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Probably the prettiest part of the Compost Garden is what peeks over the fence from Sick Bay!  Cottage Rose, a David Austin rose, is a good candidate for a rose near the gate.  She seems content to stay slim and not attack those coming and going.  I like Cottage Rose (I have two), but she is a floppy girl.  If you want to grow her, plan on giving her a fence, trellis, or pillar to prop her up.  As it is, even with the fence, the poor girl got all tangled and top heavy in the strong winds we had last week.  I actually took a chair out to her and piled her canes onto it until I have time to untangle her and chop her back.  I'll wait until her heavy blooming is done.  Rose growing must be so simple in places without 70 mph winds.

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The Compost Garden is on the opposite side of the shed from the Gargoyle Garden.  It often a mess in transit.  We store supplies for projects (stones and wood), maintain our compost bins, and use it as a temporary spot for yard detritus.

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As you can see, it's not pretty!  By the way, that pile of rubbish is gone now.  Most of it was from our latest project, which was tearing up the old limestone path we installed several years ago.  We'd never done such a thing, and we had plenty of limestone left in the yard from the previous owners, so we had fashioned ourselves a pretty little path from the garden gate to the street.  Unfortunately, limestone is brittle, and it began to break in bits.  It became treacherous to walk upon, so we hired the son of a friend to dig up the stones.

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Before I had compost bins, I used to use the entire area as a compost pile.  Frankly, I liked it far better than the containers.  It was easier to aerate and move around.  However, when we had the floods of 2007, I didn't find having potato peels and dryer lint all over the yard charming.  This area behind the bins was a result of my composting.  It's not very easy to compost iris bulbs!  I have odd irises popped up here and there from that experiment.  What hearty things those bulbs are!IMG 4839 - Copy

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There's my second Cottage Rose peeking over to say "hello" to the irises.  The rose with the large white flowers is Sally Holmes.  She would eat that fence if I let her.  I had to rescue Cottage Rose from her this year.  Sally is a big girl!

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I have the hardest time photographing red.  I was trying different setting with my camera, and this came out too orange.  Fourth of July is a mad profusion of reds, pinks, and whites.  I like her name--she is very much like a sky full of fireworks.  I acquired Fourth of July when I was going through my striped phase.  Across the path from Fourth of July is her demure, sophisticated counterpart, Scentimental, also a striped rose.  I used to have another striped rose, Rockin' Robin, in my little striped triangle, but it never pleased me after years of waiting, so it had to go.  I'm patient but brutal.  Behave or begone!

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Each bloom on Fourth of July is different.  I've seen some that were primarily white; others mostly red.

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I was once showing a friend through my garden, and she floored me when she asked, "But where are your roses?"  She knew I loved roses, but she didn't recognize all the flowers I had been showing her were roses!

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So many people think of the florist's hybrid tea when they think of roses.

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I was much the same way when I first began growing roses.  I had a garden full of hybrid teas that needed fussing and spraying.  As they would die off, I'd replace them with better, heartier roses.  The hybrid tea form is beautiful with the high center and the many petals, but I find as much satisfaction and beauty in the many other forms of roses.

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Next project:  new path with paving stones that are more durable than limestone!
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