species rose?? non viable seeds

I found a beautiful rose in a fence row but I have been unable to determine what it is. Clusters of flowers like multifloral, nice pink petals fading to white centers bright yellow stamens the bush is ~2 1/2 feet tall very fine twiggy branches (I do not know how to post pictures yet). The owner gave me permission to do anything to it but I am reluctant to dig it up, I tried taking cutting this summer they all died:( I waited till fall to get some seeds they looked great (hundreds of seeds)but I wanted to try embryo culture the achenes look great but the seeds look like prunes. Please help, is it a species rose, and how can I get cuttings to take or do I need to try grafting? Help please??

Hi David.

This is one method I like to use for making cuttings:

  1. Take some semi-hardwood cuttings a few inches long, with a few nodes on them, and remove all leaves and soft side growth.

  2. Take one page out of a newspaper, wet it thoroughly under the tap and then crush the wet paper in your hand, to wring out all of the water…so that it is just moist but not dripping wet.

  3. Have cling wrap available.

  4. After all this prep is done, then re-cut the bottom of each of the the cuttings by slicing through a bottom node, with a very sharp blade (secateurs can be used, but real sharp blades cause less tissue crushing damage… for this I use a box-cutter knife).

  5. Wrap the prepared cuttings all together with the newspaper into a roll, with all ends covered. Then cover the “cylinder” entirely with cling wrap.

  6. Keep this cylinder in a dark place like a drawer, and after 2 weeks check for callous formation. You want the bottoms to develop a nice ring of callous tissue creating a nice seal. If by 2 weeks this hasn’t quite happened, recheck every week thereafter. If you find any dead/dying cuttings, just discard them and re-wrap the rest with the same newspaper. Don’t re-wet the newspaper.

  7. Once they have calloused then plant them in a light propagation mix, and leave the top-most node exposed to the air.

  8. Water sparingly (I wait till the mix is pretty much dried before watering again).


Thank you,

I think this will work most of the failures have been due to rotting before the callus forms, I have tried misting, glass jars, and one gallon baggies with 20-40 cuttings each time (2-3 different varieties each time) almost everything dies except for the minis they are almost like weeds. Everything has been under grow lights it is cooling off enough I am going to try some outside.

I will let you know how it works.


I’m assuming you are northern hemisphere. This time of year, I find in my climate that semi-ripe cuttings are best. Make sure there is only mature foliage and no fattening buds at nodes yet on your cutting. Oddly, in the summertime, rooting hormone seems to do more harm than help for many cuttings in my (prior) climate.

Try removing more leaves, planting more deeply in a better draining medium, and dispense with misting overhead if your climate is adequately humid.

Many species are hard to root from stem cuttins and you might consider attempting root cuttings.

Here is a picture of the rose in question, there was only one flush of blooms then the foliage was mostly lost I did see evidence of black spot. There are still 15-20 hips would it be worth collecting them and tring to get them to germinate? I was practicing embryo culture and opened ~50 seeds they were all black and shrunken. Near by I found what I think is a R. multifloral var carnea could this be a hybrid if so any ideas?



That also looks like some other spot disease, which is no wonder because it seems to be in the process of being swallowed whole by a honey suckle lol. Its definitely a multiflora/polyantha descendant but that tone of pink is definitely more modern than multiflora influence alone (usually from china influence).


I am guessing anthracnose is more common on rambling types because of the density of plant tissue both in the interior and exterior of the plant silohette, unlike other types of species which usually just grow outward from the exterior. In other words, the lack of air circulation seems to be the biggest issue.

Hi David.

If the achenes are as tiny as those of R. multiflora then I am amazed you were able to extract the seeds inside them, without damaging them. Well done on that feat!

But…to be honest, I really would not bother embryo culture on really small seeds, unless you like doing that, it is extremely tedious work and of no great benefit IMO.

What are your ultimate goals with this plant?

Do you want to simply multiply copies of this clone, or do you want to breed with it?

If you want to breed with it, it sounds like a bad seed parent, maybe you can collect pollen off it, and see if that sticks to other roses you want to breed it with, and move it forward that way. It might save lots of time.

You don’t say if this is a once-bloomer or not. Decades ago I grew out seedlings of Crimson Rambler (at least that’s what Leonie Bell said it was). Among the offspring several looked almost exactly like your illustrated flower. I have one bush going yet, much neglected and rather shaded. The parent was lost to RRD not long after growing out the seedlings.

Also back round 1900 there was a popular and well-known rose that looks much the same. A tall multiflora climber. Cannot recall its name now, American pillar?, but someone in this town had it in their family all those decades and I was struck by the similarity when I saw it.

