Rainbow roses! They are unmistakably bold, exuberant and harsh. We florists see these roses every visit to the Wholesaler. They sit in the corner, usually untouched by the likes of me. But I decided to buy a bunch and take a closer look.

A little background: I was throwing a birthday party for my husband earlier this year and wanted to put flowers out. He’s generally pretty laid back, especially when it comes to flowers. Cupcakes or cake are more of a priority in his mind.

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So what was research in flowers quickly became an experiment in social nuances as well. Who is ordering these roses for delivery, and what designer welcomes working with them? I had several florist friends give me a sideways glance as I ducked out of the market with the bunch under my arm.

The roses had some of the sharpest thorns I have ever encountered! The packaging material had dyed splotch marks throughout, as well as my fingers, after a quick cleaning.

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And take a close look at that foliage…

How do they do it? Here’s what I found on the internet. According to snopes.com a Dutch flower company developed a ‘special dying technique’ that is patented for total world domination. The rose stem is split several times and each segment drinks different color dyes ‘from natural plant extracts’. The rose draws liquid up the length of it’s stem to keep the bloom upright and full, and the color manifests itself in the petals.

. . .

Alternatively, there is great attention being directed towards responsible growing practices and locally sourced product in flowers these days. We are blessed to have the Seattle Wholesale Growers Market here. The modern Bride wants to know where her wedding flowers come from and increasingly goes to a national database like Slowflowers.com for like-minded professionals to work with (you can find me there!).

It is a flower like the Rainbow rose that reminds us of how far we have come in respect towards what we grow, celebrate, nurture, decorate with and send to our loved ones. This unique dying process does utilize the plants natural hydrating process, but nonetheless, it’s the manipulation on a massive scale that concerns me.

So while I attained the ‘wow’ factor for our party floral, you won’t find me buying a bunch of these again. They don’t mix well with others. I’ll stick with the sturdy, fresh and naturally captivating product.

When it comes to color, Mother nature comes up with some brilliant combinations.

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