TYLER - The fragrance of roses filled the air Thursday as the fall breeze blew through the Tyler Municipal Rose Garden.
People walked through hearing tips from tour guide Mark Chamblee of Chamblee Rose Nursery as he talked about planting, pruning and caring for roses.
As part of the 84th Texas Rose Festival, there are free “All About Roses” walk and talk events going on at 9:30 a.m. and 2 p.m. Friday.
The walk includes stopping at the Idea Garden where guests can learn about plants that can cohabitate with roses and how they create compost in the garden with lawn clippings and the trimmings from the roses. It also includes walking among the roses in the garden and learning how to take care of the roses.
Philip Harden and his wife were a few of the members on Thursday’s tour. The Hardens traveled from England to spend three weeks with friends and attend the Rose Festival.
“We have come to the states for three weeks to visit our friends in Houston,” Harden said. “But we have come to Tyler specifically today for the Rose Festival.”
Harden enjoyed getting to take a walk around the garden hearing all of Chamblee’s knowledge about roses.
“The biggest thing for me was the tour, that you’re talking to someone who knows his roses and was able to transmit that to us,” Harden said. “I particularly like the Idea Garden and the ideas there. It’s nice to see a big spread of roses, but not just one. There is a whole row of the same one and lots of rows. We have seen many places at home in England with roses ... but not on this scale.”
Walking through the garden reminded the Hardens of their first home in England.
“The climbing ones that have lots of flowers reminds us of the first house we lived in,” Harden said. “We had a garage that was covered in roses and had hundreds, possibly even thousands, of little blooms at the right time of the year; it’s absolutely spectacular. Several roses here reminded us of that.”
The Tyler Rose Garden is home to more than 600 varieties of roses totaling over 32,000 bushes.