Romance of Roses
“There is simply the rose; it is perfect in every moment of its existence.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Everything You Need to Know About Roses
(click each topic to learn more about roses)
- The Innumerable Variety of Roses
- Rose Floriography (Language of Roses)
- Roses Throughout the Ages
- Symbolism of Roses in Different Cultures
- Roses and Their Uses
- Roses in Literature
The beauty of roses has captivated people for centuries. Their elegant beauty and intoxicating fragrance has inspired countless artists, gardeners, poets, writers, composers, and songwriters over the years. They are timeless, classical, and indomitable - whether displayed on street corners, in artwork, or clothing, or even if placed with utmost love and care in a vase on the kitchen table! Roses have symbolized everlasting love and romance since ancient times. It is needless to say that any form of a rose can ignite love, and spark magic. In fact, they are a foolproof way of telling someone you “love” them!
"What a lovely thing a rose is!” - Arthur Conan Doyle
Often referred to as the "Queen of Flowers”, roses are one of the most loved flowers in the world. These flowers are amazingly versatile, and come in a stunning array of shapes, sizes and shades, making them a favorite not only in yards and gardens around the world, but also when giving gifts, or when representing in any art form!
- Roses are perennials, meaning they live more than one year, and return every spring!
- Roses are the birth flower of the month of June, and are considered to be the 15th wedding anniversary flower. They are a perfect way to show that no matter what happens, love is still as strong and passionate as the day one got married.
The Innumerable Variety of Roses
In the gardening world, roses are probably the most popular flowering shrub. The Rosa genus includes more than 300 species of roses and several thousands of cultivars (cultivated or hybrid roses). With all rose classifications, and countless hybrids, roses may be categorized into three main categories:
- Old Garden Roses
- Wild Roses
- Modern Roses
Within these three main categories are a countless variety of roses such as:
- Hybrid Tea Roses
- Grandiflora Roses
- Floribunda Roses
- Polyantha Roses
- Miniature Roses
- Gallica Roses
- Miniflora Roses
- Shrub Roses
- Climber/Rambler Roses
- Groundcover/Landscape Roses
- Alba Roses
- Bourbon Roses
- Centifolia Roses
- English/David Austin Roses
- China Roses
- Damask Roses
"Stop and smell the roses."
- The word "Rose is derived from the Latin word, "ROSA".
- Yellow roses are the quintessential friendship flower. They are a delightful way to show that you care and want to continue your friendship!
Rose Floriography (Language of Roses)
In the Victorian Era, the language of roses was rich, beautiful, and emotional. It offered a way to express certain thoughts and emotions in their tightly laced society. Flowers, especially roses, meant different things to different people. The color, and sometimes even the number of roses, could depict different things. Different colors hold different flower meanings and since the presence of roses can feel timeless and abundant, they can bring years worth of memories and moments.
Red Roses - Love & Romance
Pink Roses - Love, Elegance, Friendship,
Grace, Gratitude, Happiness, Admiration, & Appreciation
Peach Roses - Modesty, Genuineness, Gratitude,
Appreciation, & Sympathy
Purple/Lavender Roses - Love at first sight,
Majesty, Fascination, & Splendor
Yellow Roses - Happiness, Friendship, Joy, Care,
& Good Health
Orange Roses - Love, Admiration, Energy,
Fascination, Enthusiasm, & Passion
White Roses - Marriage, Remembrance,
Innocence, Purity, & New Beginnings
Ivory Roses - Charm, Luxury, & Elegance
Roses Throughout the Ages
Estimated to be more than 35 to 40 million years old, roses have a rich cultural history. According to historian Mauro Ambrosoli, in the Near East, the popularity of the rose spread along with the Persian idea of the “paradise garden.” It then made its way to Europe via the Romans. It was the Romans who exploited the flower to its fullest - from rose perfumes to scents in food and wine, and for bathing purposes.
