Game of Thorns

When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die.”

In my garden and in Westeros, vitality is king. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have the time or patience to babysit fussy plants. One thing I adore about roses is that you cut off the weakest canes to let the strongest ones thrive. I tirelessly researched which roses were the most likely to thrive in my yard and I find it terribly exciting to see which roses will be among the first to open.

In honor of the return of one of my favorite TV shows, Game of Thrones, I thought I’d give you the rose update. Every rose you see featured here opened within the past seven days, as if they were as excited about GOT returning as I am! The past two years, Wild Blue Yonder (which is in fact a purple rose, not blue) won the race. It’s one of the six roses in my front yard and still has yet to open. This year, much to my surprise, my grandiflora Cherry Parfait was the first to open, a bit of a dark horse!Cherry Parfait Rose | The Rose TableOne thing I love about Cherry Parfait is that when it opens, it’s largely white with a dusting of pink around the edges. The longer the rose is open, the pinker the edges become. By the time the rose is spent, it’s nearly entirely pink.  Here is the same bloom just one day later:Cherry Parfait Rose | The Rose Table  And just a few days later it’s this glorious bleeding rose:

My sweet little mini rose Cinderella opened next. I had this one shipped to me from a nursery in east Texas. It’s in my fairy tale rose corner, situated right next to Disneyland in front of my butterfly bench. The roses are smaller than my fingertips!

Golden Celebration, an English rose by David Austin, opened next, looking absolutely radiant. There’s something so special about English roses. The blooms are more cup-like than the classic American hybrid tea roses.

Next was Sungold, a Jackson & Perkins find next to my butterfly bench. I love the ruffled shape of the blooms!

Sungold is a ridiculously elegant rose in color and shape. Have you ever seen such a ruffled rose before? The tips are kissed with a bit of red, giving it more of an orange than yellow hue.

Sungold two days later:

Next to bloom were my Knockout Roses and boy did they ever! The thing about knockout roses is that there’s never a single bloom open. When they’re blooming, they go all out. I respect that.

Moondance on the other hand is a stately hybrid tea rose, focusing its efforts on each individual long-stemmed bloom. I must remember to photograph this rose at night. Moondance blooms practically glow in the dark!

There were two days between these photos. Moondance opens slowly and to be honest, I adore the anticipation.

The next roses are honorable mentions. They were late to the party but no less fun to watch, much like Margery Tyrell and Oberyn Martell.

About to bloom: 

It’s no secret that I love all things Disney. In fact, my Twitter bio says “Disney enthusiast.” It should be no surprise then that I own the official rose of Disneyland, which can be seen all over the theme park in Southern California. In my yard, this miniature rose of course grows in my fairytale corner, between Dream Come True and Cinderella.

Mister Lincoln sits behind Sungold next to my butterfly bench. I rather liked the poetry of having Mister Lincoln and Queen Elizabeth separated only by Golden Celebration. I don’t have plaques for my roses (I should get on that) so only I (and now you!) know that fact, but it still makes me incredibly happy.

I shouldn’t play favorites with roses (speaking of favorites, I’m still mourning Khal Drogo) but Lion’s Fairytale is definitely up there. A creamy, peachy white, Lion’s Fairytale has the loveliest shape. Each petal comes to a point. I wish it had opened in time for this post so I could show you! This Kordes rose was originally bred in Germany and I swear, our Texas winters don’t even register. My Lion’s Fairytale has stayed green the last two winters! It also was the ONLY rose in my backyard to resist black spot last year. If winter is coming, this is the rose you want. That’s why if I had to pick a winner for the Game of Thorns, that honor would go to Lion’s Fairytale.

There you have it, all of the roses that have bloomed thus far! Stay tuned for the next round of Game of Thorns.

Happy gardening (and watching!),
The Rose Table
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P.S. Season five of Game of Thrones premieres tonight on HBO at 9/8 CST.

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