Human Flower Project

Orrington, MAINE USA

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Princeton, MAINE USA

Friday, February 25, 2005

New Roses and the Zeitgeist

The 2005 roses have arrived at the supermarket.

You don’t hear people use the word Zeitgeist much anymore. It used to be tossed around to mean “the spirit of the times.” Maybe today’s times are too disjointed, or too dispirited to suggest a defining theme.

imageTuscan Sun, 2005

At my local H.E.B. supermarket, the roses have arrived in stacks. And yesterday, this story

introduced the most promising new varieties. “Tuscan Sun, Jackson & Perkins’s Floribunda of the Year, bears generous clusters of apricot buds opening to high-centered, bronze-blushed blossoms that age to coppery pink.” And for more strictly pink-rose people, there’s “Aromatherapy” whose blossoms “exude their sweet fragrance for days in long-lasting arrangements.”

Zeitgeist or no, these are 2005 rose names to be sure.

imageProsperity, 1919

The San Jose Heritage Rose Garden website includes a terrific year by year listing of the hybrid teas introduced over the past 100+plus years. 1919 featured “Prosperity,” and during the Roaring Twenties, “Pink Pearl” and “Shot Silk” came on the market.  By 1930, a more serious mood named roses “President Herbert Hoover,” “Vanguard” and “Thomas A. Edison.” There was “V for Victory” in 1941.

imagePresident Herbert Hoover, 1930

Looking for time-bound roses, my favorites debuted in the 1950s: “Chrysler Imperial,” “Flamingo,” “Grace de Monaco,” and “Hamburger Phoenix.” Does anyone if the Hamburger Phoenix rose is brown?

The Puff era brought us “Magic Dragon” and “Pied Piper” both in 1969. “Seiko” appeared in 1975, and “Hotline” in 1981.”

To know the spirit of an age, why not begin with its “new” roses, a good idea whether there’s a Zeigeist or not.

Posted by Julie on 02/25 at 02:25 PM
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