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12 Days of Christmas: A Rosy Outlook

Things are looking rosy here at Floramont!

Pink Knock Out Rose

Several articles in this journal are centered upon roses. For example, Roses of France highlights the renowned Meilland rose growers while the Rose Oil: Huile de Rose article features a French-to-English translation of a recipe from Québec's Nouvelle Cuisinière Canadienne. However, a late autumn walk in the garden reminded me of this short and sweet article from last year: Lessons from a Rose. During my recent walk, there was one thriving bloom in the garden, the ever-present 'Knock-Out' Rose. This bloom reminded me of how roses can stop you in your tracks, especially on a cool and bleak day.

Seeing the 'Knock-Out' Rose actually knocked me back to my own senses, too. It reminded me of how so many of us love roses, and how I have considered devoting more time to these lovely flowers. I could never abandon irises and daffodils and such, but the roses are calling right now. Particularly, French roses are calling. It makes sense. Cultivating French roots has been a big part of Floramont. Taking it a step further, we can look at the French roots of our favorite roses. For example, this 'Knock Out' Rose boasts French ancestry, all thanks to a "sport" of 'Safrano' which was found by a clergyman in North Carolina named Rev. James M. Sprunt. The original 'Safrano' was bred in France in 1837 by Jean-Fréderic Sourdeau de Beauregard. Does it get any more French than that? Well, there are even more French names to be found within the history of the ever-popular 'Knock Out' Rose.

You may be surprised by the number of French roses lurking in the family trees of other All-American standouts. Christmas is on the horizon, so why not celebrate the Twelve Days of Christmas with roses? Beginning on December 25th, we will feature the French roots of one rose a day, giving us a dozen roses by the time we reach January 5th of 2024!


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