A Rose Puzzle

“If the rose puzzled its mind over the question how it grew,
it would not have been the miracle that it is.” – J B Yeats

This rose bush, which is full of dead canes and grows within my grasp in front of my balcony, somehow continues to put forth a profusion of blooms every summer. They are, sadly, very short-lived, are a soft petal pink, and most blooms have five petals, approximately 1.5″ across. They have a very showy yellow center and are a magnet for bees. It was planted on this property about 30 years ago. Anyone care to guess as to what kind it is? I have no clue as to its identification or origins, but I surely do enjoy its showy visit every year.


Author: nancybond

A writer, photographer, naturalist from small town Nova Scotia, Canada.

15 thoughts on “A Rose Puzzle”

  1. Nancy, very nice quote we humans can certainly benefit from pondering.

    Could it be Rosa ‘Nearly Wild?’ That’s what it looks like to me. There are lots of them in our area. They seem to be able to take a lot of neglect and just keep on blooming like crazy.

  2. Nancy, it looks very much like the wild dog rose, Rosa canina that grows in many hedgerows in Europe.
    It is often used as the rootstock for named cultivars, and if the graft fails, the roots can often continue to grow and send up these beautiful shoots that flower in high summer.
    This is the rose that Shakespeare knew, and a rose by any other name….

  3. *Gardengirl and Threadspider, you’ve given me some ideas to look up — I’ll let you know! Thanks.

    *Gail – Hi! The rose photos are mine, taken early this morning. :) And yes, I like that quote very much!

  4. *Threadspider, I googled “wild dog rose” in images and this pic looks exactly like the bush in question, so I’d say that’s it. :)


    *Gardengirl, it does look a lot like the rosa “Nearly Wild” but it’s a very tall bush – probably 8′ – more leaf than petal, so to speak, and quite gangly, not as compact as the rosa “Nearly Wild”. Very similar though. :)

    Thanks, both!

  5. Nancy, it looks very much to me like our native wild rose. It grows here everywhere, and it’s lovely. Very floriferous. A similar species here is the Prairie Rose, which is native to North Dakota. In fact, I can’t really tell the difference between the two.

  6. *Kylee — it does look very much like both of those links, right down to the leaf shape.

    *GP — it is very lightly scented, not so much so that you can smell it from a distance.

    Thank you both.

  7. Such a delicate rose. It looks like the old heirloom roses that used to be grown back before the 20th century brought a lot of hybrids. That may be why its canes look so “bad”. The old fashioned roses were often like that.

    Cindy at Rosehaven Cottage

  8. This is currently blooming all over the woods around us here. It’s just a plain, simple, wild rose. Not crossed, not grafted, not bothered. Just doing what it should.

    I love the ones where the petals are heart shaped. I’ll get a picture for you next time I’m in the woods.

  9. Did you find out what was munching on your pepper? We have grasshoppers here and they eat leaves like that too. Nasty little bugs. They would probably love a little dishsoap.(-: The rose is really pretty. I don’t know what it is either.(-:

  10. *Cindee — I believe, as suggested by some more knowledgeable gardeners, it is a cutter bee, and I believe I’ve seen one or two of them since — that I had mistaken for small hornets. :-/

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