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A Rose Is Not Just Another Flower

There is no doubt about it. A rose is one of the most beautiful of all God's creations. That being said, there is also a widely held belief that roses are difficult to grow. When in fact, they are actually quite easy to grow and far less demanding then most people think.

In addition to being beautiful, the rose is a very versatile flower. It is the flower most often used in wedding bouquets and delivered on Valentines day. A single rose can say "I love you" in a way that no other flower can do.

Most roses bloom all summer long. They love the sunshine and to be watered at root level. They do not like water on the flower itself. And to retaliate, the buds won't bloom and the full flowers will develop ugly spots. So no high-shooting sprinklers please.

A rose is beautiful all by itself or grouped with other flowers. Place a single rose in a bud vase with a sprig of fern or baby's breath in the guest or powder room to let your guests know how glad you are they are there.

Todays roses come in a large variety of colors, both solid and some mixed. There are white, yellow, various shades of pink and red, lavender and even roses which appear to be black.

The white rose is most often the flower of choice for weddings due to white being the color of purity. Yellow roses are good for impersonal gifts. Because a yellow rose is a symbol of friendship and trust, they are a good choice for friends, co-workers, secretaries and teachers. A pink or lavender rose is a good choice for family members such as mothers aunts, and grandmothers. While the red rose brings with it the connotation of a deeper love between a man and a woman.

If you have some rose bushes in your garden, you probably already know the importance of dead heading your roses in order to promote new growth. But wait, don't just toss those spent flowers into the recycle bin! Instead, strip the flower head of the remaining petals and place them in a colander. Leave the colander in the sun and "stir" the petals every few days. When completely dry, store the petals in a paper bag.

By the end of summer you should have enough petals to fill several bowls to place throughout the house. By mixing in a few drops of fragrant oil, you can continue to enjoy your roses several more months. In fact, your own home- grown potpourri will be well-accepted when received as Christmas gifts. Looking for more rose resources?

Liz Norman is an avid gardener and freelance writer. For further resources on roses, please visit Coming Up Roses.

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