Rose

The quintessential English flower

The beautiful rose is a classic amongst flowers. Its petals are adored throughout the world, but it's especially dear to the English, who picked the rose to be their national flower. Every colour variation has its own special meaning, so whatever the occasion, there’s always a suitable stem.

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Colours and shapes

When it comes to romance and the rose, there's an abundance of different ways to communicate your love. The flowers come in classic red, white, yellow and pink, plus purple, orange or green, bicoloured or multicoloured varieties. They grow both large and small, and with short or long stems. 

Although it is a classic flower, the rose never feels worn out. Every year, dozens of new varieties are created by breeders, so the there's always an exciting new flower to place in a bouquet. Keep an eye out for unusual-looking grassheart roses, whose stem pushes through the flower to create a grass-green centre.   

Symbolism

The heart-shaped petals represent love and trust, while thorns remind us that love can also hurt. The gift of a dozen red roses may be the traditional way to show your love, but every shade has its own special meaning. Add some of the following roses to a bouquet to communicate your message, even when words may fail you.

  • Red is for love and respect.

  • White roses mean true love, purity, dignity and chastity.

  • Pinks stand for happiness, gratitude and virtue.

  • Orange roses describe longing, appreciation and sympathy.

  • Yellow roses signify intimate friendship and solidarity.

Combinations of colours and pairings with other flowers also create new meanings. For example, white and pink roses express the wish to stay together forever. The presence of roses in a bouquet symbolises gratitude, and a single rose placed in a large bouquet lets the receiver know that they're The One.

Origin

The Ancient Greeks, Romans and Egyptians discovered the beauty of the romantic rose, but the flower didn't achieve its current popularity in Western Europe until the 16th century. Since then, however, this timeless flower has never gone out of style.