How to grow Rose Hips

Rose Hips

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Rose hips are the seedpods of roses.

We don’t often see them because we usually prune finished flowers to encourage more blooms. If you leave the last roses on the bush, you’ll start to see pretty reddish balls start to develop on the stem tips.They are beautiful additions to autumn-themed posies, and are also edible. Rugosa roses are said to have the most delicious of all rose hips. Harvest rose hips that haven’t been sprayed with pesticides. If you live in a cold area, wait until after the first frost, which intensifies and sweetens the flavour. Rose hips can be used, like crabapples, in jams, jellies, sauces and tea.

Rose hips are the round or oval bright orange, red, or sometimes purple, fruits that form on pollinated roses in late summer and fall. Depending on the species, they can grow in clusters (like holly or elderberry), in small groups of 3 to 4 hips, or as a large, single display.

Most hips are round, but some may be elongated or even bottle-shaped. Abundant rose hip displays usually come from plants with single or semi-double blooms. