The Hildesheim Rose

Hildesheim Rose

I heard it all the time that the rose is difficult to grow and yet the Hildesheim Rose is estimated at approximately 1,000 years old. It is said to be the oldest rosebush in the world.  It is the one climbing the wall of the apse of the Cathedral of Hildesheim in their courtyard at Hildesheim, Germany. It is a symbol of the city of Hildesheim and its prosperity. According to the legend, as long as the rose keeps blooming, Hildesheim will not decline. During World War II in 1945 allied bombers destroyed the cathedral yet the rose not only survived the bomb attacks but it grew new shoots just a few weeks later and soon was growing strong as ever.   It has withstood war, drought, pestilence and poison gas to bloom serenely every summer against the Cathedral wall.

There are several mythical explanations of the origin of this rose.  The most appealing story is that of Emperor Louis who became separated from his men while out hunting for deer.  Night was falling and the snow was blowing fiercely about him as he hung his crucifix on a thorn tree, knelt and prayed for help.  Worn out from his exertion he curled up in the snow and slept.  The next morning he awoke to find his crucifix hanging from a rose tree in full bloom.  And through the leafless forest he saw his companions walking toward him.  In thanksgiving he built a chapel on the spot.  The chapel grew in size until it became the great Cathedral of Hildesheim against which the rose still blooms.

Until next time. Stop and smell the roses.

Rosalinda, The Rose Lady

Author and Garden Writer

 

 

The Green Rose

Is there a pot of gold for us lovers of roses? For all the Irish in all of us and lovers of roses, let us think green, not a shamrock but a green rose. Not St. Patrick rose which only has a tint of green, but a real Green Rose.

 The Green Rose

 

At one of the meetings of the Charleston Lowcountry Rose Society, I won a unique rose called Viridiflora ‘Rosa Monstrosa’, otherwise known as Green Rose. Records say Green Rose has been in cultivation as early as 1743 and is a sport from Rosa Indica (The China Rose of England and the Daily Rose of America).

 

The Green Rose is a small plant that grows to 3’ tall and has few thorns. It can be grown in a pot, and is rarely out of “blooms”. The buds are small, oval, of soft bluish green color but unless you know what you’re looking for, it is hard to find the bud since the bush is totally green. The “blooms” are usually formed in clusters continually throughout the season and look wonderful. The petals of the bloom revert back to leaves (petals are modified leaves). The bloom does not have reproductive organs. As you would expect from an Old Garden Rose, Green Rose is fragrant too. It has a spicy fragrance. The Green Rose is an oddity and people either love it or hate it.

 

So for rose lovers, take pride. We have our own green to celebrate. It is a wonderful rose to use as a filler material in arrangements or as a landscape rose. But I’m sure some visitors to your garden will undoubtedly say “That’s not a rose.  You got to be kidding.” or worst yet, “That is the ugliest flower I’ve ever seen. Why do you give it space?” Because it is a great conversation piece to say the least. Plant it and you might like it. It is worth a try. Just as when you present your friend with a perfect red rose and they ask “Is that real?” I bet you this same person will tell you this rose is not real. But it is a real rose. The Green Rose is just that, a green rose.

 

“May the sun shine warm upon your face

And

May the rains fall softly upon your rose beds.”

 

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!!

 

Contrary to popular belief, roses are not that difficult to grow. Why do you think Roses have been around for millions of years?  All they need are food, water and sunlight.  Just like you and me. If you supply their basic needs, you’ll be rewarded with beautiful and fragrant flowers like the Green Rose. Unlike other plants that only bloom once a year like azaleas, roses bloom all season long. If you keep on pruning them, you’ll get another bloom in 5-6 weeks.

If you have any questions on roses, ask the Rose Gardening World group on Facebook, they will share their rose knowledge with you. Here is the link:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/128765990560518/

Happy Rose Gardening!!! 

Rose in Christianity

ROSE TIDBITS

rose window at notre dame

In the early days of Christianity, the rose fell out of favor because of its connections with pagan rituals and Roman orgies, but it later became associated with the Virgin Mary (who is often referred to as “The Rose of Heaven” or “The Mystical Rose”), and many saints, including Angelus, Cassilda, Elizabeth of Portugal, Rosalie, Rose of Lima, Rose of Viterbo, Thérèse of Lisieux, and Victoria.

The rose was depicted as a martyr’s crown on statues and in early paintings, while Christian mystics associated the five petals of a red rose with the five wounds of Christ. Later, beautiful stained-glass rose windows to adorn the great cathedrals of Europe.