"The Peace rose, correctly Rosa 'Madame A. Meilland', is a well-known and successful garden rose," notes Wikipedia. "The Peace rose was developed by French horticulturist Francis Meilland in the years 1935 to 1939. When Meilland foresaw the German invasion of France, he sent cuttings to friends in Italy, Turkey, Germany, and the United States to protect the new rose. It is said that it was sent to the U.S. on the last plane available before the German invasion where it was safely propagated by the Conard Pyle Co. during the war. By 1992, over one hundred million plants of this hybrid tea had been sold.
"Because Meilland had sent out his cuttings just before the war, communication between the cultivators was not possible, which is why the rose received different names. In France, Francis and Alain Meilland decided to call the cultivar 'Madame A. Meilland', in honor of the Francis' deceased mother, Alain Meilland's wife Claudia. This is the formal cultivar name. Other names are considered by the International Code of Nomenclature for Cultivated Plants as trade or selling names. In Italy it was called Gioia (It. for joy), in Germany Gloria Dei (Lat. for glory of God) and in the USA, Sweden and Norway 'Peace'.
"The rose became known as Peace in the following way. In early 1945 rose grower Meilland wrote to Field Marshal Alan Brooke (later Viscount Alanbrooke), the principal author of the master strategy that won the Second World War, to thank him for his key part in the liberation of France and to ask if Brooke would give his name to the rose. Brooke declined saying that, though he was honored to be asked, his name would soon be forgotten and a much better and more enduring name would be 'Peace'. The adoption of the trade name 'Peace' was publicly announced in the United States on April 29, 1945, by the introducers, Messrs Conard-Pyle Co.. This was the very day that Berlin fell, a day considered a turning point in the Second World War in Europe. Later that year Peace roses were given to each of the delegations at the inaugural meeting of the United Nations in San Francisco, each with a note which read: 'We hope the 'Peace' rose will influence men’s thoughts for everlasting world peace'.
"The cultivar has large flowers of a light yellow to cream color, slightly flushed at the petal edges with crimson-pink. It is hardy and vigorous and relatively resistant to disease, making it popular in gardens as well as in the floral trade."
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