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Rosa rubiginosa
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

sweet briar

Vigorous species rose about 3.5m tall, with strong, upright, prickly stems bearing apple-scented foliage. Fragrant, single, clear blush-pink blooms to 4cm across, produced along the branches, once-flowering in summer, followed freely by red fruits (hips) lasting into winter

Other common names
sweet brier
eglantine
Synonyms
Rosa eglanteria
Rosa umbellata
see moreRosa comosa
Rosa klukii
Rosa echinocarpa
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Size
Ultimate height
2.5–4 metres
Time to ultimate height
5–10 years
Ultimate spread
1.5–2.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Clay
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green
Summer Pink Green
Autumn Green Red
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Exposed or Sheltered
Hardiness
H7
Botanical details
Family
Rosaceae
Native to the UK
Yes
Foliage
Deciduous
Potentially harmful
Fruit are ornamental - not to be eaten. Wear gloves and other protective equipment when handling
Genus

Rosa can be deciduous or semi-evergreen shrubs or scrambling climbers, with usually thorny stems bearing compound pinnate leaves and solitary or clustered flowers. Flowers may be followed by showy red or purple fruits in some varieties.

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Europe

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in fertile, humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil in full sun. Mulch with well-rotted organic matter in late winter or early spring, and for best flowering apply a general rose or shrub fertiliser in early spring and again in early summer. See rose cultivation. Tolerant of poor soil and shade, suitable for hedging

Propagation

Propagate by softwood cuttings in early to mid spring, hardwood cuttings in late summer to autumn or by chip budding in summer; propagate by seed; species roses can be propagated by seed but need stratification and germination may take two seasons

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Wildflower meadow
  • Hedging and screens
Pruning

Pruning group 20 (shrub roses)

Pests

May be susceptible to aphids, rose leafhopper, glasshouse red spider mite, scale insects, caterpillars, large rose sawfly, rose slugworm sawfly and rose leaf-rolling sawfly. Deer and rabbits can cause damage

Diseases

May be susceptible to rose black spot, rose rust, replant disease, rose dieback, and rose powdery mildew and sometimes honey fungus. May also be susceptible to disorders rose blindness and flower balling

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