Photo courtesy of May Johnson
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Bred by Unknown
Introduced in Australia by Camden Park
in 1843 as 'Provence Rose'.
Pink. Strong, rose fragrance. Medium to large, very full (41+ petals), borne mostly solitary, in small clusters, nodding or "weak neck" bloom form. Once-blooming spring or summer.
Armed with thorns / prickles, bushy, well-branched. Large, semi-glossy, medium green foliage. 5 to 7 leaflets.
Height of 5' to 6' 11" (150 to 210 cm). Width of up to 5' (up to 150 cm).
'Common Provence' and 'Cabbage Provence' seem to have been distinct varieties.
Rosa centifolia seems to bloom in flushes throughout the year in temperate climates - see References.
The thirteenth-century agricultural and horticultural manual, Āsār va aḥyā' by Rashid al-din Fadl-allāh Hamadānī (1247?-1318), mentions varieties with one hundred and even two hundred petals. The earliest mention of R. centifolia seems to be in Zoroastrian religious writings of the VIIIth century or earlier.