Enjoy the Roses

Pink rose, morning sun - Knoxville, TN

We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon — instead of enjoying the roses blooming outside our windows today.

Dale Carnegie

Perhaps the coordinators of Knoxville’s 2021 Dogwood Arts Festival events had Dale Carnegie’s quote in mind as they invited guests to stroll through Open Rose Gardens two weekends in a row.

Right outside our windows, so to speak, gardens in the west end of our town were available for touring — and photographing. And we couldn’t resist.

Pink roses climb trellis, Knoxville, TN

The home of Michael and Mary Bates provided more roses than we’ve seen anywhere. First planted by Kathy Brennan who sold the home to the Bates, the gardens showcased over 300 rose bushes, laid out in miniature garden settings, spreading underneath old-growth trees and climbing trellises in the backyard.

Yellow rose with buds, Knoxville TN

Roses of many colors (some labeled with botanical names) leaned toward the sun as if welcoming photographers and rose lovers to lean in as well.

Since getting into the hearts of flowers is what I love to do best, I tried to move in without stepping on anything, focusing my camera on the hearts of the flowers in order to enter the private worlds of these tender, ephemeral beauties.

Orange rose, Knoxville, TN
White rose, Knoxville, TN

Even though the rich reds with their velvety petals made us linger longest, it was the pinks that must have been a favorite of the original owner of the garden. They dominated the gardens while allowing their “cousins” time to shine as well.

Pink rose with soft light, Knoxville, TN

A profusion of pink roses bending ragged in the rain speaks to me of all gentleness and its enduring.

William Carlos Williams

If you’ve been around a while, you’ve probably heard the phrase, “I never promised you a rose garden . . . ” Thank you, Dogwood Arts, for a promise well kept.

Travel for beauty,

Rusha & Bert

30 thoughts on “Enjoy the Roses

    1. Oh, the Places We See

      It is VERY nice of homeowners to open their gardens in Knoxville. It’s part of our Dogwood Arts Festival, but I don’t remember rose gardens being tacked on to the spring festival. So glad they were. The bushes were loaded with gorgeous blooms. Thanks for strolling along with us.

  1. rkrontheroad

    I could almost smell them, lovely. My mother planted a yard full of rose bushes when I was a child. It was my place to go and be alone with them. They are always special to me.

    1. Oh, the Places We See

      They are special to us as well. We might be able to grow what we call “Knock-out Roses” around here, but not these beauties that seem to be quite special. It’s was nice of the two families to allow people to walk through their yards snapping photos. A fun afternoon!

  2. Curt Mekemson

    Right on time, Rusha. We’ve been enjoying our pioneer rose. (It’s an heirloom rose brought west by pioneers in their covered wagons). It’s also known as the Oregon Trail Rose. It thinks it has to include a thousand flowers on one bush. Slight exaggeration.
    Anyway, beautiful flower shots. I can smell the roses. 🙂 –Curt

    1. Oh, the Places We See

      It was a great day for seeing, smelling and taking photos! Because I don’t grow much of anything in my yard, it was special to see how some people spend their time and money on these special plants. Thanks for taking a look and commenting.

  3. thehungrytravellers.blog

    Great photos here, roses can be so photogenic. I don’t want to create any envy here, but living here in the south of England, growing roses really isn’t a challenge! Our only real enemy is blackfly.

    1. Oh, the Places We See

      I love seeing English roses, especially the climbing ones on old homes. (Be still my heart!) I’ve never heard of blackfly, but I hope that’s not one bug that comes our way. Right now, I’m fighting to keep the bunnies from eating every leaf of every annual I plant.

  4. Toonsarah

    How beautiful – and what a wonderful idea to celebrate the roses in this way, by letting everyone enjoy them! If the original planters preferred the pinks, and you love the reds, I will fill a gap, as my own favourites are always the yellow roses 🙂

  5. garden104

    Always love seeing your photography and hearing about you from Nancy Stanley. The best would be to see you in person! Betty McConnell

  6. Pat

    These are so pretty. They brightened my day – especially because I gave up growing roses for mental health reasons. I got tired of feeding the beetles and never seeing any blooms. I was becoming consumed with murderous thoughts towards the beetles so I decided I would force them to go somewhere else (or starve to death). Also growing roses this far north (even without beetles) is hard work.

    1. Oh, the Places We See

      You lasted longer than I would have. We’re fighting rabbits who keep eating our flowers. Frustrating with no clear answer in sight. Enjoy someone else’s roses! It’s neighborly!!

      1. Pat

        And I give anyone who can grow a single rose a whole lot of praise. Try a have-a-heart trap for the rabbits and give them a new home in a woods a few miles away.

    1. Oh, the Places We See

      Thank you so much. We couldn’t go until almost noon, and I was afraid all we would have would be harsh light. But there was mixed shade and sun, much to my delight! Hope your weekend is a good one!

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