Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Stop and Smell the Roses…in Virginia

Roses are one of the most commonly used flowers for weddings. However, if you live in Baltimore and want roses for your wedding, they are probably coming from Columbia or Ecuador.  These two countries account for 90% of the roses sold in the United States each year. 

This year, following a trend that is spreading amongst members of the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers,  Bob Wollam of Wollam Gardens decided to put in 140 Kordes Roses-as a test.

Kordes roses are NOT the roses that you get at the supermarket or Costco. Those roses are bred for travel. They have to survive for many days out of water and they have to be disease and insect resistant-so they don’t get rejected at customs. (Check out Amy Stewart’s great book Flower Confidential to learn more about the commercial cut flower industry and why you should support local farmers.)

No…Kordes roses are an old garden variety of fragrant roses. I say fragrant, to differentiate them from the vast majority of commercially sold roses…that have no scent. (Scent has been bred out of roses so that they will have a longer vases life) What is a rose without that sweet scent?

So, LoCoFlo was super excited to  be able to use one of the first batches of Bob’s Kordes roses for Tracey and Kevin’s wedding in June. We loved them!

Now, before you get too excited, we’re not sure yet what the availability of these little jewels will be. Additionally, as an old garden variety flower, these roses have a pretty short vase life.  We’ll be sure to keep up with Bob to see how he thinks the first year of rose growing went. Hopefully, we’ll be seeing more of Kordes roses in the future.

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