All About Roses

Roses will always win hands down for being the most popular flower ever! The queen of all flowers, the ‘rose’ is widely fancied for its colours, form, and size with petals that are soft and silky.

Roses from
The Flora.

Rose comes from the Latin word “Rosa” and is a flowering shrub, belonging to the family of plants called Rosaceae. With colours ranging from dark reds, rich pinks, and warm yellows to the lighter blues, lilacs and whites, they offer something for everyone. The enchanting flowers also cast a spell with their sizes that can be as enormous as 7 inches in diameter for hybrid ones to 0.5 inch for the miniature ones. There are over 300 species of roses and thousands of cultivars and hybrids, grown for their beauty and demand in the commercial cut flower and commercial perfumery industry. For the cut flower market, the flowers are harvested and cut when in the bud stage. These are refrigerated until ready for sale.

Essentially, roses are grown universally across the globe with most species being native to Asia followed by Europe, North America and North western Africa. Roses typically grow well in warm climates and flower in the summer months but some do equally well even in the hot tropical climates, while others thrive in winters with temperatures dropping to as low as -50 degree Fahrenheit.

What are the different types of roses?

These fragrant blooms can be broadly classified into three types.

Wild roses are often called as species roses, they have 5 -petaled flowers with colourful hips, are widely hybridized and they usually bloom once in summer.

Old garden roses boast of delicate beauty and wonderful fragrance. They are generally winter-hardy, also known as antique roses and are the preferred ones for lawns and home gardens. China roses, tea roses, damask, bourbon and moss roses are some of its variants.

Modern garden roses are the ones identified after 1867. These roses have rich and vibrant colours and are a result of crossbreeding the hybrid tea with a particular variety of primrose. These are adored by florists and gardeners. Grandiflora, Floribunda, hybrid tea roses are some of the types of modern roses.

What is the socio-cultural significance of a rose flower?

The strong presence that the flower ‘rose’ commands, is bound to invoke cultural significance throughout human history. In ancient Greece, rose is closely associated with the Goddess Aphrodite and her love for Adonis. Here, it symbolizes immortal love. Romans also believed that roses signify ultimate secrecy and used to hang them over meeting tables to say that anything mentioned at the table was forbidden to be repeated anywhere else. Simultaneously, in Christian lore, roses are symbols of sacrifice as a rose bush was supposed to have grown at the site of Christ’s death.

The beauty of this flower expresses promise, hope, and new beginnings. It is contrasted by thorns symbolizing defense, loss, and thoughtlessness. Thus in tarot, it is considered as a symbol of balance.
Some symbolic meaning associated with rose are love, passion, sensuality, beauty, faith, devotion, honour, wisdom, sympathy and timelessness. Roses thus have abundant symbolic representations based on colour, number of petals, number of blooms gifted and also whether or not it is ‘open’. Finally, it is a personal choice and in knowing what works for you!

What do different colours of roses mean?

We all know that gifting a rose shows deep appreciation for the recipient. Traditionally, the colours of roses signify an underlying meaning and it becomes imperative for us to understand the same so that our genuine feelings are conveyed.

  • Red – Love, passion, romance
  • Orange – Energy, enthusiasm, desire, and excitement
  • Yellow – Friendship, happiness
  • Pink – Admiration, gentleness, grace
  • Peach – Deep gratitude and appreciation
  • Cream – Charm and thoughtfulness
  • White – New beginnings, innocence, charm, purity

When to give roses as gifts?

Is there any other flower that offers sensory abundance more than a rose? It is the most ideal gift for many occasions.

  • Valentine’s day, engagement, anniversaries to show one’s ultimate love for the other person
  • Bridal bouquets with white roses mark the new bond
  • Celebrating Mother’s day and showing appreciation for all that our mothers do!
  • Wishing someone well to say ‘Get well soon’ and expressing empathy

 How many roses should I give?

The number of roses in a bunch or a bouquet have specific significance too!

Here's a list to help you convey your special message!

  • 1 - Love at first sight, or years later "you are still the one."
  • 2 - Mutual love and affection . . . so you may owe him/her two roses!
  • 3 - The traditional three-month anniversary gift also simply means "I love you."
  • 6 - Infatuation, or "I want to be yours."
  • 9 - A big jump up from six, nine roses symbolizes eternal love or "I want to be with you forever."
  • 10 - A perfect 10 means "You are perfect."
  • 12 - Desire or, “Be mine”
  • 13 - You'll be friends forever, or it means you have a secret admirer.
  • 15 - Apology, or "I'm sorry."
  • 20 - “I'm sincere towards you/ Believe me”
  • 21 - Commitment, or "I am dedicated to you"
  • 24 - "You're always on my mind/I'm yours."
  • 25 - Wishing someone happiness, or “Congratulations."
  • 30 - Faith
  • 36 - "I'm head over heels in love/I will remember our romantic moments."
  • 40 - "My love for you is genuine."
  • 50 - Signify a love that has ripened well, and has never been regretted/ “I love you unconditionally”
  • 100 - “I’m totally devoted to you / Signify a happy union of two loving souls till death or till a hundred years”
  • 101 - “You are my one and only”
  • 108 - “Will you marry me?”

