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Science

The world of roses under scientific aspects

We humans are fascinated by roses and deal with them for a very long time. But the seemingly so familiar plant brings still hold some secrets!

In particular, the systematic classification of wild roses with their numerous varieties and crosses is often difficult, so that even the universal genius Johann Wolfgang von Goethe had to capitulate: "On the other hand, there are characterless sexes, to which one may perhaps hardly ascribe species, since they lose themselves in boundless varieties. I have sometimes ventured to call these sexes the songlike and to give this ephithet to the rose, which, of course, does not diminish its grace; Rosa Canina in particular would like to incur this reproach.

With the opening of the Central Office for Rose Research in Sangerhausen in 1935, an important step was taken to approach the rose scientifically. In the present, projects followed - in cooperation with various universities - to record the diversity of roses with topics such as the descent of the Alba roses, the determination of molecular and cytogenetic characteristics or the chemical diversity of the rose fragrance.

The Rosa genus is one of the most commercially important ornamental plant groups in the world. To ensure that rose lovers can continue to enjoy their beauty in the future, professional rose breeders today are primarily concerned with aspects such as plant health or the development of desirable combinations of habit, flowering and rose fragrance.

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