Monday, May 18, 2009


Do you ever get sucked in by advertisements pushing something that looks soooo good? Well I used to, then after I was roundly burned a couple of times, I got a bit cynical. Being even a little cynical is so against my nature. I truly want to believe the best in everyone, trust all, and feel if you scratch a creep deep enough, there is a sweet soul lurking. I really want to trust the written word. Naivety, thy name is Patti.

Until you come to those ads that tout--- get amazing back relief instantly-- have buns of steel in six weeks-- walk with out pain the same day with just these magnets-- this tree will grow to 30 feet the first year-- and the ever present, easy to clean sandwich maker. Just about all this stuff is $19.95 plus shipping and handling. That is when my cynical side blossoms.

For years I kept seeing this ad for Robin Hood Roses in fliers usually in the Sunday paper.

"Robin Hood Rose (also called Mediterranean Musk Rose) has delicate, fragrant, long-lasting blooms that grow in colorful clusters. Each cluster has 20-25 perfectly formed carmine-red roses. Plant blooms up to 6 months a year. Has dense, deep green foliage and graceful growing habits. Reaches 4-6' at maturity. Thrives in poor soil, hot dry summers and sub-zero climates. Prefers full or partial sun. This blooming living fence costs less to own and maintain than a wooden or chain link fence."

It sounds perfect. It survives poor soil, heat, cold and still blooms like a banshee?? My kind of plant. Still, my burned fingers kept the check book closed and I passed it by, time after time. Then I discovered Dave's Garden. This is a site that offers a wealth of plant information. It lets you hear from people in your zone about growth habits, positives, negatives, and best of all, the site screens the on line nurseries. Only those that are trustworthy are listed in his Garden Watchdog. Dave also will send you a weekly news letter via e-mail that is as good as most gardening magazines. Free sign up.

I checked his info on the Robin Hood Rose and was surprised that it was actually a real plant with really good reviews. Dave gave several trusted dealers to order from and I bit the bullet.

Of course they came bare root which always gives me pause. But I planted as instructed and with in one year it was impressive but after two years , I am thrilled with this lovely plant. I got 3 plants and now have a lovely living fence 15 feet long and 3' tall. People actually stop and ask what it is. A great people meeter and I am planing to get a bunch more.

I have taken a ton of pictures and none seem to show what I see. Sorry, but this is the best I can do. A recent hail storm damaged it a little but it is bouncing back.

This is a no care plant. Since established , I do not water except in the driest times, never fertilize, and do not dead head and it blooms all summer. I know, I am a bad mother but Robin seems to thrive on inattention at which I am expert in providing. Imagine what it would look like with a little care.

Now that my faith in advertisements is returning , I am beginning to think maybe I CAN have buns of steel in 6 weeks to go with my rock hard abs and that 30 foot tree. Now, where did I put my checkbook??


  1. That is a beautiful rose. I'll check back in six weeks to see if the buns of steel promise worked out!

  2. Gorgeous Patti... I am skeptical when it comes to ads which makes things look like a 'dream come true'....

    My 96 yr. old father-in-law gets more junk mail (selling crap) than anyone I've ever seen... Since he's been interested in health issues for many years, most of his mail s health oriented... Most of it is what I call 'hooey' mail... But---sometimes their advertising will call my name. It sounds too real to be true!!!!

    Glad your roses worked though. They are gorgeous.


  3. Wow! Those roses look great.

    I have drawers full of $19.95 stuff but one ad that really works is the "green bags" for fresh produce. I have kept iceburg lettuce three weeks and it is still useable. One secret is not to wash until ready to use.


  4. The photo looks great! What a plant! it's amazing!
    Patti, would you like to join me in a game, for which I had been tagged? The rules are to be found on my blog!

  5. Oh how gorgeous is that??!! Maybe with some care it would dry up and die, so if I were you, I'd not change a thing!

  6. robin,
    Thanks, it was a nice surprise. I'll have to check the "buns of steel" ad to make sure there isn't a disclaimer for users who are almost 70. Somehow I wonder if BOS wouldn't make sitting uncomfortable. Maybe we will see.

    Hope your father-in-law doesn't buy any of that hooey. Somehow they have his number. If any of it did half of what they say, it would be a good deal.

    Good to know about those Green bags. I researched them and they either got rave reviews or thumbs down. Since I don't know those reviewers and trust you, I may give them a try. I am a huge fresh spinach person and can never make it to the bottom of the bag. Those GBs may solve the problem. Thanks.

    Reader wil,
    Thanks, I will accept the tag in a few days. Have some gotta dos first. At least I won't have to search for a subject when the time comes though I doubt I will do as good a job as you did.

    I do like your thinking and so does my back. I will continue my benign abuse since it seems to be working. Thanks

  7. Hi Patty,

    Reading your post this evening made me smile as I remember a test that ABC News did a few years ago on that famous MAT of Wild Flowers for,what else,$19.95.

    BUT wait! Order before 6 P.M. and we will DOUBLE your order. Just pay the shipping and handling of $39.95 and we will send two mats of wild flowers.

    If you remember, the seeds for thousands of different wild flowers were imbedded in a mat that looked like a roll of sod. All you had to do was unroll the mat and in a few weeks you would be in a fairyland of violets and Lilies of the valley and other colorful and hardy wildflowers.

    Thousands of people complained to the FCC about the ad because the flowers NEVER grew. So, ABC News decided to test it and they ordered about 6 of the flower mats.

    Then, they recruited A horticulturist from Burpee and one from The Burbank Society to test the mats.These guys prepared the ground, fertilized it and when the mats came they rolled them out with the greatest care and guess what? NOTHING CAME UP.....

    I could start a $19.95 store with all the stuff I have ordered that is now cluttering up my garage. I have knives, chia pets,orange glo floor polish,Super Glue, and 4 mats of wild flowers......

    I love that your roses are so beautiful.You are very lucky. In fact,you really should buy a lottery ticket...

  8. Nancy,
    Would be great if there was an group that would test all those products before we get nailed. Maybe you could start it.
    The sad thing is that they all seem like really good ideas at the time.
    You need to hold an "as seen on TV" garage sale except then everyone would be after you.
    Guess we can file it away under lesson learned.
    I do have lotto tickets. Have to to to Missouri to get them and so far--Zip winnings. Oh well it is just for fun she says.

  9. Great story -- and it's true, all it takes is one good experience to restore our faith (and make us all the more gullible for the next false lead?!?!?!). Hopefully not.

  10. Funny Robert but oh so true. We are just a nation that wants to believe.

  11. You are too funny! Glad your Robin Hood Rose turned out so nicely!