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THE FRENCH ROSE.

(ROSA GALLICA.)

The French Rose (Rosa gallica of botanists) is an inhabitant of the continent of Europe, growing abundantly in the hedges of France and Italy. In the " Floræ Romanæ " of Sebastiani, published at Rome in 1818, this rose, Rosa sempervirens, and Rosa canina, are said to be the only roses growing naturally in the Papal States. It was one of the earliest roses introduced to our gardens. 1596 is given by botanists as the date of its introduction; and, owing to its bearing seed freely, it has been the parent of an immense number of varieties, many of the earlier sorts being more remarkable for their expressive French appellations than for any great dissimilarity in their habits or colours. The Semi-double Red Rose, grown in Surrey for the druggists, is of this family, and a very slight remove from the original species, which is of the same colour, with but one range of petals, or single. All the roses of this group are remarkable for their compact and upright growth; many for the multiplicity of their petals, and tendency to produce variegated flowers. Some of these spotted and striped roses are very singular and beautiful. The formation of the flower, in

many of the superior modern varieties of Rosa gallica is very regular; so that most probably this family will ultimately be the favourite of those florists who show roses for prizes in the manner that dahlias are now exhibited; that is, as full-blown flowers, one flower on a stem; for they bear carriage better, when fully expanded, than any other roses. In France, this is called the "Provins Rose;" and some varieties of it are classed in a separate division, as "Agathe Roses." These have curled foliage, and palecoloured compact flowers, remarkable for their crowded petals. That very old striped rose, sometimes improperly called the "York and Lancaster" Rose, seems to have been one of the first variations of Rosa gallica, as it is mentioned by most of our early writers on gardening. This is properly" Rosa mundi:" the true York and Lancaster Rose is a Damask Rose.

To describe a selection of these roses is no easy task, as the plants differ so little in their habits; and their flowers, though very dissimilar in appearance, yet offer so few prominent descriptive characteristics. Some of the new varieties lately introduced, though much prized in France, have not yet bloomed well here: the change of climate seems to have affected them. A' Fleurs à Feuilles Marbrées, as the name implies, has its leaves and flowers marbled or stained, as are also its branches. This rose is

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so double, that it has as much the appearance of a ranunculus as a rose, and in fine weather is very beautiful; but wet soon disfigures it. Aglae Adanson is a fine marbled rose, something like the above in colour, but with much larger flowers, which are double, finely formed, and open freely. Anarelle is a large cupped and finely shaped rose; its outer petals pale lilac; its centre of a deep purplish rose, distinct and good. Aspasie is one of the most delicate and beautiful roses known; for its form is quite perfect, a little inclining to be globular, like some of the hybrid China roses. Aurélie is much like the last in colour and form, but is delicately spotted with white. Assemblage des Beautés ! is not quite full enough of petals, but deserves its name, for its varied and finely coloured crimson and scarlet flowers, on one stem, are always admired. Belle Herminie is a semidouble spotted rose, remarkable as being the parent of most of the spotted and marbled varieties. Berlèse is a fine rose, with a dark purple ground spotted with crimson, and before it is faded by the mid-day sun it is very beautiful. Belle de Fontenay is now a well known variety, but quite unique, as its margined flowers are distinct and characteristic.

Bizarre Marbré is a fine marbled rose, very double and well shaped, of a bright rose-colour beautifully shaded. Comte Walsh has been

described in the catalogue on the faith of a French florist, before it bloomed here; it has not proved true to its description, as it is not margined, but it is a first-rate show rose.*

Camaieu is one of the most distinct striped roses known. Its flowers are rather small, and sometimes not of a good form; still it is a very pretty rose. Comte de Murinais is a large flattish rose, of a slate-coloured ground, spotted with rose colour; a very distinct and good variety. Cramoisie Picotée is a distinct and curious slate-coloured spotted rose, not so pretty and brilliant as the Old Picotée; its spots have a reddish brown tinge. Delille is a new rose, very prettily spotted on a purple ground. Like most of the roses of this colour it is only to be seen in perfection in the morning, if the weather is sultry; but in cloudy weather it will retain its beauty the entire day. Duc de Trévise is a most beautiful rose, of first-rate form for a show rose, and of a robust and distinct habit. d'Orléans is also a fine and brilliant rose, large, finely cupped, and distinctly spotted with white, and of the most robust and vigorous habit. E'clatante is a rose that may be distinguished. in a group, however crowded, as it is so ex

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*This term is applied to those varieties that produce very double and perfect flowers, fit to be exhibited singly, as dahlias are.

tremely bright; it perhaps ought not to be called scarlet, yet no other term so well describes its colour.

E'clat des Roses is a very double and large rose, of the most perfect form for a show rose. It seldom produces deformed or ill-shaped flowers; the plant is also of the most vigorous habit. To Fanny Parissot this description may also be applied, only that its colour is much more delicate. Fanny Bias is a name also given to this rose. Fanny Elsler is a new and pretty spotted rose, but it has not yet bloomed here in perfection. Fleur d'Amour is one of the most vivid-coloured roses in this group, much like Assemblage des Beautés, but more double. Grandissima is a most robust-growing and very large rose, likely to prove a show rose of first-rate excellence. Hortense Beauharnois is a fine and large rose, very delicately and slightly spotted with white. Iphigénie is also a good spotted variety, but, like the preceding, perhaps too delicately so to be called a variegated rose. The King of Rome, or Théodore de Corse (for they are one and the same), is a beautiful double and compact rose, so exactly like a double ranunculus, that it might almost be mistaken for one. Leopold is a fine dark rose, much like that old favourite the Tuscany Rose, but with smaller and more double flowers.

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