The Memorial Stone

Visitors to the Santa Rosa Rural Cemetery on Franklin Avenue in Santa Rosa can now find this memorial plaque to Charles Schulz.

The memorial stone honoring Sparky was placed in the rose garden section of the cemetery in the winter before any roses had bloomed.

Near Sparky’s plaque is this blooming rose with a sweet fragrance.

Now there are a couple of lovely blooming roses, and I hope all these roses will flourish with the sun they will get when the huge (dead) cypress (I believe it is a cypress) is removed.

This rose bush is also nearby.

I chose the spot for the rock and plaque near a rose named Devoniensis–because it is named for Devon, a beautiful county in Southern England where my grandmother lived, and I have visited a number of times.

On a recent Saturday, several rose enthusiasts, led by Sandra Frary, met with Greg Lowry of Vintage Gardens in Sebastopol.

Greg and I are greeting each other with crossed pruners. We are standing in front of Devoniensis, which Greg described as magnolia white, with a delicate bloom and a heady fragrance.

I am afraid I missed the blooms this spring, but I have vowed, like The Little Prince, to tend my rose–bringing extra water, mulch, and fertilizer during the summer, and will await spring with anticipation.

This cemetery is a favorite place for dog walkers in the neighborhood, and I like to think that friends walking by the stone say hello to Sparky!


Voilà, a beautiful sight when I went to water ‘my’ rose on Saturday.

The limbs of the enormous Monterey Cypress have come off, and the strong trunk will come down, too.
This will give the roses more sunshine, which will serve them well.

It is a springtime to look forward to!

The devoniensis rose that the cemetery committee propagated for me from the rose by Sparky’s rock, has bloomed. The fragrance is subtle but lovely.

I look forward to getting it into the ground after the rains come, and seeing many blooms in future years.

On one of our very hot days recently I carried a bucket of water to water my rose.

I was happy to see that it was damp at the base, but I am sure it was glad for a little extra water.

And it had several flowers, which have a lovely fragrance.

I can’t say that the entire plant looks lovely YET, but with the added sunshine they will be getting since the large blocking Cedar was removed, they should leaf out in the Spring and perhaps fulfill the dream of the group that created the rose garden there in the cemetery.

Sparky’s rock is waiting.

See Sparky’s stone at bottom right.

So many people in the neighborhood of the Rural Cemetery take care of it in many ways.

This lovely photo of devoniensis was sent by one of the ‘caretakers.’

One of my usual routes of travel takes me along Franklin Avenue beside the cemetery, and now that the Cedar has been removed I can glance over and see many roses a’blooming.

—Jean Schulz

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