Young roses of all the kinds we grow very quickly throw up buds which you must pick off. As the plants grow along in August and September they will continue to form buds, and instead of picking the buds off as soon as they form let them grow a little larger. There is little weakening of the plant going on by forming petals (it is seed bearing that weakens), and then cut the bud off with two or three eyes of the growth; you will get a better break from the remaining eyes.
When cutting the fully developed buds after you are letting the plants flower you should cut back to three eyes. If very strong and the buds are numerous you may leave only two eyes, but three are better.
The neatest and best support for roses is a straight wire stake, one for each plant, and they are held in place at the top by some lighter wire running over each row of plants three or four feet above the plants, and to which the upright wire stake is fastened by a string or a piece of fine wire.
One large grower I know - and a good one - runs stovepipe wire across the surface of the bench, or an inch above it, near the plant, and a similar wire five or six feet above the plant, and from the bottom wire to the top one runs at each plant a strong but cheap string. This answers the purpose just as well, but the strings are thrown away every year and the bottom wire has to be removed, so it costs something, while the stout wire stake, once bought, will last indefinitely, or till the Panama ditch is dug.
Rose Mme. Chatenay.
I have said nothing yet about watering, and it is the hardest part to describe. To a gardener it should be only necessary to say, "Water when they want it." Texture of soil and health and vigor of plant will make a difference. Sometimes you will have a big cut all in one week; especially is this true of the first and second cuttings. Be careful, then, not to over-water, for the plants have lost a great deal of their foliage and don't need so much. Let the beds get very slightly on the dry side, and then water. Don't let the hose run on the beds in a hard stream. A coarse rose is a good thing; it will leave the surface of the bed in a more friable state, and you should only give water enough to wet through to the boards. -A soaking that drenches the beds and runs out through the boards must carry with it lots of the fertilizing properties of the soil and manure.
Neither will a bed be uniformly wet or dry. There will be spots or spaces that from some causes dry out faster than others. Only the man in charge knows this. If he is a rose grower he will be familiar with every square foot of surface and will let no part suffer for want of water or the other extreme.
In sunny weather the surface of the bed will often appear dry when an inch down it is abundantly moist. If we are strangers to the texture of the soil we are watering, then sight is not an infallible guide, but with the addition of a touch you are dull indeed if you don't know when a plant or bed needs watering.
We syringe for two purposes. When using the word "syringing" it may lead our brother craftsmen across the Atlantic to believe that we use a brass syringe. "Why, bless your dear heart, don't you know, old fellow," our boys would get so lazy with a hand syringe that they would never keep down the red spider? and fancy a man, or two men, syringing a house 600 feet long and fifty feet wide! They would have to begin on the Fourth of July to get it syringed by Thanksgiving. The %-inch hose will not only syringe as well, but much better, for you will do it thoroughly with that beautiful "upper-cut" so dear to a real gardener.
Syringing is done on bright mornings throughout the season, to produce a genial, healthy moisture that is relished by the leaves, and it is also done to prevent the lodgment of red spider on the under side of the leaf (and the spider is ever ready to locate on the fine leaves). If you are free of the spider, then don't syringe on wet, damp days or very cold stormy days; no harm at all in missing a day or a week, but when firing very hard, damp down the paths, under the benches, etc. The thrips have become very troublesome of late. We have known of their injuring the buds of American Beauty for many years, especially in the summer and early fall months, but it seems of late to have grown more troublesome and has spread to the tea roses and also carnations.
Cayenne pepper is the best destroyer. We heat a number of bricks almost red hot and put down four bricks on the path of a house 21x150. On each brick we spread a tablespoonful of cayenne pepper. Be sure the pepper is of the best quality and fresh. We have found quite a difference if it has been on the country storekeeper's shelf a year or two, for it has lost its strength; so get the freshest and best quality you can.
The greatest scourge to the rose grower is the mildew, the minute fungus that lays hold and soon covers every leaf. It cripples the petals, ruins the leaves and stunts the plants. A dose of it in winter is a calamity, but, prevalent as it is, our largest and best growers never fear it and seldom have it, for they know its causes and never give it a chance to get a start. Mildew is caused by any check to the vitality of the plant, which shrinks up the cellular tissue and renders the leaves susceptible to the resting spores, which must be ever floating around. Perfectly healthy leaves resist it, as do healthy lungs resist the germs of tuberculosis, while weak ones succumb; for consumption is contagious or infectious, and not hereditary, as formerly supposed; only in certain families there is a predisposition, and in certain plants there is most truly a predisposition for mildew. Catherine Mermet is always ready on the slightest excuse to be host to this troublesome fungus, but, as once said before in these pages, these things are all right as they are, and if there were no reward for watchfulness, care and brains there would be nothing in it and the wise man would be no better off than the fool man, which would be very annoying in this world, however great equality is to be carried out in the next.