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Weather, feral hogs rough on Tyrrell Park rose bushes

February 14, 2017 GMT

In a winter full of Aprils, Tommy Hebert hopes cooler weeks ahead will slow the blooming of the roses at Tyrrell Park.

Hebert, a member of the Golden Triangle Rose Society, was at the park on Monday snipping bad-looking branches from the park’s rose plants.

“Everything is in bad shape because of the heat. And stem canker,” Hebert said.

He and five other men worked the garden, trying to reclaim it from scraggly stems and to repair the beds, which have been ripped up by feral hogs that were looking for earthworms and grubs in the soft soil.

“There’s something working against us at all times,” Hebert said.

Mid-February is typically the best time to cut back roses to encourage the best growth as spring nears, according to Hebert.

“It’s not just hot,” Hebert said. “It went on and on. They (rose bushes) think they’ve been in April since the middle of December.”


Last week, the temperature rose to the mid-80s. A record high of 85 degrees was reported in Beaumont on Sunday.

A cold front is supposed to deliver more seasonal temperature this week, but new growth already is visible at Tyrrell Park.

Hebert said he has to be ruthless and cut away stems that already have eyes on them, the point where new blooms will flower.

“The purpose of pruning is to get rid of dead, dying and diseased branches,” he said.

Dale Dardeau got in close to spot what’s called rose canker. He wanted to cut it back as far as possible, wiping his shears down with an antiseptic wipe to keep from spreading the disease from his blades.

In late April, the Golden Triangle Rose Society will host the South Central District of the American Rose Society, which includes Texas, Arkansas and Oklahoma.

It won’t be the Tyrrell Park roses that are shown. The roses up for competition are from each gardener’s home plantations.

“Our show is the last Saturday in April,” he said. “When you cut a rose, it should bloom in 45 to 50 days.”

The end of April is still 70 days away.

“When you’re a gardener, you’re also a gambler,” Hebert said.