The rainbow rose is a rose which has had its petals artificially colored. The method exploits the rose's natural processes by which water is drawn up the stem. By splitting the stem and dipping each part in different colored water, the colors are drawn into the petals resulting in a multicolored rose. With these changes to the rose, it causes them to not live as long as an uncolored rose. Besides roses, other cut flowers like the chrysanthemum, carnation, hydrangea and some species of orchids can also be colored using the same method.
The uncomplicated process has been known for more than a millennium. Several companies have moved to patent the process. It appears they have been partially successful.It will be up to the courts to decide if the process can be patented.
A lot of research was done to find the best cultivar for this unique coloring process, with the result that the Venezuela Rose is the only cultivar that absorbs all the different colorants perfectly. The Venezuela Rose is a Hybrid Tea, cream rose that grows in the Netherlands, Colombia and Ecuador. When the rose is in full bloom it has a flower diameter of 6 cm and a stem length of 40 to 100 cm. The rose is not scented. Other cultivars that can be used for this coloring process are Rosa La Belle and Rosa Avalanche+. However, these cultivars rainbow are not as bright as Venezuela.
The Original Rainbow Rose has the 7 colors of the rainbow and this is the most popular rose in this category. However there are also the tropical variant with combinations of red/pink and yellow, and the ocean variant with combinations of green and blue. Other color combinations are also possible, though black and white are impossible to make.
- Antonio A. Montenegro, Roberto Lopez and Jules Janick. "Gilding the Lilies: Rainbow Roses and Confetti Poinsettias". Chronica Horticulturae - Volume 48, Number 1, 2008. International Society for Horticultural Science. p. 16. Retrieved 23 May 2010.
- "'Rainbow' roses are all the rage". Metro. 6 February 2007. Retrieved 23 May 2010.
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