10 Rose Facts for Valentines Day
They're part of a big family.
There are about of hundred species of roses, which vary widely in color, shape, and climate preference — tea roses, however, are the most common.
Don't call them "thorns."
If you want to get technical (and, of course, we do), roses have prickles, not thorns. Botanically speaking, thorns have deeper roots in a plants' stem, but prickles attach at the surface and are more easily removed.
We really love them.
According to a survey of 30,000 gardeners, roses are by far the most popular flower in the United States.
They're stars in many states.
Four states have chosen the rose as their official flower: Georgia, Iowa, New York, and North Dakota. Plus, the rose has been the United States' national flower since 1986.
Our first president was a fan.
George Washington was the first rose breeder in the United States, and he even named a variety after his mother, Mary Washington.
There are so many hidden meanings.
According to Victorian flower dictionaries, the a rose's color determines its meaning. Red roses signify "love," pink ones mean "grace," peach signals "modesty," and and orange implies "fascination."
They have deep historical roots.
According to the Guinness Book of World Records, roses are the oldest species of plant to be grown as decoration. Ancient Romans cultivated the flowers to decorate buildings and furniture, and even laid rose petal carpets.
And can live a very long time.
It's said that the oldest rose bush in the world grows on the Hildesheim Cathedral in Germany. It's believed to be over 1000 years old.
And grow very, very tall.
The tallest rose bush on record is in Morristown, New Jersey, and grew to be over 18 feet tall. The largest rose bouquet ever had 156,940 blooms (but there's no documentation on whether the world's largest dining table could use it as a centerpiece).
February is for rose lovers.
About 100 million roses are grown for Valentine's Day each year. And florists spend the months leading up to the big day worrying about the bad weather that might ruin crops around the world.