Throughout human history, few flowers have held such sway over the hearts and imaginations as the rose. Known as the "Queen of Flowers," the rose is an ancient flower whose existence predates that of human beings. Associated with such lofty sentiments and ideas as romance, love, passion, devotion and purity, the rose flower also possesses distinct qualities and attributes that set it apart from other blooms, and keep its worldwide coterie of fans enchanted.
Assortment of Colors
Roses come in virtually every color of the rainbow, with new hues being perpetually developed. From the rich and mysterious, nearly black hue of Black Magic roses, to the cool, silvery, lavender shade of Sterling Silver roses, the vast assortment of colors in which roses are available sets them apart from all other flowers. Their abundance of colors means roses can suit most tastes, express a variety of moods and feelings, and complement or harmonize easily with other flowers in the garden.
Variety of Scents
Roses are known in part for their heavenly fragrance. Interestingly, there are as many different types of rose scents as there are colors of roses. Some rose flowers smell of honey, while others smell of lemons. Some, particularly those known as China roses or tea roses, smell of tea. So, while all fragrant roses may be said to have a "rose-like" scent, this scent has subtle nuances and varies from one rose to another, making these flowers fascinating to the rosarians of the world.
Shape and Configuration of Petals
Another distinct quality of roses separate from other flowers is the varied shapes and configurations of their petals. Some roses, such as moss roses, have small, round petals while others, like hybrid teas, have long, elegant, ovoid ones. Likewise, some roses, such as wild roses, have as few as five petals, while others, such as bourbon roses, can have hundreds of densely-packed petals. The petals of wild roses are fairly flat, but the petals of tea roses curl slightly at the tips.
Mulitude of Uses
Another attribute for roses is its multitude of uses. In addition to adding color and fragrance to the garden, rose flowers are among the most popular of all cut flowers, and are frequently featured in floral arrangements of all styles and sizes. Rose flowers are edible if they are free from pesticides, herbicides, and other chemicals; they are used in cooking in baking to decorate and flavor foods. The petals from rose flowers may be boiled to a pulp and shaped into rose petal beads, which were commonly used to make rosaries centuries ago. When dried, rose flowers and their petals make pleasantly scented potpourri.