Spotlight on Chambersville Tree Farms – Texas Nursery & Landscape Association (TNLA)
Chambersville Tree Farms, Inc. (CTF) was established to supply North Central Texas with quality trees, organically grown, at competitive prices. Dean and his wife, Carol, have long been avid and knowledgeable gardeners. Dean is particularly interested in trees, while Carol is passionate about roses. Upon retirement, they launched a new business, which ultimately combines both of their special interests.
From the outset, conservation of the land has been the Oswald family’s mission. During construction of the nursery, care was taken to use and enhance topographic features for pond construction and rainwater harvesting; water conservation has been a key element in all planning. For growing, CTF uses a custom potting mix from Shamrock Soil Products, which provides the best in organic media and composted Texas native mulch.
CTF’s inventory consists of natives, as well as trees that are well adapted to our North Texas soils and climate. CTF uses Rootmaker certified products for enhanced root systems, which provides superior caliper and top growth, and purchases only Rootmaker liners, so that their trees develop the best possible root system from propagation to installation, ensuring that they will thrive after installation.
The small farming community of Chambersville, whose small church and cemetery are the last relics of its existence, gave its name to the farm. The property itself was once the Chandler family homestead and Mrs. Chandler was a renowned gardener in the area, which has given rise to another aspect of the present farm.
As they developed the farm, Dean and Carol envisioned a beautiful rose garden in this spacious natural setting, in part as a tribute to the former owner. With the encouragement and assistance of the Heritage Rose Foundation, and particularly, Claude Graves, the treasurer of the Foundation, Dean and Carol began work on the rose garden, which is devoted to only roses grown on their own roots.
After more than a year of design and construction of the garden and the purchase by Dean and Carol of almost every commercially available Tea, China and Noisette rose, planting began in the summer of 2006. The garden is laid out so that each rose has ample space to grow its natural mature size, in a setting akin to the locations where many of the Texas found roses were discovered by the notorious Texas Rose Rustlers twenty to thirty years ago. 145 roses have been planted to date; more than 70 cuttings are currently being grown out for future planting and additional varieties are being sought to complete the collection. In addition to its inherent beauty, the garden will serve as an ongoing demonstration of the best-adapted roses for north Texas’ climate and soil.
The Chambersville Heritage Rose Garden was dedicated on October 12, 2006, as part of the Heritage Rose Foundation’s Annual Conference, held in Dallas that year. The garden is private, but is open to heritage rose enthusiasts by appointment, and plans are being made to open the garden to the public several times a year, as well as for special events. As the garden matures and other amenities are added, many more events will be added to the calendar. For more information about the establishment and goals of the garden, as well as future updates, visit the Heritage Rose Foundation website,www.heritagerosefoundation.org.
The Oswald family has plans for many more subsidiary ventures on the farm, such as pick-your-own veggies, local fishing derbies and other family-oriented events.