fertilizer over the soil and the flowers will have substance, great colour and last well in a vase!

Order a GIFT ROSE bush TODAY
for guaranteed delivery on Valentine’s Day ..

See you soon at Clonbinane … Diana, Graham & Mooi