Rosa 'Royal Highness'
She failed me. I gave her every chance over the course of 15 years. She was one of my first rose purchases. It was nearing the end of bareroot season. I didn't know any better, didn't know that a fresh plant was a far better choice than the kind that come with the roots packed in sawdust in plastic bags, sitting in the heat for weeks before I came along and bought her. She was never a good rose--the Rust was heavy and the flowers were few and far between, but I tried, Lord how I tried. For six years.
After six years, I decided to keep trying. I got some good fresh growth, took a good cutting, and rooted myself a new plant, discarding the grafted one. Perhaps she'd be better on her own roots. The cutting grew. It looked better than the discarded grafted plant. A lot better. I had hope. I gave it nine more years of patient care--a ridiculous amount, an absurd--and finally today Mr. Shovel got his way.
I would get a few flowers a year one or two of them absolute perfection, and a lot of rust. She failed me. I gave her every chance, good soil, good fertilizer, good water, protection from gophers and moles. She failed me. I did not fail her. Some battles are not worth fighting. I should have known better. We should have known better.