This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V23", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
A correspondent says, that one might suppose from its name it was a native species, "but the late Dr. Ward, of Athens, Georgia, informed me years since that it was imported many years ago from the Messrs. Loddiges of London, with a collection of other roses, and he considered it of Asiatic origin." How far this is correct we cannot now say. But it must be remembered that Michaux found it so perfectly wild in Georgia, that so early in the century as 1803 when he found it, he seems to have had not even a suspicion that it had been originally an introduced plant, and supposing it to be truly American, he named it Rosa laevigata. Of course if all this sprung from a plant imported from Messrs. Loddiges, it must have been some years - if indeed we may not say many years - before 1803, in order to have spread so much in a wild condition as to deceive Michaux. We do not know just now the date of the commencement of Loddiges' nursery. Does any one know?
For all this it may have had an Asiatic origin. There is no American species that it seems closely allied to, while it has a close relationship to the Macartney rose - Rosa bracteata, and perhaps some other Asiatic species, though so far as we know, no species exactly like it, has been found in Asia. It is well known that many remarkably close relationships between the Flora of Asia and the Flora of the Atlantic United States have been discovered, but if this rose were one of these, it would most probably have a wider distribution over our continent.