My rose roots easily enough from cuttings in the autumn, under plastic under lights in moist low nutrient medium (largely peat). I think the increase in sugars in the plant, combined with low N in the soil helps. Summer is often a hard time to get cuttings to go, from any rose. Fall works better if B.S. hasn’t denuded them and depleted their stores regrowing.

When I look at American pillar on HMF, I see that its parentage is all wrong. Still the resemblance I noted, to me was striking. And yours is not that far off. Not all the pictures on HMF may be showing the same thing, or true colors. And I don’t know whether the listed van Fleet parentage has been verified by DNA. So who knows?


You have almost convinced me to just dig it up, but I would like a backup copy first, I have trimmed some of the Honeysuckle back but will trim very aggressivly the first chance I get.


The achenes are 1/2 to 2/3 the size of more modern seed, after opening about 5-10 and finding a dead black shrunken seed I more rapidly cut into all I had at the house they were all the same. I want to see what this plant will do with a little care and as a potential breeder, I love the blooms and foliage in this picture


This bush has only bloomed once but could be due to loss of foliage or a one shot wonder. The bloom and foliage is strikingly similar to American pillar, the stems are much more delicate than modern bushes.

Have you considered the Hybrid Musks, such as Robin Hood? Or maybe Belinda?

Here is what I suspected was a parent R. multifloral var. carnea (unconfirmed) due to proximity 15 ft in length there are several hundred yards of fence covered with it. Except for the bloom I am unable to distinguish it from wild type multifloral. I have not been able to find any hips on this bush on a quick search. I have seen this bush sport with pure white blossoms identical to the pink.


Looking at single pink Hybrid Musks–

Probably not Bukavu: 'Bukavu' Rose

Maybe Mozart? 'Mozart ' Rose Photo

The double light pink/white looks like one of the wichurana hybrids such as Dorothy Perkins. Probably its leaves are really glossy.

You’d know if it was Bukavu cause Bukavu grows like a self-supporting rocket. If anyone asked me for an idea for a rural hedge, I’d tell them that Bukavu is their answer. Its also more red and still rare in the US.

What is probably more telling of the multiflora descendant in your pic is the highly puckered foliage. This line of roses varies widely in its foliage texture but usually not the shape. For example, Ballerina is more light and puckered whereas Bukavu is quite dark, dense, flat and shiny.

Sure looks like a hybrid multiflora to me. And you couldn’t get slips with a heel to strike?! I think you need to try again. Hybrid multifloras are a snap to root. I highly recommend creating a miniature greenhouse/terrarium using a clear Rubbermaid box. I have a slide show somewhere on how to root cuttings in a Rubbermaid box. Let me see if I can figure out how to post it. Cuttings I stuck in late July have already rooted. It’s a lazy gardener’s dream.

I don’t think that is Belinda, at least not the same as the one foisted off on me. The white eye on your plant looks more prominent, and the blooms lack all the petaloids of Belinda. The plant I received labeled Belinda is subject to PM here. Here’s Belinda’s foliage:


David, here’s a link to a slide show on propagation. Sorry it’s such a large file, 3.1MB. I don’t have Adobe Acrobat and use a half-broke free imitation.

This is just one of dozens of ways to propagate from cuttings. It’s a lazy gardener’s dream.

Link: rosefog.us/TemporaryImages/PropagationX.pdf

I will try to take more cuttings on Monday, Are there any identificing marks to distinguish between R. multifloral var. carnea and Dorothy Perkins? Would anyone like a cutting or a bunch of cuttings there is plenty?

The pink with white centers rose does look like a Mozart but what would it be doing in (in not by) a fence row??? Currently it has lost all foilage, (I may try a few cuttings on it as well) I have not checked on it in a few weeks with all the rain it may have put on some new leaves.

Yeah, Dorothy PErkins foliage turns pure white after June … hehe :wink:


Thanks for the propagating lesson. Lovely pics and some very good tips. Will have to try that next June- I had 100% failure with the baggies.


If you have extra cuttings of these, this is a very easy way to propagate: basically follow Cass’s method, select a semi shady site with decent soil but not overly rich, stick your prepared cuttings directly in the soil as Cass did in her bands, firm, water, and stick a clear soda or juice bottle with its cap firmly on (they tend to get lost)and its bottom cut off over the cutting to form a cloche. Just leave alone all winter. If it is unusually dry, water by watering the “cap” and the water slides down the bottle sides into the soil. The roots will form over the winter and in spring, some will bloom under the bottle. When it starts to warm up, gradually remove the cap for a few hours increasingly keeping it off, til after a week or so, leave it off, then after another week remove the bottle, the another week pot up. This method is very easy and requires little work since nature basically does all the work but it takes all winter. This is my usual propagation method and works well. I live in Richmond, VA and for us, the next 6 weeks is the perfect time to root rose cuttings.

Good luck!

Jim P.