“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. Janet B Wood climbed the mature sycamore tree with equal vigour but greater beauty. That tree is no more and now rose Janet B Wood is growing up our arched pergola.
I was reminded of this rose, its name, and the story when I recently read the diaries of the poet William Soutar who was confined to bed for decades due to progressive ankylosing spondylitis: