Rose - The Flower of Love and Romance


What is the flower that everyone visualizes and associates with love or romance? ‘Rose’ is the instant answer by anyone. The rose is placed on a high pedestal by almost all the ancient civilizations which is indicated by the fact that the flower has been associated with numerous myths and legends. Numerous instances abound in the Greek, Roman, Hindu, Jew and Egyptian mythologies and legends. No wonder, the flower is a delight to the viewer and has made inroads into our everyday lives and true to its importance the rose has been acclaimed as the ‘queen of flowers’.

No occasion is complete with out a rose! be it a happy occasion like wedding or a sorrow occasion like death ceremony, the rose is an inseparable part. The rose offers a wide variety in terms of color, size, shape, fragrance etc to choose from, thanks to the breeding efforts over the last century. There are roses suitable as standards, hedges, edges, borders etc and there are roses suitable for arches, pergolas, espaliers etc. Because of the sheer range rose is a challenge, delight and also an eternal fascination to a gardener.

Though there are thousands of varieties of roses, majority of the present day garden roses owe their origin to ‘Tea roses’ and ‘Hybrid perpetuals’. In the later part of 18th century the combination of these two types gave rise to ‘Hybrid teas’. Again the combination of ‘Hybrid teas’ with another class called ‘polyanthas’ resulted in the ‘floribundas’. Thus the garden roses can be classified into major categories such as Tea roses, Hybrid perpetuals, Hybrid teas, Floribundas, Polyanthas, Miniatures etc.

Though temperate and hilly climates offer the best climate for rose gardens, there are numerous varieties that are suitable to varying agro-climates. Modern technology has paved the way for large scale cultivation in controlled conditions such as a glass house. Nevertheless, the beauty of the sprawling rose gardens in United Kingdom, USA, Switzerland etc. offer the natural beauty of the rose, where it has been bred and nurtured over the decades.

Ravikumar Uppaluri is from Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh State in India.The author Holds a Masters degree in Agricultural Sciences and is cofounder of an organization involved in Nature conservation and sustainable development. The author can be reached at uravikumar@yahoo.com



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