Antique Rose—Centifolia

Centifolia means ‘one hundred leaves’ and is also known as the cabbage rose.  Imagine naming a rose after a cabbage?  Picture in your mind a sprawling rose bush, covered in prickles and, instead of delicate pink blossoms, miniature heads of gray-green cabbage.  Extraordinary visually as well as pungent.  Luckily, centifolia was named for the way the petals fold over, like a cabbage, rather than for size, color or scent.  The blossoms are tightly packed with petals and range from whites to delicate pinks to a bright cerise (deep or cherry red). Shrubs are three to five feet and can bend with the weight of the flowers during the seasonal bloom.  The fragrance is described as “intoxicating, rich, heady”.   This is a rose that was often featured in works of art by the dutch masters.

centifolia rose
Antique roses