July 28, 2012

Red Roses

I dislike red roses.  I don't mean the David Austin-y, old fashioned red roses, but the classic long-stemmed, give-a-dozen-for-Valentine's Day kind of red roses.

After my mother died, someone, I don't know whom, decided it would make a nice keepsake (if that word is appropriate for this situation, and I don't think it is...) if the red roses on her casket spray were dried, compressed into beads and then made into rosaries for the family.  

Many moves, many years, and many memories later, I can't tell you where even one of these 'keepsakes' might be, though surely a sibling has one in a drawer or chest somewhere.  I can tell you that I don't have to put my hands on one to remember their scent and how sweetly sickening that scent was to me.

Over the years, I have come to terms with many things, and one of them is my issue with that classic florist's rose.  While I still greatly dislike long-stemmed red roses... and their scent is not my favorite,  
I have developed a liking for other shades of these blooms. I have come to appreciate...

their velvety sophistication,

their emotional complexity,

their maturity,

the sheer indulgence and luxury of them.  No innocence in THEIR manner or pedigree, no sirree!

What you see, is decidedly what you get.  Because of this sultry quality,

I don't like to mix them with anything else, allowing them to speak for themselves in all of their vain glory.

I especially like this deep fiery orange color and the way the intensity changes as the petals swirl around one another.

I have a mossy six inch cache pot that looks beautiful with roses.  I typically cut their long stems short (I don't like the rigidity of the long stems)...to just above the rim of the pot.

A ball of chicken wire molded to the size of the interior works perfectly to hold the
snipped flowers in place

as I work to create a soft mounded half sphere of orange...tucking in some of the green leaves here and there for contrast and a little softness.

The end result is quite lovely, I think.  All from a mere $8.99 bouquet of roses I treated myself to at Whole Foods yesterday.

My older sister...and my mother... seem quite pleased.


  1. Oh, my goodness, my mom and I do not buy red roses. She was surprised that last Spring I purchased a David Austin red (which really has a touch of magenta in the right light). I explained to her that Henri Fantin-Latour added a red rose here and there to his painting. LaTour is the ultimate of rose painters (surely many would agree), and one of the painters that so inspire my work. So, red roses, here I come.

  2. What a wonderful explanation! Every once in a while,even in the garden, with...as you say a touch
    of magenta...the color makes everything else 'pop'.


Please leave a comment! I love to hear from you!