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A rose named Lenny

14 March 2019

“A rose by any other name will smell as sweet.” – William Shakespeare.

 Every now and then, St Vincent's Care Services Bardon Bridget Johnstone would get a bouquet of beautiful yellow roses. They’re not ordinary roses, at least for Bridget, her family and her daughter who takes care of them. They’re “Lennys ”— roses the Queensland Rose Society named after her husband to honour one of their long time members on his 90th birthday. 

Bridget and Lenny were among the first residents who moved into the newly built Donnybrook building in 2014. A few months on, Lenny passed away, but left lasting remembrances in Bardon's gardens where the roses he has planted continue to bloom. 

Lenny had been a passionate rose grower since 1954 when Bridget and he were newly married. Some of the rose varieties he cultivated have won awards from the Queensland Rose Society. Of the countless varieties he has grown, Lenny treasured one the most – a pinkish bloom he named “Bridget’s Joy”.

As for Bridget, she would beg to differ from what Shakespeare wrote in Romeo and Juliet. For her, a rose by another name does smell a lot sweeter. And the name of that rose is “Lenny”.