Flower of the Month |Guelder Rose

The Guelder-Rose sounds a little bit like a family dynasty from a melodramatic American soap opera (“when the beautiful daughter of oil baron Jim Rose married the charismatic East coast media tycoon Ross Guelder, they thought a life of decadent joy was in store - little did they know…etc etc”). In fact, it’s not that at all (obviously, this is Flower Of The Week!). It’s actually the common name for the Viburnum Opulis, the beautiful flowering plant known for its large exploding baubles of ivory petals and pretty red berries.

Confusingly, it’s not actually a type of rose at all. Its name relates to the Dutch province of Gelderland, where one of the most popular varieties, the ‘snowball tree’, supposedly originated. Interestingly though, it’s cultural impact is felt much more strongly in a part of Europe less traditionally associated with flowers than the Netherlands. In the Ukraine it is known as the kalyna, where it is one of the country’s national symbols and inspiration for ‘Chervona Kalyna’, the anthem of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army. Its roots in the region can be traced back to the Slavic paganism of millennia ago, with its berries symbolising blood and the undying trace of family roots. Some heavy-handed imagery that could be useful if my teleplay about the trials and tribulations of the Guelder-Rose clan ever gets commissioned by NBC…

Floom Flower Of The Week Guelder Rose Pt

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