Choosing The Right Rose For You

Shrub Rose Westerland

Shrub Rose Westerland

Boy, I bet you never dreamed there was such a variety of roses. You still look a little overwhelmed from all that we covered from the last chapter. With such an array, how do you decide which rose is right for you?

Allow me to help a little with that. First, you’re probably tempted, as I was in the beginning years of my rose-growing days, to just run down to your local nursery and buy the species of rose that you feel is the most beautiful. I can’t blame you there.

But you should place more thought than that into it. After all, you do want to get the absolute best results you possibly can from both your investment in money and the future investment you’re making in time. You know, the tending to the flower, the watering, the fertilizing, and the talking to!

Even though your heart is saying run out and buy the first rose you see, your mind is saying, “Let’s do a little research.” Listen to your mind on this one.

Peace Rose

And let’s start with just a few traits you should look for when you’re purchasing a rose.

Think about these questions before you buy your plant:

1. For what purpose do I want the rose?

By this question, I mean where in your garden are you planning on putting it. Will it be in a container? Will it be part of a flower bed or border? Or perhaps you’re thinking more of creating a hedge with the rose or having it stand as an arbor.

Good Choice

2. Am I going to cut the flowers for arrangements?

3. How much space can I realistically devote to the flower?

If you have a smaller garden, then you’ll be considering purchasing what’s called “compact” roses. This will keep the roses in an approximate scale with all your other plants.

If your garden is larger, than, of course, you want the larger varieties of roses.


4. What colors would I like?

Are you searching for bright colors in your plants, like the reds, the oranges, the golds or even the stripes? Instead of bright, you may opt for the flowers in the pastel range.

5. How important is the fragrance of the rose to me?

rose fragrance

For many people, the fragrant scent of the rose is important. For others, they cherish the look. Would you be disappointed realistically speaking, if the rose you chose didn’t have a strong, aromatic scent?

6. Realistically, how much time am I willing to invest in the maintenance of this flower?

You may have the time and the energy to get intimately involved with your rose plants. If that’s the case, hybrid tea roses would be a good choice. This particular type of rose requires careful attention. It’s prone to disease and needs pruning.

But don’t give up on roses if you don’t’ have the time or energy for the “fussier” plants. Instead, search out a few that are easier to tend to. Believe me, they’re out there.

7. What are the growing conditions like in my yard?

Objectively evaluate your climate. In fact, when asking this question, you can turn to the USDA Plant hardiness Zone Map. This will help you make your decision about the type of rose that will thrive in your climate.

Up Close and Personal.

While a picture may be worth a thousand words, you certainly don’t want to choose your rose through leaving through photos on the internet or in books. I really don’t care how great of quality those photos may be, you’ll want to get up close and personal with the roses before you make your final choice. After all, when was the last time you “smelled a picture”?

Rose displays are available for the public in many metropolitan and botanical parks. And the advantage here is that the roses themselves are usually meticulously identified. Once you’ve spotted a rose that peaks your interest, you can jot the name of it down and see what kind of attention it needs. This way you can see if this rose actually suits the climate of your area and more specifically the needs of your particular yard and garden.

Sweet Potatoes Satisfy Sweets and Reduce Stress

Sweet Potatoes

Carbs and sweets can cause powerful urges and wreak havoc with your system. The two cravings are what you’re bound to reach for when you’re under a lot of stress, but the few moments of satisfaction aren’t worth the harm they can do to your body and your stress level.

Sweet potatoes are a great way to reduce the urge for carbs and sweets while consuming a well-known superfood packed with vitamins such as beta-carotene and fiber. They can help your body process carbs slowly and steadily without causing mood swings and cravings.

As a snack, you can’t beat the stress-reducing power of sweet potatoes. Rather than a short rush of sugar (then, the crash that’s sure to occur), sweet potatoes treat your body to an array of nutrients that have the power to benefit your body rather than harm it.

