Dog rose (Rosa canina) - thorns & bud close up - October 2017
Dog rose is a vigorous arching deciduous shrub with mid-green foliage and pale pink or white flowers 5cm across, either solitary or in small clusters, in early summer, followed by ovoid red fruits. it is very prickly and makes a good natural barrier. The leaves are made up of 2-3 smaller leaflets. Leaf buds can be affected by a gall known as robin's pincushion. This looks like a ball of fibrous red threads they are caused by a gall wasp. The flowers are pink or white and five petalled with a faint sweet smell. The fruit are striking red oval shaped hips (15-20 mm) which form in small clusters. Each hip contains many seeds. There are many species of wild rose found in the UK which are all very similar and difficult to identify. Roses are also commonly planted in gardens and some of these have escaped into the wild. One of these similar species is Rosa rugosa which flowers earlier than dog rose. It is found in hedgerows, woodland edges and on scrubland. Dog rose is more commonly found in the south of the UK but can be found all over, especially in heavy soils. The plant is high in certain antioxidants. The fruit is noted for its high level of vitamin C, and is used to make syrup, tea, and marmalade. It has been grown or encouraged in the wild for the production of vitamin C from its fruit (often as rose-hip syrup), especially during conditions of scarcity or during wartime. The species has also been introduced to other temperate latitudes. During World War II in the United States, Rosa canina was planted in victory gardens, and can still be found growing throughout the country, including roadsides and in wet, sandy areas along the coastlines. In Bulgaria, where it grows in abundance, the hips are used to make a sweet wine as well as tea. In the traditional Austrian medicine, Rosa canina fruits have been used internally as tea for treatment of viral infections and disorders of the kidneys and urinary tract. The hips are used as a flavouring in Cockta, a soft drink made in Slovenia. Forms of this plant are used as stocks for the grafting or budding of cultivated roses. The wild plant is used for stabilising soil in land reclamation and specialised landscaping schemes. Numerous cultivars have been named, though few are common in cultivation. The cultivar Rosa canina 'Assisiensis' is the only dog rose without prickles. The flower is one of the national symbols of Romania. === Scientific classification Kingdom: Plantae (unranked): Angiosperms (unranked): Eudicots (unranked): Rosids Order: Rosales Family: Rosaceae Genus: Rosa Species: R. canina
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