The Commemorative Power Of Roses

Some people think roses are just beautiful flowers, which they are, but they are so much more than that.

It is not just that roses can symbolise England, or even the counties of Lancashire (red) and Yorkshire (white), but they can also be extraordinarily evocative, not least at times like anniversaries, birthdays and special memories. That’s why luxury roses make a gift with more depth of meaning than your average flower.

A good example of this is the way a rose has been developed as a tribute to the late Queen. The Queen Elizabeth Rose was originally bred in 1948, but gained prominence in its association with her coronation in 1953. This pink flower with 38-40 petals was added to the Rose Hall of Fame in 1979.

Not surprisingly, this has made it a popular rose in 2022, firstly for the Platinum Jubilee and then after her majesty passed away. No surprise, then, that the Gazette Series recently published instructions on how people could plant their own now and grow them over the coming year. 

That is not the only example of the rose being used commemoratively. The Mary Rose is not a breed of rose named after Queen Mary, but the flagship of Henry VIIIs fleet that sank to the bottom of the Solent 437 years ago. It was raised in a paintaking operation 4 years ago and, as the Evening Standard reported, the anniversary was marked by the scattering of hundreds of roses at the site.

Some 500 roses were scattered at the site, matching the number of divers who went down to the wreck before it was raised. 

The name may have a lot to do with the act, but the fact is that there is something special about the use of roses in this fashion.  What special memory or occasion will you choose them for?