Peace Roses
(Yes, there is more than one!)

Peace Roses are very famous. They have an honored place in history which they live up to as a strong, healthy representative of the Rosa family. 

No rose garden collection should be without at least one of these stalwarts. There are, indeed, several readily available to choose from.

The International World Peace Rose Garden in Sacramento, California, has many roses that allude to Peace.

Names such as Lasting Peace Rose, Love and Peace, Chicago Peace or just Peace are part of a wonderful rose garden made up of more than 650 roses with more than 153 varieties. (They also have a special "celebrity" rose section, a "test" garden, and a Vietnam memorial next to rose selections named after wars, honor, medals and veterans. Well worth a visit if you are in the area!)

The original Peace rose has been called the most successful and the most famous roses of all time, with sales of over a hundred million bushes! But it started life in Europe during World War two.

The French rose grower, Francis Meilland developed it in the years before 1939, near Lyon, France but with the advent of World War Two he sent cultivars to various places in the world, including the United States, for safe keeping. The original name at that time was "Madame A. Meilland" and the name "Peace" was not announced until April 1945: the end of the war.

Various places in the world have different names for this rose. In Germany, for example, it is known as "loria Dei". It was officially introduced in the United States by the Conard Pyle Company on the same day that Berlin was re-captured, and it was used at the first ever meeting of the United Nations.

Where the name "Peace" came from is a little hazy. It is said that Francis Meilland himself, wrote to Field Marshall Alan Brooke to ask if he would lend his name to the new rose but Brooke declined and suggested the word "Peace" instead, it being the same year as the official ending of World War Two.

The Peace rose is a light yellow (with slight pink undertones) hybrid tea rose that can grow up to six feet tall. It has large, leathery leaves and blooms that can reach almost 5 inches across when fully opened.

It doesn't have a strong fragrance, in fact the only fragrance occurs as the buds open, but it does score well with the American Rose Society (a score of 9 out of 10!) which suggests it's hardiness, ease of cultivation and a certain strength against disease, although it is susceptible to blackspot and powdery mildew in the wetter climates.

Peace roses also boast a "Peace Climber". This climbing hybrid tea will grow to fifteen feet. The blooms have a subtle perfume scent and high centers. The leaves are glossy green and the thorny stems tend to arch.

The blooms are typically creamy yellow but I am led to believe that often this color changes with soil conditions and weather. Don't over prune climbers, just cut back the laterals and remember the golden rule for all "Peace Rose", they do not like severe, drastic pruning.

Another member of the "Peace Roses" group is the Chicago Peace.

This is another hybrid tea but one that has glowing pink with yellow undertones in it's blooms: blooms that are very large and double. This rose has a light fragrance, grows to about five feet and is seen as a good cutting rose because generally there is one bloom per stem.

Unfortunately it is prone to blackspot unless you live in the drier regions, but it is a vigorous grower and it's dark leaves help it along as a good looking garden specimen. Incidentally the Scientific name is not "Chicago Peace" but Rosa Johnago and it was discovered as a sport of the original "Peace" by a man named Johston, who introduced the new off-spring in Chicago in 1962.

So there you go: three hybrid tea roses everyone should have in their collection. Peace, Climbing Peace and Chicago Peace. helping you make the best decisions with the most informed information about Peace Roses. 

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