The history of roses is very long and colorful. Over the years they have been symbols of love, beauty, war and politics. Fossils have been found, which indicate the rose has been around for approximately 35 million years. There are about 150 species of roses spread throughout the Northern Hemisphere, from Alaska to South Africa. 5,000 years ago garden cultivation of the rose began, which probably was in China. Roses were widely grown in the Middle East during the Roman period. Roses had several uses over the years. Many times it was used in celebrations as confetti. During that time roses were used for medicinal purposes. Roses were also used as a source of perfume. Large public roses gardens were established in the south of Rome by the Roman nobility. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the roses popularity depended on the gardening trends and fashion of the time.
During the fifteenth century two different groups were fighting for the control of England. The rose was used as a symbol of one side or another. The white rose was the symbol for York and the red rose was the symbol Lancaster. The conflict came to known as the “War of the Roses” because roses were used as symbols at the time.
In the seventeenth century, roses were in extremely high demand. Royalty considered using roses or rose water as a form of currency. They were however used as bartered for payment.
In the late eighteenth century cultivated roses were brought to Europe from China. The modern day rose can be traced back to this ancestry. The roses from China were repeat bloomers, which at that time made them interesting and unusual. Hybridizers were extremely interested, and they started working with native roses to look for the rose with hardiness and a long bloom season. The early efforts are of great interest to today’s gardeners.
Today once again, roses are basking in a renewed popularity, more specifically shrub roses, and the old garden roses. Gardeners have realized the shrub roses and the old garden roses will fit into a busy, hectic lifestyle better than the some of the other breeds, which require a lot of attention. Today’s gardener doesn’t not have the time to cater to a finicky rose, which will need constant attention. The other roses offer a beautiful floral quality; winter hardiness and they will blend in well with shrub borders or perennial gardens.
If you are trying to grow roses in Midwest gardens, there are some considerations, which will need to be taken in to consideration. You will need to get to know the plant selection in order to find the right one for you. There are a wide variety of classes available you can take, which will be helpful such as culture information, potential disease and insect problems. This will help you in your garden endeavor. This short guide to rose gardening should help you sort through some of the confusion about roses and persuade you to include some of these plants into your garden.