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One of the differences between China roses and old garden roses of the Western world is the way that European roses fade as they age, but Oriental roses get darker. ‘Sophie’s Perpetual’ is a good example. The flowers are pale China pink at first, palest toward the center, but they turn to crimson as they age. In hot weather this can happen very fast, so that there is a striling contrast between the pale pink inner petals and the dark crimson outer ones.The flowers come in clusters of 3 – 7 on short, sturdy stems. It has dark china rose leaves and a few prickles. It is best pruned lightly. ‘Sophie’s Perpetual’ is a study name given by the rosarian Humphrey Brooke, who reintroduced it, pending the correct identification.
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