Royal National Rose Society

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Royal National Rose Society Gardens in 2013

The Royal National Rose Society was a specialist horticultural society in the United Kingdom, dedicated to the cultivation and appreciation of roses. It was founded in 1876 and was based near St Albans in England. It was a membership organisation, with members drawn from professional and amateur gardeners and horticultural businesses in the United Kingdom and around the world.

Royal patronage commenced in 1901 with Queen Alexandra and continued through to the Queen Mother.[clarification needed]

At its headquarters, the society owned and maintained the Gardens of the Rose, which were open to the public during specified times and to society members all year round. The gardens were redesigned and replanted in 2005; previously the gardens were planted solely with rose varieties, but the refurbishment saw the installation of a large formal garden featuring approximately 15,000 roses alongside companion planting. The gardens celebrated their 50th anniversary in July 2013.

A key function of the society was to conduct trials of new varieties of roses that were submitted by breeders from around the world. It also provided advice to its members with rose related questions, such as finding a specific rose or identifying roses, as well as providing general and specific rose care advice.

The society published a magazine called The Rose, and during some of its history also produced the yearly publication The Rose Annual.

The society went into administration on 15 May 2017, and the gardens were closed. Former employees told the BBC they were not surprised the society had gone into administration after years of it struggling financially.[1]

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