I was walking through the garden trying to assess what is left to do before winter descends upon us for good and I ran into a lovely surprise. My miniature rose decided to brave two killing frosts and a freezing rain and bloom in the middle of November.

Contrary to popular belief roses are very resilient plants. The only thing they really can't live without is sunshine, everything else they'll take in stride.

When September rolls in they are enticed into a second flush of bloom which often lasts well after the first frost. I have spectacular pictures, taken in December, of delicate rosebuds encased in ice.

Which brings me back to my tiny rose, which is the last flower left in the garden, floating over a glut of fallen leaves and dried up stems like it got the wrong season. Even the toad lilies have abandoned the fight.

I often wondered what is the secret for making roses thrive, sometimes it feels like I can't do anything right by them no matter how much I try.

I can dutifully rehash the theory regarding rose care, for what it's worth: prune them in spring when the forsythia blooms if their variety requires pruning, water them deeply and infrequently, don't overcrowd them, feed them a lot, they consume a lot of energy blooming, mulch them to keep their roots cool and clear the diseased leaves and stems off the plant and the ground around it, fungi and molds tend to overwinter in the ground. The most important thing to keep in mind is that they must have eight hours of direct sunlight every day. No amount of care will make up for the lack of that.

Author's Bio: 

Main Areas: Garden Writing; Sustainable Gardening; Homegrown Harvest
Published Books: “Terra Two”; “Generations”; "The Plant - A Steampunk Story"; "Letters to Lelia"; "Fair"; "Door Number Eight"; "A Year and A Day"; "Möbius' Code"; "Between Mirrors"
Career Focus: Author; Consummate Gardener;
Affiliation: All Year Garden; The Weekly Gardener; Francis Rosenfeld's Blog

I started blogging in 2010, to share the joy of growing all things green and the beauty of the garden through the seasons. Two garden blogs were born: allyeargarden.com and theweeklygardener.com, a periodical that followed it one year later. I wanted to assemble an informal compendium of the things I learned from my grandfather, wonderful books, educational websites, and my own experience, in the hope that other people might use it in their own gardening practice.