Rose-scenting the way you do wine-tasting? That might not be a far-fetched idea considering that a rose’s scent is related to its colour. Darker coloured red and pink roses smell like our typical association with a “rose” scent, often found in fragrances. The scent of white and yellow roses is reminiscent of violets and lemon. In fact, rose scents fall into seven broad categories: rose, nasturtium, orris, violets, apple, clove and lemon. There are 26 other less known categories with really interesting scents such as wine, parsley, and even moss. So…”a rose by any other name would smell as sweet”, true or false? We’d say it depends 😉

Ever wondered why morning nature walks are so invigorating and the smell of nature tends to be especially distinct?

Wafts of rose fragrance for the early risers

Did you know that rose scent varies depending on the time of the day and season? There’s a reward for you early-risers – early mornings are when the scents are the strongest. The first summer blooms from roses also tend to produce the most prominent scents.

But why don’t I smell any scents from the roses in my bouquet sometimes?

‘Petite Bloomen Pick’ – Roses bouquet in tropical theme by our partner florist, Bloomen

By nature, the scent of roses play a reproductive function for attracting pollinators. However, rose breeders have prioritized durability more than fragrances in roses cultivation these days, as flowers often have to travel miles from farm to freight to florists. For many rose breeders, they have shifted focus to more commercially viable aspects such as disease resistance, attractive looks and ability to stay fresh in a vase for a prolonged period of time.

‘Summer Pink Bouquet’ – beautiful shades of pink by our partner florist, Little Forest Flowers

Today, most roses that retain their natural rose scent are garden roses. Breeding roses with scent is no easy feat as there is no guarantee that two parent roses with powerful scents will produce a scented offspring. For this reason, garden roses are often priced at a more premium level given the challenging process of breeding them. Breeders such as David Austin are renowned for producing enticing scented garden roses. It was David Austin who gave roses back their sweet scent while many others focused on appearance as the key commercial factor.

“RhNUDX1” is not a typo.

Scientists have recently discovered the “RhNUDX1” gene, an enzyme found in the cells of flower petals, responsible for generating a chemical called monoterpene geraniol, the primary constituent of rose oil. What discovery of this genetic code mean for us is that we could potentially be able to enjoy roses that smell captivating and have a longer vase life as well!

‘Quicksand Bouquet’ by our partner florist, Bucket Full of Roses

Special thank you to the team at Kampong Flowers for sharing their wisdom and experience on scented garden roses.

Visit Fleurica’s flower marketplace for over 50 unique floral designs, featuring roses and other beautiful blooms!