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Rugosa a rose for all seasons

This article was first published on 07 Dec 2021.

Rugosa roses

Rugosa roses

Photo by the Otago Daily Times

The Latin word rugosa means ‘wrinkled’ and the leaves on rugosa roses certainly live up to their name. Rich green, crinkled serrated leaves with pronounced veins are often produced in five or seven leaflets.

Rugosa roses fit into the low maintenance, generally disease-resistant, and easy-care roses category. They are capable of growing in difficult conditions.

Suitable in a cottage garden, as a stand-alone rose, grouping or hedge planting it’s just a case of choosing the right one for which location.

Flowering starts about late October early November and can continue through to summer. Many have a fragrance.

By leaving on spent flowers you will enjoy a lovely display of attractive hips over the autumn and into the winter months. In autumn there is also an attractive change of leaf colour prior to leaf drop.

Some Rugosas do have a suckering habit but these suckers can be easily removed regularly to contain them. Prune to remove old and weak wood or shape as required.

Rugosa roses are available in a wide colour range, so you are sure to find one of a suitable size and growth habit and colour for your garden.

Pictured is Rosa 'Linda Campbell' – a repeat flowerer with semi-double, red flowers in large clusters with attractive foliage. Flowering alongside is 'Agnes' – always the first one to flower in the collection with lovely soft primrose-yellow flowers fading to white.