The wild rose of summer celebrated in song and verse, the flowers are typically found in long established hedges where they enliven our roadsides with their large blooms, which vary in colour from white to deep pink.
In Autumn, the rose hips develop, colourful red containers for the small seeds within. Small birds are able to extract the seeds, in spite of irritating protective hairs within the rose hip.
Other species, and small mammals such as field mice, eat the flesh of the rose hip itself.
Traditionally, they were harvested and used for rose hip cordial, syrup or wine. Rose hips are a rich source of vitamin C.
There are a number of other less common species widely distributed around the country.
Among these are the Burnet rose (Rosa pimpinellifolia), a small wild rose, is found on coastal sand dunes and at a few inland sites also. it has a cream flower followed by very dark hips.
It can be grown in free-draining sites in gardens, but should perhaps not be introduced outside its normal habitat.