Dozens of clippings stolen from Florida Southern College's rose garden

Florida Southern College in Lakeland said someone snuck into their beloved rose garden and cut dozens of clippings off two of their most unusual plants. 

The college's rose garden is often a temporary escape from the pressures of life for students. 

"I have spent some time meditating, studying, and sometimes just chatting with friends," Ian Phillips, a Florida Southern College student, said. 

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That sense of peace, though, was recently violated by an intruder. Dr. Malcom Manners made the discovery as he was strolling through the other day. 

"I try to promote on my social media when the garden is going to be in good bloom, so I was just out thinking that one is going to be open in a week, that one in a week, and walked up to that plant and there wasn’t a single bud on it," said Manners, who is a horticultural professor at the college. 

Then, he discovered a second bush that had suffered the same fate. The person who snuck in had taken dozens of clippings. 

The value of each clipping is about $25. Manners estimates about 100 were stolen, bringing the total worth of the stolen clipping to about $2,500. 

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There are 200 different types of roses in the garden, and the culprit took from two of the most unusual bushes – ones that have taken years to develop. 

"Whether they are going to sell it wholesale or retail, what they’re going to do, that could be worth a substantial amount," Manners said.