This year’s Rowan Rose Society Rose Show will be Saturday

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 19, 2017

By Sara Anthony Hill

Rowan Rose Society

I admit it: I like to read the horoscope in the newspaper. Just for fun, and only those that apply to my family.

I have no idea where these pearls of wisdom come from but it’s the last thing I read before I put the paper down. And after that, I think no more of such things.

Until today, as I am writing about the “Year of the Rose.”

The Rowan Rose Society will have its rose show from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday.

The Year of the Rose conjures up mystical thoughts of Zodiac signs and the Chinese lunar calendar, which shows that this is also the Year of the Rooster. No, there’s no connection between the two except in my mind, where I picture Big Red, my grandmother’s strutting, red rooster that ruled her backyard and would chase my sister, who had hair the color of one of my roses, Smokin’ Hot.

I went to the computer and found that the rose is the flower for Libra, those born between Sept. 23 and Oct. 22. If this is your sign, you have an eye for classic beauty and love to surround yourself with beautiful things and are most happy when you are with family and friends enjoying nature.

I’m positive that all members of the American Rose Society and the Rowan Rose Society were not born under this sign, but this description could apply to every member and every rose grower.

I have just learned that the National Garden Bureau announced the selection of the rose as perennial of the year. Each year, the bureau selects four plants in the categories of annuals, perennials, edible and bulbs.

The NGB was founded in 1920 in the aftermath of World War I to address what founder James H. Burdett saw as a lack of practical gardening knowledge.

The American Rose Society, which has more than 10,900 members, was formed in 1892 with the same goal, except promoting the culture and appreciation of the rose through education and assisting the public with the knowledge of gardening and growing roses.

The society is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year. It is the oldest single-plant horticultural society in the United States. The New Dawn rose, discovered in 1931, was the first plant to be patented under the U.S. Plant Patented Act. In 1986, President Ronald Reagan signed a proclamation certifying the rose as the U.S. National Floral Emblem.

As president of the Rowan Rose Society, I have had a wonderful experience working closely with passionate, dedicated and artistic people who appreciate the beauty of the rose. Some of our 40 members grow only a few roses, and others have gardens and formal gardens with as many as 800 roses.

God has blessed me and my garden of about 50 roses. Not only is it my place for solitude and meditation but it is also a greeting place for friends and neighbors who stop to chat and admire the roses.

They tell me I am called the “Rose Lady” in our neighborhood, and often people give directions — “you know, just beyond the rose garden on Eastwood.”

A doctor friend down the street said I should put a bucket out in front, charging 25 cents to stop and smell the roses. He said I would become wealthy. Actually, I have become rich with new friends and enjoy the beauty and peace that my roses bring.

Members of the Rowan Rose Society would welcome you at our meetings and show you how to become a rose lover and grower. For more information, go to our website,

The Rowan Rose Society Rose Show will be from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday at West End Plaza (the old Salisbury Mall in the JC Penney building).

You don’t need to be a member of the Rose Society to enter a rose in the competition. Just show up with your roses between 7 and 10 a.m. Judging begins at 10 a.m. The sale of exhibited roses will be at end of the show.

Bring a friend or two and let us share the joy of the rose.