Saturday, February 23, 2013

Tombstone's Rose

    The 2013 Tombstone Rose Tree Festival happens this year on April 5 - 7.  Here is our story that we wrote about the festival a couple years ago.
     It is always good to visit the "Town Too Tough To Die" and the Rose Tree Festival is one of the best times to go.  Here too is a good link about the festival -

Two photos were provided by Marcia Spitier

     There has been many a shady lady who lived out her life's story along the dusty streets of ol' Tombstone. There was Big Nose Kate, Dutch Annie, Madam Mustache and so many more. But none of the ladies of Tombstone have lived so long nor brought more love and enjoyment to people from around the world than Rose.
      Tombstone, Arizona is best known for its many silver mines, unique historic characters and gunfights.  Yet Rose has outlived them all and continues to this day to fill the air with her sweet fragrance while still offering cover from the hot summer afternoons that always find their way to the “Town Too Tough To Die.” 
      Rose first came to Tombstone in 1885 as a gift of love for the homesick bride, Mary Gee, from her family in far away Scotland.  Rose, more formally known as the Lady Banksia Rose, was just one of several garden plants that had made their way across the sea to Tombstone in a wooden crate.
Mary, with her friend Amelia Adamson, planted the rooted cutting of the white rose in the patio of the boarding house where they were staying.  To everyone's surprise Rose lived and thrived in the southern Arizona climate. 
      By the 1930s Rose was attracting the attention of some pretty famous people.  In that year Robert Ripley proclaimed this Tombstone Rose to be “The World's Largest Rose” a title that this shady lady still holds today in the Guinness Book of World Records.
     Rose's branches now cover over 8,000 square feet of patio where more than 300 people can find shady relief from the Arizona sun.  Many a bride and groom have traveled to Tombstone, Arizona to profess their everlasting love while standing under the fragrant blossoms of the Shady Lady of Tombstone.
     Today, Tombstone's Lady Banksia Rose is a part of the Rose Tree Museum and is still growing on the corner of 4th & Toughnut Streets.  The folks of Tombstone celebrate their famous lady each spring during their Rose Tree Festival.  If you happen to arrive in Tombstone while her millions of white blossoms are blooming, you too will be charmed by her beauty and will enjoy your time with Rose, the real Shady Lady of Tombstone.  

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