First sprout from Dr. Eckener!

I’ve tried the last two years to get fertile seeds from Dr. Eckener, A yellow/pink rugosa hybrid. The first year I only got just one hip and had to harvest it green just before winter, and got no germinations. This last year it set hips well and produced about 5 huge seeds per large hip from pollen of Rugelda, Gold Glow, and Goldmoss. The hips ripened nicely and I put the seeds all together.

Being such large seeds I suspected they would take longer to stratify and sprout and they sure have, but now that one has sprouted I have hopes for more.

I think this rose has potential with roses like Rugelda, another yellow/pink rugosa hybrid with beautiful shiney foliage.

I found that pollen from both Dr. E. and Rugelda to be well received by most of my tetraploid roses. I suspect that neither is more than 25% rugosa but when crossed together some of the rugosa genes may pair up to give increased hardiness and disease resistance, which both these cultivars already posess to a fair degree.


I did a computer search using my Modern Roses 11 search program for offspring of Dr. Eckener. I could not find any. I did find one sport - Golden King, 1935.

Suzanne Verrier in her book states that Dr. Eckener does not set hips. Congratulations on your success.


Yes, I had heard the same thing, …After I got the rose, But David told me he had seen hips on a bush in Minnesota so I was hopeful.

It’s such a lovely rose with it’s pale yellow flowers that fade to pale pink. A very agressive plant, but even last year as a smaller plant it set hips, well one, that is. This year it set at least a dozen, each more than an inch long by 3/4 inch thick. The seeds are HUGE, probably nearing 1/4th inch in diameter.

So far only just the one sprout but I am hopeful that there may be more, even if it takes another year of stratification. I got probably 25 or more seeds from the hips.

Dr. Eckener’s pollen has been well tolerated by my garden roses and germination was good for them. It will be interesting to see what kind of rose they become.

Do you think it is likely that the rugosa traits could be somewhat amplified when crossed to Rugelda?

I’ve found that in general larger rose seeds take much longer to begin sprouting, as these are doing.


Congrats! I don’t know how I didn’t see this message… Good luck for the future with Dr. Eckener.

Hi Randy

Any progress in using Dr. Eckener?


Hi Randy,

Eight years ago I exchanged several packages of OP seeds with Peter Nagle, a hybridizer in Quebec–I’d love to hear from him if he is still out there. Anyway, while most of the seeds he sent me that germinated were lost in an unfortunate planting experiment, I did have one seedling that survived. This seedling was the result of an open pollination of his M2 (R. spinosissima x Dr. Eckner)OP. He told me that his M2 hybrid had scotch-like foliage and blooms similar to the rugosa rose Agnes, although a bit creamier. The 2 inch blooms of the seedling I germinated are a beautiful pink/yellow blend semi-double (probably a contribution from Dr. E) that have a nice soft peach appearance when first opened before fading to a light pink color. The shrub is low growing (about 2- 2.5 feet) and has typical scotch-briar foliage, so I suspect that the OP parent may have contributed another dose of R. spinosissima genes, although this is speculation. The plant is completely hardy in Zone 3 and has been disease-free since it germinated. I tried a few crosses using it as a female several years ago when the first blooms formed, but no cross took (rather limited attempts). At that time I also had trouble getting pollen and the little bit I obtained was not used successfully. However, after several years of repeated relocations outside, this plant is in its permanent location and pretty close to maturity. Fertility may have improved slightly, or at least more blooms are available to maximize a collection of pollen.

While I have not had any success using it in hybridizing to date, I did collect 3 OP hips from it this past fall with a total of nine seeds, so it is not completely sterile. After five months in the refrigerator and short periods of exposure to ambient temperatures I have not yet had any germination, but they were mature hips and the seeds appeared healthy, mature, and they sank with a flotation test. I am still hopeful that seedlings may yet make an appearance although it may require another year. The roses surrounding this hybrid which bloom at the same time are Dorenboss Selection, Mrs. Colville, and Kakwa, so further Spinosissima contributions have a high probability. I have a few pictures of this plant and the blooms that I could share with you and if you are interested, and I can certainly try and collect more pollen for you this spring. Unfortunately, my blooms will occur in late May or early June and may be too late for you to use this season. Also, you seem to be most interested in Dr. Eckner, so this plant may not be one you are interested in.

I was not aware that Dr. Eckner had not produced any recorded descendants. Peter might be interested to hear that. If any of our Canadian breeders have made Peter Nagle’s acquaintance, they may wish to inform him of this fact and they might also be able to put you in touch with him, Randy.


Julie Overom

How long did you have to wait for the seeds to germinate/sprout? I have a whole batch of very large OP seeds I’ve harvested from I believe to be hybrid teas I found down in the city. The hips were HUGE and the seeds equally large. I actually reccently cracked a few open to see if they were still viable and they indeed had small embryos so I took them out of the fridge to see if some higher temps could trigger them to crack.

How big would you say the seeds were in centimeters? Has anybody tried sandpapering certain seeds as that might help aid the seedling to push through the seed-coat?


I suggest that you use enzymes to sofften the seed coat, see: