A low, bushy species, with small but vicious thorns standing straight out from the stem. Leaflets, 5 to 7, thin, coarsely serrate, with narrow stipules. Flowers, single, large, 2 to 3 inches across. Calyx and pedicels, glandular. Petals, notched, wide open. May to July.
Our commonest species, found, generally low and straggling, in dry, rocky fields and woods from Maine to Florida and Louisiana and westward. A double form is found in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
R. nitida. - A low bush, not over 2 feet high, with stems and branches covered densely with small, weak prickles. Leaflets, 5 to 9, with broad stipules at base of petioles, bright green, narrowly oblong, pointed at each end. June and July.
The deep pink buds of our wild roses are even prettier than the open flowers, which quickly fade when picked and drop their petals. Their perfume is more delicate than the garden roses. This species is found in low grounds from Massachusetts northward.
Sweetbrier. Eglantine R. rubiginosa. is prized not so much for its small, pale blossoms as for the delicate fragrance given out by its leaves. These are divided into doubly serrate, oblong to ovate leaflets, and are downy, covered with small, dark glands which exhale the pleasant aroma. Branches, very prickly. June to August.
When the dew is upon the sweetbrier rose, or after a shower, the atmosphere around is filled with the fragrance. Often cultivated, but found also in woods from New England to South Carolina, westward to Tennessee.