Gallica Roses - The Ancient and Beautiful

by vtgard on Flickr
by vtgard on Flickr

A Rose By Any Other Name......

Roses are probably the most commonly recognized flower in the world.  In fact, entire holidays are bathed with roses.  You can find rose lotion, rose bath bubbles, rose perfume, and even rose air fresheners.  The smell of a rose is inviting and addicting.  It is desired the world over and represents love at its deepest.

When you receive a rose bouquet you more than likely receive what is known as the tea rose.  Today that is the most familiar to us, but centuries ago a rose would be what we now call "Old Garden Roses" that looks a little different.

by amandabhslater on flickr
by amandabhslater on flickr
by Orfano Mondo on flickr
by Orfano Mondo on flickr
by amandabhslater on flickr
by amandabhslater on flickr
by nomad123 on flickr
by nomad123 on flickr
by nomad123 on flickr
by nomad123 on flickr
by nomad123 on flickr
by nomad123 on flickr
by kcm76 on flickr
by kcm76 on flickr
by koizumi on flickr
by koizumi on flickr

A Rose to Stand the Test of Time

Around the seventh century in Persia the first of what we now know as Gallica Roses were cultivated.  These beauties enhanced the exotic gardens, and the fragrances filled the land. 

During the Crusades (twelfth and thirteenth centuries), the knights from Europe encountered this beautiful bush and took samples back home where they began to flourish and spread throughout the land.  The deciduous shrub became a common sight in the gardens and the English took it even as symbols of the family names.

The Gallica Rose has been placed under the category of "Old Garden Roses".  That represents the roses that existed prior to 1867 when the first of the modern tea roses were cultivated.  They have a long strong history of being commonly used in household items.  Some homes used the petals in their pillows to give their dreams sweetness.  It was used as hair adornments and even in cosmetics.  Many a cook used the rose petals in their culinary efforts and it was not uncommon to brew the petals and/or rose  hips in a tea.  Rose tea is great for colds and sore throats.  Monks even used them in making rosary beads.

You'll find this flower called "The French Rose", "The Hungarian Rose", "The Apothecary Rose", and "The Rose of Lancaster".  The Lancaster name came from the House of Lancaster in England who adopted this flower as part of it's coat of arms.  This "red" rose stood out on all their arraignment.  But another family, York, had the white rose as their symbol.  The two families feuded for years over the English throne.  This bloody period was known as "The War of the Roses".  It was the Lancaster line that won out through Henry Tudor who then took both roses and combined them for the royal symbols.

If you are interested in adding these flowers to your garden, you will not be disappointed.  They are extremely easy to grow and love sunlight.  The one sad thing about them is that they only bloom once in late spring and early summer.  But with careful pruning after blooming, you'll have a bountiful crop next year again.

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Comments 1 comment

Paradise7 7 years ago

Oh, lovely. Thank you!

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