Then, there were the petals. They used the petals as carpets on special occasions. Not only that, as a symbol of vanity during the Roman Empire, emperors used to shower their guests with tons of rose petals during lavish dinners. In fact, “Rosalia” was an extravagant rose festival held annually in Rome during the Roman Empire. In Ancient Egypt, roses were also cherished and petals have been discovered in many tombs. Over time, the rose’s associations with love, femininity, purity, and death were further developed in literature and art, as well as a botany. The influence of roses is also present in the world of William Shakespeare. The quote from the play Romeo and Juliet, “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet,” is highly popular.
Symbolism of Roses in Different Cultures
Throughout the centuries, roses have become an integral part of different cultures and societies.
- On November 20, 1986, President Ronald Reagan officially made the rose the national flower emblem of the United States.
- Georgia, Iowa, New York, North Dakota, and Washington, D.C all have a different rose variety as their state flower.
- Rose is also the national flower of England.
- April 23rd is St. George Day in Catalonia, Spain, where traditionally people offer red roses to their partners as a symbol of their love.
- In Italy, red roses are also considered the flower of love and passion.
- In Germany, white roses express condolences and are commonly found at funerals.
- Korea celebrates “Rose Day” on the 14th of May. Like in Catalonia and Italy, couples exchange fresh roses to express their love and devotion to each other.
- Flowers are a traditional gift for both men and women in Japan. White roses stand for innocence and purity, while red roses are a powerful symbol of love, romance, and passion.
National days are a fun way to celebrate odd and unusual things. Here are a few national days centered around roses:
- February 7th - Rose Day
- June - National Rose Month
- June 12th - National Rose Day
- September 22nd - World Rose Day
- Botanists refer to the thorns in roses as “prickles.” So, in other words, roses are protected not by “thorns,” but by “prickles.”
- About 100 million roses are grown for Valentine’s Day each year.
- The world record, earned in Oct. 2020, for the tallest rose bush ever recorded is 28 feet. It belongs to Hafizullah Khaled, and is in Vienna, Austria.
- The oldest living rose is over 1,000 years old! It is growing in a large bush beside the Hildesheim Cathedral in Germany.
Roses and Their Uses
Did you know that aside from their captivating appearance and beautiful fragrance, they have a history of curative and culinary uses?
- Roses are certified to be antiseptic, anti-oxidant, astringent, and anti-inflammatory, and are a rich source of Vitamins A, B3, C, D, and E. Therefore, they are available in many ways as skin care, hair care, eye care, digestive care, and herbal medicinal products.
- Roses are also popular for their culinary uses. Products like rose syrups, rose essences, rose petal jams, rose herbal teas, rose yogurt, rose sherbet, etc. are all made up of roses.
- Rose hips offer nourishing Vitamin C.
- Roses are also used in preparation of various perfumes, lotions, creams, oils, soaps, etc.
- Roses are not only decorative while fresh, but the petals may be dried and kept for decorative or sentimental purposes, or even to use as potpourri or air fresheners.
- Last, but definitely not the least, roses have been incorporated in the fashion industry for ages - not only in home decor, but rose motifs have also found their way onto fabrics, wallpapers, corsages, and so much more!
Roses in Literature
Roses are perhaps one of the richest in symbolism in modern or classical (especially romantic) literature. They have been used by poets, novelists, musicians, and artists over the centuries to embody love, beauty, elegance, and virtue.
Some popular rose quotes:
- “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet” - Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare
- “Take time to smell the roses” - Proverb
- “True love is like little roses, sweet, fragrant in small doses” - Ana Claudia Antunes
- “This love is the rose that blooms forever” - Rumi
- “O, my love is like a red, red rose” - Robert Burns
- “She is lovelier than all the roses in the world” - Avijeet Das
- “The rose speaks of love silently in a language known only to the heart” - Unknown
- “Every rose has its thorn, just like every night has its dawn” - Poison, Every Rose Has Its Thorn
- “Life is like a rose, peeping through the hardships of life to bloom with color” - Stephanie
- “There are many flowers in one’s life's…but only one rose” - Unknown
- “Long live the rose that grew from the concrete when no one else ever cared” - Tupac Amaru Shakur
- “One rose is enough for the dawn” - Edmond Jabes
- “Coming up roses” - Keira Knightley
Here, at Altenew, we are in love with this rich flora that can be found in the world around us.
Let’s take a look at the amazing product line up we have with our romance of roses: