Janet B Wood

“What is in a name? That which we call a rose. By any other word would smell as sweet”
(Romeo & Juliet Act II, Scene II).

If a rose was not called a rose would it still be a rose?

Many years ago an old lady let me take cuttings of a rambling rose that I had admired growing up her garden wall. This old lady told me that this Jacobean rose had been ‘rediscovered’ by her grandmother, Janet B Wood.

The cuttings took and Janet B Wood climbed our mature sycamore tree with beauty and vigour.

That tree is no more.

I was reminded of this rose, its name, and the story behind it, when reading the diaries of the poet William Soutar who was confined to bed for decades due to progressive ankylosing spondylitis:


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