Call for articles for the Winter 2009 RHA Newsletter

Friends, it’s that time again.

Please send me your articles, notes, questions, and short autobiographical sketches (yes–tell us something about yourself–surely you can do that) for the Winter 2009 issue of the RHA Newsletter.

If you’ve already written something to send in, it really is OK for you to go ahead and send it now. You don’t have to wait any longer.

If you haven’t written anything yet, go ahead and write something. You read others’ articles–it’s only fair that you write something for others to read. Share what you’ve learned, and we’ll all learn from each other.

The announced symposium topics for the Winter Newsletter:

Breeding Thornless Roses. Maybe you have found several thornless or nearly thornless seedlings in the seedlings of a particular cross. If you look back through the parents and grandparents of that group of seedlings, you may find a variety that seems to produce more the average number of thornless offspring. Or you may not–it may be a new combination that is leading to the production of roses that don’t bite. Tell us about it. Or maybe you tried to combine two varieties that are well known for having thornless offspring–and what you got might be recruited to play bit parts in the more gruesome scenes of next year’s Halloween horror flick. Maybe you have an idea of a good way to develop thornless varieties. Share your ideas with the thousands who read this newsletter, and it won’t be long before we can all grow roses that don’t accidentally bite the hand that feeds them. Friends, it’s for the good of humanity.

Beginner’s Luck. This is a general category, not a specific topic, and may include anything that is not specifically on the special symposium topic for the issue. If you’ve found a new tool that is especially useful to use in hybridizing, or a foolproof (or almost foolproof) way of keeping deer from confusing your crop of developing hips with a buffet of 2-minute lollipops, or a better way to grow seedlings to blooming size, or a better way to propagate your roses for test–share. Over the years you have benefited from the experience and common sense of others, just as the rest of us have, so share your experience and common sense.

When your article is needed: Now, or at least soon.

In the Fall Newsletter, I asked for articles to be sent in by November 20. Today is November 20.

I have received one article, and the promise of another. There is still room for your article of whatever kind, on whatever topic you wish to write about.

Color Cover. If you would like to sponsor the color cover of the coming issue, please get in touch with me or Larry Peterson. So far we don’t have a sponsor for this issue’s cover. The color makes our newsletter look good, and sponsoring the color gives you a chance to share pictures of one or more of your good seedlings with the rest of us.

I would like to begin assembling the Winter issue in about 10 days, and would like to get it finished and ready to go to press by the end of the first week of December, so please think quickly about what you might write for your Newsletter–and write.

If you have an idea for an article but you’re not sure whether it is worthwhile or you’re having some trouble getting started, get in touch with me and we’ll talk about it and get your writer’s block unblocked.


If you’d planned to write an article for the Newsletter but your plans were sidetracked, it would be a really good time to get them back on the main track.

I’d hoped to send the issue to press about now so that you members could have it in your hands before the month is over, but so far I’ve not received enough material to fill the issue. In fact, the issue is less than half full, and the color cover sponsorship is still available.

Please remember that this is your Newsletter. It’s the members’ Newsletter, not the editor’s Newsletter. I’m just the editor, and I depend on you for articles. If you don’t feel that you have anything to say about the announced symposium topic of Breeding Thornless Roses, that is no problem. I’m happy to have articles on any other topic. If you’re not sure whether something you’ve thought about would be OK for the Newsletter, or you want to write something about an experiment you’ve tried or a problem you’ve had or solved (or something else), just get in touch with me. Almost any rose-hybridizing-related topic (including propagation, cultivation, pest and disease control, record-keeping, getting roses tested, preventing damp-off, etc.) is fine. What is important is to write about your experience or idea so that you can share it with others.

Many of you have been writing recently–the forum has been really busy–so I know the ideas and the time are there. Take the time to write an article for your Newsletter. Maybe you explored an idea on the forum and got some feedback, and now you have a better idea. Good. Let’s hear about it in an article for the Newsletter. Maybe you were interested by a thread on the forum and you could write an article organizing and summarizing the ideas and exploring what they might mean. Maybe a cross didn’t work out this year, and you have an idea of why it didn’t. Maybe . . . something else. The length is not important–just get it written. Once you get started, it will write itself. Send it as an attachment, or paste it into the body of an email, but get it to me.

Remember that what you think and what you write are important, and it’s important that you send me your articles for the Newsletter–soon.