The rose, both in sight and smell, is one of the most recognizable flowers in the world. It’s been used to symbolize an amazing variety of things over the centuries. War, peace, family, tribulation, hope and renewal, for instance. The roses soft, velvety petals have been the texture to match for silky skin and fabric, while the rose scent has been a base for perfumes, candles and any number of other items. Local florists usually have a wide variety of rose choices on hand, as they are popular flowers for friends, family and, of course, lovers.


Over 100 species of roses exist today, varying in size and behavior. Some grow on bushes, while others can be seen climbing a trellis or the side of a building. Scientifically, they are in the Rosaceae family, of the Rosa genus–but most people are more interested in the color, size and smell of the blooms. Roses are considered ornamental flowers; their blooms vary from very small, as in the tea rose, to large, blowsy and spreading petals that make a statement. Various hybrids of the flower introduce new colors and shapes to the species, leaving florists and gift-senders rarely at a loss for a wonderful choice for their bouquets.

An Instantly Recognizable Scent

When you hold many varieties of roses close to your nose and breathe in, even with your eyes closed, you will instantly know that scent. Crush the petals of the rose, however, rubbing them in your fingers, and that scent is magnified. This, essentially, is what people have done through the centuries, using various methods to extract the oils and essence of the rose. Attar of roses is a substance made from rose and other essential oils, and is the basis for many projects, including perfumes. Rose water is another product of the distillation of the rose petals, and has been used in the making of cosmetics and various food dishes. Even the rose hips, a part of the rose that sits below the blooms, have been used to make teas and jellies, and has been credited with many health benefits.

More than anything, however, in modern life roses speak the language of love and admiration. Florists in our marketplace can no doubt tell many tales of lover’s bouquets winging their way to spouses, entertainers and intendeds of many sorts. Ask our local florists about the various meanings associated with different colors and types of roses–you may be surprised at all you can say in the language of flowers, with one simple bloom. +