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Love roses? It's time to rate some newcomers

Participate in national Roses in Review survey

Celestial Night, a popular new floribunda rose, is a prolific bloomer. It's on the Roses in Review list this year.

Celestial Night, a popular new floribunda rose, is a prolific bloomer. It's on the Roses in Review list this year.

Courtesy Spring Hill Nurseries

Tried any new roses lately? How do you like those varieties? Would you recommend them to another gardener?
Here’s your chance to do just that in one of the nation’s longest-running citizen science projects.

The American Rose Society invites gardeners coast to coast to take part in Roses in Review, a national survey to rate newly introduced rose varieties.

This is the 97th time that rose growers have participated in Roses in Review, one of the oldest active volunteer gardener efforts of its kind. The results are compiled into the ratings used in the ARS handbook and for rose recommendations. That means your observations will help rose growers choose what to plant in their own gardens for generations to come.

Anyone who grows roses can participate. Not all roses are rated every year – there are too many! (Thousands of roses have ratings.) Instead, the roses on the review list are mostly new varieties or ones that had not yet been rated but are becoming known to a wider audience. Most first hit nurseries in 2018 or later.

Among the roses on this year’s review list: Celestial Night, a purple floribunda with very full blooms (and lots of them).

Deadline is 5 p.m. Sept. 26. The survey is conducted online at That’s also where you’ll find the list of candidates.


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Dig In: Garden Checklist

For week of March 19:

Spring will start a bit soggy, but there’s still plenty to do between showers:

* Fertilize roses, annual flowers and berries as spring growth begins to appear.

* Watch out for aphids. Wash off plants with strong blast from the hose.

* Pull weeds now! Don’t let them get started. Take a hoe and whack them as soon as they sprout.

* Prepare summer vegetable beds. Spade in compost and other amendments.

* Prune and fertilize spring-flowering shrubs after bloom.

* Feed camellias at the end of their bloom cycle. Pick up browned and fallen flowers to fight blossom blight.

* Feed citrus trees as they start to blossom.

* Cut back and fertilize perennial herbs to encourage new growth.

* Seed and renovate the lawn (if you still have one). Feed cool-season grasses such as bent, blue, rye and fescue with a slow-release fertilizer. Check the irrigation system and perform maintenance. Make sure sprinkler heads are turned toward the lawn, not the sidewalk.

* In the vegetable garden, transplant lettuce and kale.

* Seed chard and beets directly into the ground.

* Plant summer bulbs, including gladiolus, tuberous begonias and callas. Also plant dahlia tubers.

* Shop for perennials. Many varieties are available in local nurseries and at plant events. They can be transplanted now while the weather remains relatively cool.

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