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The history of the rose

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The rose has grown alongside mankind for millenia, and has remained one of the most beloved of flowering plants throughout that eventful stretch. It’s managed to transcend boundaries both cultural and geographical, endured the dynamics of gardening trends and holds a special place in the hearts of flower lovers the world over, to this day, some 5,000 years after its introduction in the garden. Did you know?

The oldest rose fossils date back to about 35 million years ago. Nomadic humans are supposed to have grown roses along most frequented routes. Researchers have unearthed petrified rose wreaths at ancient tombs in Egypt and remains of rose hips in parts of Europe. Rose frescoes discovered in Crete were reportedly created in 1600 B.C.

China is believed to be the first culture to introduce the rose in the garden. The reign of the rose soon spread to the rest of the world. In fact, Roman nobles’ devotion to the rose is well documented. They would tread on carpets of rose petals, relax in lavish rose-water baths and use rose petals as confetti during celebrations. It was during this period that roses came to be widely used for making perfume and for their medicinal properties.

The feuding factions in 15th century England chose the rose for their symbol – both of them! While the white rose became the symbol of the House of York, the House of Lancaster picked the red rose as theirs. Henry Tudor would eventually end the war by marrying into the House of York, merging the red rose with the white to create the Tudor rose (also known as the Rose of England)

The age of modern rose began with Guillot’s introduction of “La France”- the first hybrid tea rose in 1867. The groundbreaking hybrid combined the elegant form of hybrid tea rose with the growing habit of hybrid perpetual and the free flowering nature of tea rose. La France was a superb success and paved the way for floribundas, grandifloras, Knockouts and other hybrid roses that adorn modern day gardens.

It’s easy to see how these gorgeous plants captured the attention of humans throughout history – and, today’s roses are easier to grow than ever! Check out our favorite hybrids here.

About Vishu Sharma

Vishu Sharma has written 37 post in this blog.

March 20, 2017