The goals for the Rose & Herb Garden are to:
- Show that selected roses can be grown successfully with minimal maintenance by practicing integrated pest management methods in an organic environment.
- Display examples of many types of roses, including hybrid tea, floribunda, grandiflora, rugosa, polyantha, shrub, climbing, species, groundcover, and standard.
- Show that herbs such as lavender and rosemary can serve as attractive companion plantings.
- Display a rose garden that reflects a 1900-era sensibility.
- Demonstrate a relatively small-space herb garden.
The design for the rose garden comprises four color zones: white, pink, red, and yellow. Herbs and lavender interspersed with violas, an herb garden in the center, pathways, and arbors complete the plan.
Each color zone of the garden displays the variety in different types of roses, including hybrid tea, shrub, miniature, floribunda, grandiflora, and species roses.
The circle in the center of the rose garden includes a variety of herbs that change during the season. Featured herbs include lemon balm, oregano, sage, and thyme. Other plants among the herbs include nasturtium and viola, depending on the season.
A significant challenge in rose gardening on Whidbey Island is damage from deer grazing. The deer population has continued to grow since the original installation of the Rose Garden, and rose gardening in an unfenced, open area remains a challenge.
For WSU resources on home gardening in Washington State, please see http://gardening.wsu.edu/home/
Three WSU pamphlets on rose care are FREE to download. Go to the Flower Beds link of the home gardening site, or search by publication # on https://pubs.extension.wsu.edu/