Roses are red

I don’t like roses.

A little like my disinterest in orchids, I rarely ooh and ahh for a rose. Especially the double bloom or full multi-petaled roses. Long stemmed, they are too top heavy, have too many petals and are often odourless.

So allow me to re-qualify my statement. I don’t like the typical store bought roses, those that seem intent on producing a visual mass colour effect only.


However, my excitement grows every year in the early summer when there is a small exhibit of old fashioned roses in the gardens of the Palais royal.

(Here is a resource page explaining rose types/shapes).

While the musky Damascus roses or Centifolia Rosa are many petaled, they have a more delicate shape than the compact aberrations we are so used to seeing at the florist. They appear to dance on their stems with a certain grace.  And the fragrances are otherworldly. Should I close my eyes while I inhale –and it is almost an automatic response– I find myself transported immediately to some faraway nameless place. A memory…

Here is a fabulous 4-part radio documentary about the smell of roses.

French language only I’m afraid.

For those who do celebrate…Happy Valentine’s Day (these are flat single petaled roses, reminiscent of clematatis)