Old roses in the garden of David Carlson

When the spring is finally here (at least in southern Sweden) I thought it was about time to bring forward some dreams about the summer. Besides my interest in design in a cultural perspective, which I write about here at David Report, I have a big passion for old roses. I have just uploaded a bunch of images from my own rose garden in Falsterbo, a small seaside village the southernmost part of Sweden, to our Flickr page.

There is much about the old-fashioned roses that fascinates. Listen to the names of ‘Cardinal Richelieu’ and the ‘Comte de Chambord’ and feel the history of Napoleon’s battlefields. Or the rose that is named after the Empress Josephine’s garden, ‘Souvenir de la Malmasion’. The old-fashioned roses have a colorful and mythical thousands of years of history and they were brought to our latitude with monks and crusaders. The monks cultivated roses both for their religious symbolism and use in medicine production. The roses show according to me the same sustainable and quality that I seek in good design – they withstand the test of time and they are above short-term trends.

There is something special to go out in the garden a humid June morning and feel how the roses smell hangs heavy in the air. Everything from the little sweet and oily traditional rose scent to a palette of musk, citrus, almonds, and a summer meadow. While you can often see how the thin, sometimes almost transparent petals reflects the morning light in the night’s remaining drops of dew.

When you go completely into something arises an almost meditative experience. Gardening in general and old roses in particular, works a bit like that for me. Time and space come together and present will be intense and very present.

My rose garden as around 100 different, mainly old and English (Austin) roses. The garden is open for visitors last Sunday of June during the “Rosor på Falsterbonäset” event. I’m also doing ectures about old roses every now and then.

Maybe I should try to write a book about my passion for culturally connected design and old roses, in combination, one day…

The old rose Duchesse de Rohan in the Falsterbo garden

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