Sweet potatoes also make you feel full for a longer period of time, reducing the need to binge or eat foods you don’t need or really want. Among the benefits of sweet potatoes is their high vitamin content.

Vitamin A (beta-carotene), manganese, pantothenic acid, Vitamin C, copper and Vitamin B6 are all contained in sweet potatoes. They’re also a great source for dietary fiber, niacin, potassium, Vitamin B1 and B2 and phosphorus.

Sweet potatoes are inexpensive, easy to cook and eat and make a delicious side dish or meal. The health benefits are numerous and include many for stress relief. Vitamin D can help those who may not receive adequate sunlight.

Vitamin D is a hormone and a vitamin and can keep SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder) at bay. SAD often affects those who don’t get enough sunlight and can cause our energy levels and moods to suffer. It also benefits the thyroid gland – which in turn, affects our weight and moods.

Iron is another component found in sweet potatoes. Iron provides energy and stimulates the production of white and red blood cells, helping us resist the effects of stress on the body.

Magnesium is also necessary for our bodies and helps relieve stress by providing us with magnesium – a natural anti-stress and relaxation mineral. As important as it is to our overall well-being, it’s estimated that about 80% of America’s population is magnesium deficient.

sweet potato chips

Image by Bernadette Wurzinger from Pixabay

Sweet potatoes are also versatile. You can bake, slice and grill, puree, steam or roast them or even add them to your leafy green salads and soups. Pureed, they can be an excellent addition to smoothies.

FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT SWEET POTATOES, GO HERE

If Stress Has You Down and Depressed

Dogs are depressedIf Stress Has You Down and Depressed

Depression strikes nearly all of us at one time or another. It could be clinical depression, which is caused by our mental health and possible physical reasons – or situational depression caused by traumatic events or other negative occurrences in our lives.

It’s one of the most common illnesses striking the general population today and may cause irritability, fatigue, lack of motivation or purpose in life and extreme sadness, crying and even aches and pains.

Clinical depression sometimes requires seeking help from a counselor or physician and taking medications, but you may get relief by simply changing your diet a bit to include the right foods with elements that reduce and obliterate feelings of depression.

Processed meals, junk food, but sweetjunk foods and foods high in refined sugar and carbs may contribute to the causes of depression in your life. By eating these types of foods, you’re only adding to the physical and mental problems causing the situation.

Recent studies report that a diet high in vegetables and fruits caused fewer symptoms of depression and had a cumulative effect of providing more antioxidants to the body. Antioxidants are essential to flushing out toxins and other elements adding to a sluggish immune system – and depression.

Folic acid may also reduce the risk of depression and other ailments such as insomnia and fatigue. Dark green, leafy vegetables contain folic acid as do an array of colorful vegetables such as those having deep colors.

Beets, peppers, melons, and tomatoes contain valuable nutrients that literally make us happy – boosting the brain’s production of serotonin – the happy chemical. All of the above vegetables can be grown easily in your home garden.

Whether you have an outdoor space or use another method of gardening such as containers on a small patio space or hydroponic gardening which can be done indoors, you can grow a garden for health that beats stress.

A common cause of depression is free radicals – highly damaging molecules produced by the body and are harmful to cells, cause aging and other body and mind dysfunctions.

Helpful berries

Vitamins C and E and beta-carotene (an antioxidant) reduce the effects of free radicals on your system and render them unable to destroy your body or your happiness. Blueberries, peppers, potatoes, tomatoes, and strawberries are great sources of Vitamin C and can be grown handily in your garden space.

Beta-carotene sources can be grown by planting carrots, spinach, collards, cantaloupe, and sweet potatoes. Planning and planting your own garden is one way to bring much-needed exercise into your life – and exercise boosts the production of serotonin which, in turn, lifts your mood and your health.

Look to your garden to combat bouts of depression. Working in the garden gets you out into the sunshine (a good source of Vitamin D) and the vegetation you grow and harvest will help transform a dark, gloomy mood into a happy day.