There’s a long tradition among plant breeders of naming new varieties after members of the Royal family.
It began with the unveiling of the Queen Victoria Lobelia in the 18th century, and has continued enthusiastically ever since, with varieties such as the striking Queen Mum Agapanthus, the Princess Anne Rose and the Princess Diana Clematis all becoming big favourites with gardeners.
To mark this historic year, the King Charles Coronation rose has launched. With its pink double blooms and distinctive ruffled petals, this new scented floribunda variety certainly looks set to establish itself as a king of the rose bed.
The new King has made no secret of his own love of gardening, and having revealed that his favourite flower is the stately blue Delphinium, what’s the betting that breeders are not already hard at work on producing a new Delph in honour of His Majesty.
There is already a Clematis Prince Charles with striking pale purple/blue flowers, previously named in his honour, and which typically blooms between July and September.
Previous Royal roses
One of the most famous Royally-named roses is the iconic and multi award-winning Queen Elizabeth, created for the coronation of 1953. Its long stems can grow up to six feet, making them perfect for cutting, and in 1979, this stunning Grandiflora was inducted in the Rose Hall of Fame, confirming it as an all-time classic.
More recently, award-winning rose breeder David Austin created the “William and Catherine” Rose to mark another Royal wedding. A musk hybrid bush, it produces a mass of blooms, each one a tender bell-shaped white rose with a scent of myrrh.
And since then, a new generation of namings has been taking place, with a daffodil cheekily named Georgie Boy in honour of Prince George, a soft pink and green chrysanthemum named Princess Charlotte, and a vivid violet coloured clematis named Prince Louis.