Do you remember the robot from 'Lost in Space'? These warnings were accompanied by the robot waving its arms, the lights on its head blinking, and its body moving back and forth.
Well, I am warning you! My arms are waving, my head is shaking, and my body is jumping up and down. Warning! Warning!
What am I warning you about? A rose.
Yes, a pretty rose. A very pretty rose. A rose by a sweet name - the Butterfly Rose. That name just doesn't seem to impart danger. But I'm here to tell you the truth. And to warn you.
The Butterfly Rose is the nickname of the rose 'Mutabilis'. Those sweet little blooms look a bit like butterflies all over it. When I planted Mutabilis in the middle of a corner in my garden, my sister laughed. Laughed!
"Where's the rest of the plantings?", she asked.
"That one rose will grow to take up the entire corner." One look at her and I knew she doubted me. "Really!"
I knew. Or, at least I thought I knew. I knew Mutabilis got to 10 ft. tall at maturity. I knew it would grow to fill in the entire 8 ft. corner.
What I didn't know was that Mutabilis would grow from around 5 ft. tall last year to almost 9 ft. tall this year - only its fourth year! I didn't know that instead of just filling in the corner, it would outgrow it! I'm thinking 10 ft. tall is a small estimate of its mature size, and 8 ft. wide doesn't even come close.
I really don't care how tall this rose gets. The sky is the limit - literally. But width is another matter. It covers the sidewalk, and no one can pass by. I have cut it back twice this year already and I'm sadly realizing I am going to have to keep trimming on it to keep it within the bounds of its corner. Not what I had planned at all.
|No room to walk on this sidewalk!|
Last year I waxed poetic about Mutabilis. I even wrote, "I have it in a corner where it can grow as large as it wishes." Ha! This year I know - Mutabilis is an uncontrollable monster in disguise!
|For reference: the fence (far left) is over 6 ft. tall here!|
I still recommend this rose. It's an easy care rose to grow. But now I'm adding a warning:
Grow Mutabilis at your own risk. It needs a large area.
A very large area.
You have been warned.