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The Peace Rose

Gail Morse

The beautiful, aromatic ‘Peace’ rose with it93s breath-taking yellow, orange, and pink tones was first cultivated on June 15, 15 by Francis Meilland and his father who did the original grafting. A year later, on October 10, 1936 its first buds were opening.

In June, 1939, at a conference of rose grower specialists in Lyon, France, members met at the Meilland business and focused on this particular rose hybrid. Later that year when the Nazi
invasion was imminent, Meilland sent the eyes of this rose to growers in Germany, Italy, Turkey, and the United States.

The rose cultivator who received the eyes in the United States was Robert Pyle. He sent them to the American Rose Society for testing and wrote to Meilland that the rose would be released for its debut when the war ended.

On April 29, 1945, the day that Berlin fell, the ‘Peace’ rose was named in a ceremony at the Pacific Rose Society Annual Exhibition. That same year, Dr. Ray Allen sent one longstemmed ‘Peace’ rose to each of the 49 delegates at the first meeting of the United Nations. Dr. Allen accompanied each rose with a note that said: “We hope the ‘Peace’ rose will influence men’s thoughts for everlasting world peace.”

Shortly after its inaugural meeting, the Westlake Garden Club formed a committee and chose this enchanting rose as its symbol of friendship and tranquility.

Source: “The Peace Rose: History and Appearance of the Most Popular Garden Rose”