Royal National Rose Society
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The Royal National Rose Society is dedicated to the cultivation and appreciation of roses. It was founded in 1876 and is based near St Albans in England. It is 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 late Queen Mother.[clarification needed]
At its headquarters the society owns and maintains the Gardens of the Rose, which are open to the public during the summer flowering season 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 is to conduct trials for new cultivars of roses from all over the world. The International Merit Trials for both amateur and professional breeders, held at the Royal National Rose Society Gardens' are renowned worldwide. In the autumn of 2013 trials of gold standard roses were relocated to the Garden of the Rose from their previous home in Cambridge. The trial grounds also now contain trials of clematis plants run by the British Clematis Society. .
Where possible the society provides its members help with any rose related problems, from finding a specific rose through to identifying roses, as well as providing general and specific rose care advice.
The society publishes a magazine called The Rose. The yearly publication The Rose Annual was revived in 2005 but has not been printed since 2007.
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