Mar 28, 2018

Five Things You Might Not Know About Roses

There are literally thousands of different varieties of roses in the world ranging from a tiny 1cm to an impressive 17cm bloom. Here's our list of interesting facts about the UK's favourite flower.

It's clear that we love our roses. About 20 million of them are sold in the UK around Valentine's day but how much would you pay for just one? The most expensive rose in the world took 15 years and an eye-watering £3 million to cultivate! The Juliet rose, an apricot coloured beauty, was finally shown off at the Chelsea Flower Show in 2006.

As well as being our best loved flower, roses are also the national flower of Finland, Bulgaria, Romania, and the Maldives. But the word 'rose' is actually French and originated from the Latin word, rosa – which means love.

Have you ever noticed how your rose stems are free of 'thorns' when you get them in bouquets? It's a very common mistake to say that roses have thorns. It turns out that those spiky protrusions are actually called prickles. The difference is that thorns have deeper roots in the stem, whereas prickles are attached on the surface which means that they can be snapped off more easily.

Roses can live a very long time! The oldest known thriving rose is thought to be about 1,000 years old and can be found growing at the Cathedral of Hildesheim in Germany. It's been documented since 815 AD, survived a bombing in 1945, and is believed by the locals to symbolise prosperity. Interestingly, the rose is one of only three flowers mentioned in the Bible (along with lilies and camphire).

If you're looking to take care of your own roses then mark your calendars for February. The experts say that this is the best time to cut them back to have the best flowers the next time they bloom. Just don't forget a hat and gloves as it's a very chilly month to be outside! And if you have a Rose Hip bush, you can harvest the fruit to make a jam that's packed with vitamin C. So not only are roses a very pretty addition to any garden they're good for you too!

And finally, here's a myth buster for you: There is no such thing as a blue rose in nature – nor a black one for that matter. The only way to get a blue rose is to put colouring in the water, and 'black' roses are actually a very dark red or purple.