Roses, Murder mysteries and spring sunshine

Roses, Murder mysteries and spring sunshine

With luck there will be warm, Spring sunshine in April to allow you to sit and relax in the garden. Maybe you can anticipate your roses in bloom. Most come into bloom depending on weather conditions from mid-June onwards depending on where you live..

For a change, if you enjoy reading murder mysteries, we have a couple of suggestions with Rose-related titles for you to enjoy before the roses come into bloom in your own garden.

Coincidentally both are centred around the Benedictines and monasteries.

First, there is the hugely enjoyable The Rose Rent, the 13th book in the Brother Cadfael series by Ellis Peters, set in and around Shrewsbury Abbey during the historical period known as the Anarchy when King Stephen was in a long-drawn out conflict with his cousin, the Empress Maud, over who should rule England.

The story itself revolves around a series of murders affecting those connected to the widow Judith Perle, who, following the death of her husband and her baby, has gifted her former home to the Abbey for the rent of one white rose payable annually. As ever, it is the investigation of Brother Cadfael, an Abbey Monk, and the town’s sheriff, Hugh Beringar, that untangles the mystery.

The second book is The Name of the Rose, by Umberto Eco. This time, the setting is a monastery in Northern Italy, where a visitor, William of Baskerville, is asked by the Abbott to look into the death of illuminator Adelmo of Otranto, who fell from the octagonal Aedificium, which houses the abbey’s labyrinthine library. Inevitably, further murders follow and a complex mystery has to be unravelled.

What could be better than sitting in the sunshine, anticipating the scent of the roses in your garden with a gripping murder mystery to read?

And if you are moved to be a little more energetic in the garden, here are your gardening tips for April.

Cultivation notes for April

From Easter onwards, containerised roses should be available to plant.

If you haven’t already fed your existing roses then do so as soon as possible with a slow release fertilizer. This can be rose specific or ones which show on the product is suitable for roses..

April is also the time to start your spraying programme. Wait until you have 15 to 20 cm (6 to 8 inches) of new growth then start a spraying programme.  If in the past you haven’t had any disease problems then you can use one of the combined fungicide insecticide sprays. Such as Rose Clear Ultra. If you have had blackspot and rust in the past then use a fungicide and when needed separate insecticide.

Remember, we can also supply sundries such Fungicide, Insecticides and Fertilizers. We also stock soil improvers, John Innes No 3 and a small selection of Permanent frost proof pots. These items can only be collected. Just check on our website here: Sundries:

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