How to arrange roses and pair them with other flowers?

Roses are beautiful enough to stand alone in any arrangement. A bunch of roses in a single colour look elegant and classy! Take a dozen red roses for example and they look spectacular and romantic without adding anything at all.  Presentation is the key, when arranging a single variety of flowers. Either hold them all together or cut the stems at varying lengths and "build" an arrangement from the bottom up, letting the highest roses stand tall and coaxing the shortest ones over the side of the container.

However, adding other flowers to the bouquet lends colour and textural contrast to the arrangement.

Roses are incredibly versatile in terms of colour and sizes, and can be tried in various floral combinations, being paired with-

  • Carnations
  • Lilies
  • Hydrangeas
  • Dahlias
  • Peonies
  • Orchids
  • Tube roses
  • Fillers like baby's breath and wax flowers

How to care for roses at home?

Whether it is a single bloom or a ravishing bouquet, we all want our roses to stay fresh for as long as possible. You will be surprised to know that roses are one of the hardier flowers and can stay for one long week in water, after being cut and perhaps even longer with certain flower care tricks.

  • Always cut the stem under water at an angle with a sharp knife or a pruner. Cutting at an angle increases the surface area, thus allowing better water intake.
  • Place the stem in lukewarm water.
  • Re-trim the stems after every 2 days. Keep changing water in the vase.
  • To prevent bacterial growth, remove all leaves below the water line. Flowers like roses have guard petals which are the two or more outermost petals of the flower. Removing these ensure that the flowers open up fully.
  • After filling the vase with clean, room temperature water, add in a packet of flower food.
  • Ensure that your pretty arrangement is not exposed to direct sunlight or is kept close to any heat generating appliance.
  • After some research, two tried and tested methods that can help you increase the longevity of roses are
    - Put your bouquet inside the fridge every night before bed. (Typically 8hrs per night) Cooler temperatures definitely help the flowers remain fresh for a longer duration.
    - Pour ¼ cup of soda inside the vase with fresh flowers. The sugar in the soda is said to make the blooms remain fresh and also gives out a sweet fragrance.

How to preserve roses?

Roses signify timelessness but they cannot be kept fresh forever! So, how can you preserve the roses that you got from that someone special? Air-drying them is an option that'll help you age the blooms naturally while they are still intact.

  • Take the leaves off the stems.
  • Tie the flowers into small bundles of 3 or 4 using a string or rubber band.
  • Hang them upside down in a well-ventilated room away from direct sunlight.
  • Air-drying helps retain the shape of the flower.

Some fun facts:

  • The world’s largest rose was pink in colour and measured 33inches in diameter.
  • There is no black rose. What seems black to the eye is actually dark red- crimson in colour.
  • The rose also grows into a fruit. The fruit is called a rose hip.
  • The rose hip of certain varieties of roses is full of vitamin C. They are used in making jams, jelly and marmalade.
  • The buds of the tiniest roses are the size of a grain of rice.
  • The rose is one among the only three flowers mentioned in the bible.
  • Roses can survive for an extremely long period of time and the thousand-year-old one grows on the wall of Hildesheim Cathedral in Germany.
  • The famous Cleopatra of Egypt is believed to have covered the floors of her palace room with roses before Mark Antony visited her.
  • Roses are a favourite when it comes to literature and songs. Around 4000 songs are dedicated to roses.
  • In folk medicine, roses are used to relieve stomach pain and significantly contribute to the cosmetics industry.
  • Ancient Egyptians considered roses to be sacred.
  • Roses have even enjoyed being used as a currency by the royalty in the 1600s

Roses at “The Flora”

“The Flora” brings to you the finest quality roses in bunches of ten and in multiple colours. These are sourced from our own farms and are grown organically. Available as cut flowers throughout the year, you can either subscribe to us or order a bunch.

Falling in love with roses? We got you! 
You can get a monthly subscription or order a bunch.



Photo by Paweł Czerwiński 
Photo by Annie Spratt 
Photo by rawpixel 
Photo by Matthew T Rader 
Photo by Alesia Kazantceva 
Photo by Les Fleurs