Today, the weather has been almost unremittingly grim. After a rainy night, the clouds briefly lifted at breakfast, the sun came out, and myriad raindrops hung like pellucid beads upon the mossy branches of the wintering trees. Shortly thereafter, however, the skies darkened once more, and the rest of the day was punctuated by cold, wintry showers.
Time, then, to think of more colourful things, and, appropriately, this week's Economist features an interesting story about genetic attempts to create a genuinely blue rose, (www.economist.com/science/displaystory.cfm?story_id=8663291). Horticulturalists attempted for many years, unsuccessfully, to breed blue roses, and existing roses which purport to be blue are, it seems, merely white roses which have been dyed blue. A couple of years ago, however, after many years of research, the Australian biotech company Florigene, working with researchers at its parent company, Suntory, produced a mauve-coloured rose, and attempts continue to develop a genuinely blue rose. www.physorg.com/news3581.html