The Dry Garden: Smell the roses

This may not be the time to plant a rose, but as a long rose season concludes its spring flush, it is an ideal moment to study the varieties around town, then consider which ones you like and what they might do for your garden.

How such hardy plants spawned the modern rose care industry will one day make a fabulous subject for a business writer. A 2004 Home cover story titled “Rethinking the Rose” challenged the idea that roses need pampering, if stumping their branches in winter, drenching their roots in summer, dusting the foliage with fungicides and filling their arteries with systemic pesticides can be called pampering.

What is worth picking up on here and now is that few notionally water-loving plants transition quite so seamlessly into the Mediterranean-climate garden.

Click here to keep reading about roses in the Dry Garden in the Los Angeles Times. If

High good, low bad: Mead in May 2011

Lake Mead’s rise by two feet in May presages a total rise of 32 feet by the end of February, 2012, reported the Las Vegas Review-Journal several weeks ago. Last night at midnight, the elevation of the largest storage reservoir in the US was 1,097.89, leaving another 30 feet due for release from Lake Powell upstream. The federal Bureau of Reclamation graphic, left, shows how much water sits in reserve as snowpack in the upper Colorado region.

As the snow melts and the water makes its way through the dam system upstream, the 2010-11 water year on the Colorado will push Lake Mead steadily upward from the 1,075 elevation, at which point shortages would have been declared for Arizona and Nevada. For California to be hit by shortages, the reservoir would have to drop further because of an antique priority rights system governing the river.

While Las Vegas celebrated

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