Rosa canina var. froebelii

In another thread someone had mentioned ‘Frontenac’, so I went to HelpMeFind to check out its parentage. It was somewhat confusing but what I’m most intrigued by now is… ‘Suzanne’ is in its parentage, which I’ve always seen referred to as a second generation hybrid of laxa X spinosissima. HelpMeFind lists it as Rosa canina var. froebelii X spinosissima but clarifies this by saying Rosa canina var. froebelii is synonomous with laxa… but that this laxa is not the true laxa. Evidently ‘Haidee’ is of a similar parentage. So… any of the multitude of roses descended from these Skinner roses are not laxa descendants but Rosa canina var. froebelii descendants instead? Hmmm.

Does anyone know the ploidy of this variant of Rosa canina – is it a pentaploid with typical Caninae type of meiosis?

And then Rosa X hibernica, which is Rosa canina X spinosissima, and its few descendants might warrant reconsideration by hybridizers.

Are there other roses that I’ve been thinking of as laxa derived, that are really from this canina variant?

Well, I just checked it and “Yes there are!”

‘Isabella Skinner’ and ‘John Cabot’ for instance. And all those Griffith Buck roses that have descended from his cross of [the eglanteria derived] Josef Rothmund X “laxa” (which was really Rosa canina var. froebelii).

I’m sorry to ramble on so, but this is a “Wow” moment for me… I had thought of all of these as being from true laxa and now it seems they’re really heavy on the Caninae-influence, combining eglanteria and canina derivatives.

I might have to rethink some strategies. Maybe I should do some Caninae X Pimpinellifoliae crosses of my own. I could use double types like ‘Double White Scotch’ and/or yellows like ‘Hazeldean’ to spice things up. It seems from ‘Suzanne’ and ‘Prairie Peace’, that one can get “occasional repeat later in the season” from advanced generations with this type of ancestry alone. And one can get full repeat bloom from first generation hybrids with Hybrid Teas, considering the Rosa X hibernica hybrids (Colin Dickson’s ‘Irish Fireflame’ and ‘Irish Elegance’; McGredy’s ‘Isobel’; Chaplin’s ‘Innocence’).


Hi Tom, I made a post regarding hibernica and descendants not long ago. I got no response.

I am especially intrigued by Innocence. It is hard to believe these are first generation hybrids. All records were destroyed in a fire apparently.

Innocence is listed only to zone 7 which does not make sense.

I sowed some OP seed of Innocence last season. I love this little floribunda I got as a result.

It is apparently of hybrid origin but hard to be positive.


The laxa used by Skinner was R. laxa Retzius, also used by Griffith Buck. It is the one in the Cinnamomeae section, rather than the one in Caninae. You should realize that if that were not the case, Haidee wouldn’t be nearly as bone-hardy as it is. The HelpMeFind information is incorrect; someone obviously made a logical leap from laxa to laxa and didn’t quite land on their feet :slight_smile:

On the other hand, I’m all for breeding with the Caninae section - many of them do seem to be fairly disease prone, but surely there are many hidden merits as well. The successes of the eglanteria hybrids alone are enough to fire up the imagination.

Thanks for clearing up that mix-up, Stefan. I thought it made more sense that ‘Suzanne’ and ‘Haidee’ had descended from the Cinnamomeae laxa, rather than the Caninae one.

And I agree about the potential, for good things to come from Caninae hybridizing. I’m still intrigued by those X hibernica hybrids too, Robert. If they were from just one hybridizer, I could write them off more easily as cases of mistaken parentage, but three different ones? Makes me want to try it out myself.

Stefan, you should report this error to HMF. I’m sure they would be happy to try and get it sorted out.

Tom, ‘Innocence’ is a surprisigly easy seed parent but zone 7?

Something is amiss or the parentage could not be as reported.

Hibernica seems to be the key. That would be a fun way to play with.