I paid a visit to the lovely rose park at Boller castle the other day . The roses are beautiful - of course they are - I love roses. They have a fantastic history and origin, and the scent of roses is the most beautiful scent in the world!
The name of the rose in the first picture is "Louise Odier" - and it is a socalled Bourbon rose.
The Bourbon rose derives from a small island close to Madagaskar, Ile de Bourbon (Its name today is Reunion).
It was a tradition upon this small island to plant roses as a hedge between the fields. The roses used for this purpose were the damascene rose "Rose des Quatre Saisons" and "Parson's Pink China". The China rose came to Ile de Bourbon in the end of the 1700s from China via India.
The French botanist Breon found in 1817 a plant with very beautiful flowers in one of the hedges upon the island, where the two rose species grew. He moved the rose back to his private garden and sent seeds to the royal gardner in Paris. From these seeds came the rose "Rosier de I'lle de Bourbon". It was a very vigorous plant with shiny pink half-filled flowers. From the damascene roses it had inherited a fine scent and its blooming in autumn.
The Bourbon roses were used for new crossing experiments by the European rose breeders - and in the 1800s several new Bourbon roses arrived.
One of the most famous Bourbon roses is "Souvenir de la Malmaison". The name is a memory of empress Josephine, who laid out a magnificent garden at the castle Malmaison outside Paris.
Below: various roses from the garden:
photo Boller Castle, 19 July 2014. grethe bachmann