Watch How the Kentucky Derby Rose Garland Is Made

Grocery store in Louisville, Ky., pulls an all-nighter to make the winning rose garland — plus how to make your own

Watch How the Kentucky Derby Rose Garland Is Made
Flickr/ Valdiney Palenta

Ever wondered how — and who — makes the Kentucky Derby Rose Garland, gifted to the winning team? Turns out, the famous rose garland is made by a Kroger grocery store in Louisville, Ky.

You can watch the rose garland be made by the grocery-store florists this "Derby Eve" at the Louisville location. Nearly 400 "Freedom" roses are sewn into the green satin backing to create the final product, which is then taken (by police escort) to the Clubhouse Gardens. The red rose has been the official flower of the Kentucky Derby since 1904.

Kroger, the world's largest florist, has been supplying the Rose Garland for 26 years. Said Carol Belser, manager of the Kroger Floral Center in Louisville to WAVE, "Kroger is very proud that Churchill Downs entrusts this important part of the Derby tradition to our team of floral designers... It's a thrill to see their craftsmanship televised around the world on Derby Day."

Derby Day party planners, incorporate your own rose garland into your table centerpieces: We like Hostess with the Mostest's and Style Me Pretty's take on the rose garland, whether reds based with a black background, or blended in with lighter reds and pinks for a softer touch. Set them out among your Kentucky Derby cocktails and enjoy!


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