In December the Heritage Rose Foundation offered its assistance to the new custodians of my rose collection, the Friends of Vintage Roses. This forming non-profit has set as its goal to preserve this collection of roses so that others, many years from now, may continue to experience the beauty, history and art of the old roses. While we undertake to steer our way through the maze of forms and filings, we have begun the earnest work of protecting the roses, and providing the maintenance they require. The HRF is now accepting donations on behalf of our effort so that friends may donate to an established non-profit whose mission includes the establishment of gardens that preserve old roses.
The passion and generosity of many people have already contributed much needed funding in the name of the Friends of Vintage Roses. It's been overwhelming in fact, and I thank all of you for your support. We work now toward an open garden this May, and invite all of you to join us to celebrate the saving of a collection of antique roses.
There is much to be done. Many of you will recall my earlier blog on pruning the rose garden in 2010. The garden and collection have received minimal care over the past three years, principally the time I have been able to devote to it, plus some labor in weeding and mulching. Gophers have increased in number, and sections of the plantings are heavily damaged. Many varieties are gone, perhaps lost---their retrieval from all of you, a goal for the future.
So, our initial mission is to stabilize the collection of roses, improve the health of the plants, decrease the encroachment of weeds and vermin, and make the garden presentable so that you may enjoy and learn from the roses at our open garden this spring. With that we include our fundamental goal, which is to preserve the collection. And to that purpose we intend to propagate as many of the varieties in the collection as we can this summer. We feel that making the collection fully mobile, in containers, is the only way we can be certain to preserve the whole collection. Some of these may be passed on to other public gardens so that duplicates exist elsewhere.
Over the next weeks leading to May this blog will share more of our story as it unfolds, and more about the roses---the thing that drives our passions.
To the right is our fund-raising marker. The goal that we have set for the coming year is $40,000. This should provide us with the needed materials and labor (along with the wondrous voluteers at Dirt Days), to do the needed restoration work to our collection, propagate about 60% of the collection, and complete our processes involved in the incorporation and non-profit IRS filings for the Friends of Vintage Gardens. And to the far, far right, don't miss the upcoming Dirt Day on Saturday, February 11th at the garden. We anticipate beautiful weather, and the camaraderie is out of this world. So is the food at our afternoon pot luck lunch. Come join us! Bring a dish, a spade and a pair of pruners for Dirt Days kickoff for 2012, a year that promises a rosier world!