By Andrea Pavee
When I was a teenager, Japanese roses were the craze throughout Malaysia. Pot after flourishing pot could be seen in houses, planter boxes, pots or growing in verdant beauty on the ground. Their brightly coloured hues offered a warm welcome to all who passed by.
Their popularity was due in part to the fact that they were easy to maintain, and even easier to propagate. Just cut off a stem, stick it into the ground and in no time, blooms abound.
Additionally, they came in so many hues, everyone was spoilt for choice.
Nanie and Aunty Gladys just loved them.
Since Nanie lived with us, our home was full of them. The same went for Aunty Gladys. Their roses could be found cascading from hanging pots, in full bloom in planter boxes, and a riot of colour flourishing on the ground.
By and by the fad died and other flowers and plants took centerstage.
However, recently I found their popularity resurging once again as I made my way through the roads and byways during my morning walk, and in an effort to try my hand at them, I decided to get some from a dear friend, Mrs. Arun.
Today, I have 7 different coloured blooms at home. Some have been repotted into bigger pots while others have been left hanging on the thin beams of the awning at the front porch.
The flowers open up in the morning and close each evening. To keep them happy, a daily diet of sunshine and water is more than enough to keep them at their best and brightest.
While their resurgence today may not equal that of the 80s, they are a good, fuss-free and easy plant to keep at home.
While many nurseries do sell blooms for sale, if you can grab a few stalks from friends, that would be the best. Not only will they be free, you will also be able to share some common ground with each other. Gardening is a wonderful way to make and keep friends.