Can you identify this rose?

– Posted in: Plant info

My neighbor’s rose

Image of small, double, pale pink rose
With our neighbor’s permission, my daughter dug up a piece of this rose and planted it in one of our garden beds last year. My neighbor’s house is over a hundred years old and it was in the garden there when she moved in over twenty years ago. The blossom pictured above measured 2 1/2 inches. The bud was very pointed, but I missed the day it first opened. In this photo it’s been open one day, maybe two. Do you know its name?

The rose from my sister

Do you know the name of this rose?
This rose also came from the garden of an old house, a rental property belonging to my sister and her family. She brought a piece of it to me. The largest flowers are 3 inches wide, but most of them are closer to 2 1/2 inches. You can smell rose fragrance if you stick your nose right into the flower, but they aren’t especially fragrant.
When they first open, they are a deep pink color:
The flowers are a deep pink when first open
As the flower ages, it also fades:
The blossom color fades as the flower ages
Any ideas? It could even be the rootstock for a hybrid rose that died. In their original locations, both roses have been thriving in benign neglect and zone 4 winters.

About the Author

Kathy Purdy is a colchicum evangelist, converting unsuspecting gardeners into colchicophiles. She would be delighted to speak to your group about colchicums or other gardening topics. Kathy’s been writing since 4th grade, gardening since high school, and blogging since 2002.

Comments on this entry are closed.

MotherGosling November 23, 2008, 5:52 am

Kathy, I’m sorry i spelled your name wrong.

MotherGosling November 22, 2008, 9:33 am

Cathy, i dont know if you have found the name of the pink rose you mentioned in July – the one your daughter dug up – by now, but i was hunting around to identify one of my own roses and i saw this picture that looked very like yours. Its a rose called “Christine Wright” and you can see pics of it in a site called Its a big soft floppy looking pink rose like yours. I hope this reaches you and helps. MotherGosling

Lori August 1, 2008, 7:39 am

Hmm. I have no idea what the first rose is, but for the second I can offer a few guesses:


Max Graff

Sweet Briar (this one’s a long shot– too thorny & leaves are too rough)

It makes me nostalgic– there was a once-blooming wild rose that bloomed in the ditches in WI with similar flowers and many, many more thorns. I tried to dig one up one time, and boy, did that not go well.

Terry July 22, 2008, 7:07 pm

This first picture looks like a rose that is in my SE Michigan backyard and has been so badly treated over the years. When I first moved here some 27 years ago it was in the back corner growing up and over the chain link fence, and was beautiful. It gave off tons of flowers all summer that smelled heavenly!

My brother in law tried killing it when he planted a vegetable garden back there, but it would still come up, although he kept cutting it down. Then, later, he planted privet hedges all around the yard.

At first the rose would keep coming up. But as the hedges got bigger and bigger, I forgot about that rose bush although periodically I would see those fragrant pale pink flowers peeking through.

Then last year, I didn’t see any roses back behind all the privet hedge. I dug around back there until I found some small branches, and cut some and started new rose bushes in a better spot. They are small this year, but did give a few flowers. Then this year, one long branch grew out of the hedges (that are now 8 feet tall!), and had one lonely rose on it.

I am determined to get this wonderful rose blooming in several places around the garden. Apparently, it can’t be killed! I don’t know what the name is either, and would love to know.

Barbara July 19, 2008, 6:49 am

Like you, I love roses…grew up with parents who were gardeners. Daddy grew roses and I always said they were too much work…would never bother with them…oh well. Now they are my passion.
Mine suffer serious neglect…I work full-time and with the heat here,Florida–I don’t have energy to do much till it’s cooler. Love rooting them tho…have done it numerous times.

Annie in Austin July 15, 2008, 8:44 pm

I don’t really know what it is, Kathy – but that first one reminded me of a rose I fell in love with when I saw it in the garden of a rose collector back in Illinois.
It was called ‘Celsiana’ and was hardy through a midwestern winter.

Annie at the Transplantable Rose

Dee/reddirtramblings July 14, 2008, 1:03 pm

Kathy, it’s difficult to tell just from the bloom, but we can rule out Teas, and Chinas bec/they aren’t cold hardy enough. Hybrid Perpetuals, Centifolias and Bourbons have too many petals. I just don’t know. Difficult to tell from just a bloom. Need shrub size and growth style. Are leaves shiny or dull, rough or smooth? Are the buds pointed? You did say the above one was. I just don’t know. I’m sorry. I looked through all of my antique rose books, but didn’t find anything definitive.~~Dee

Kathy Purdy July 14, 2008, 1:58 pm

Dee, thanks for trying. I will try to provide more information and update the blog post.

Victoria July 14, 2008, 7:39 am

l saw the post and hoped to see a photo of the yellow rose Talitha also dug up! Did that make it? Yes, dear readers, l have the great good fortune of being Kathy’s neighbor and friend for over 20 years. She has always been a wealth of information and kindess. Our children swam together in our brook when they were young, and she looked after my children during a family crisis.

The pink rose has a lovely fragrance. lt was the favorite of Libby, the elderly lady we bought that farm from. She didn’t know the name either, it was well established when she moved there in the 1930’s. The yellow rose l named “The Yellow Rose of S.St..” 😉 Yes, l prefer plants that thrive with my periodic periods of benign neglect (and fleeting guilt).

l have since moved back to the family farm where l grew up. Kathy, l’d love your thoughts on reclaiming my grandmother’s English garden! Please come for tea soon, email or my number is listed.

God bless,

Sheila July 13, 2008, 10:54 pm

The rose from your sister might be ‘Betty Prior’.

Joanne July 13, 2008, 10:10 pm

I don’t know the name of this pretty rose, but how nice that you share plants with your neighbors. It’s a nice connection, with flowers!