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There are over 150 types of roses, from hybrid bush roses, to climbers, groundcover or carpet roses, old fashioned doubles, and so many more. With a history dating back some 40 million years (yes, fossils verify this!) Roses are some of the oldest flowers we know. They've cropped up in art and literature going back as far as, well, art & literature. In fact, the oldest living rose is currently over 1000 years old!
Roses petals are edible and can sometimes be used to add colour & interest to salads and other dishes. Rose water, made from soaking petals, is often added to jellies or jams or used as a flavoring in asian dishes.
Roses also grow a berry-shaped fruit called rose hips. The fruit can be orange, red, dark purple, or even black. Rose hips are full of Vitamin C and can be dried to create rosehip tea.
Rose oil, produced by extracting the oil from flowers, has been used in many women's perfumes for hundreds of years. However, you need a massive two thousand roses to extract just one gram of oil! You can also extract rose oil from rose hips and this is now being used for skin care due to the high Omega 6 and Vitamin A content - however, rose hip oil doesn't smell like roses, instead being more earthy.
Of course we all associate the traditional Valentine's Day red rose with love and romance, but there are lots of other rose colours all with their own specific meanings.
Pink roses are for grace and elegance while the bright yellow rose represents friendship and jubilation. White roses represent sympathy and are often seen at funerals, yet white roses can also represent purity, spirituality, and innocence. Orange roses are for enthusiasm and can be used for congratulations and celebration.
Click the link to the article below for more information on the meaning of rose colours.
President Ronald Reagan declared the rose the national flower of the U.S in 1986, which he proclaimed rather fittingly from the White House Rose Garden.
Different varieties of roses are also the state flowers of Georgia, Iowa, New York, North Dakota, and Washington, D.C. There are about 20 species of wild rose native to the USA.
England has had the rose as their official flower much longer than the US of course, dating back to the War of the Roses in the 1400's. During this time the royal House of Lancaster was represented by the Red Rose, while their opposition House of York was represented by the white rose. King Henry VII adopted the Tudor Rose which is a combination of both, symbolising peace between the two houses.
Famous rose breeder David Austin spent 15 years and $5 million breeding a rare apricot-hued rose variety that he called Juliet.
The David Austin Juliet rose sold for $15.8 million in 2006, making it the world's most expensive rose cultivar, and one of the top 6 most expensive flowers ever sold.
This beautiful rose debuted at the Chelsea Flower Show and won 25 gold medals, so it's an award-winning Rose also.
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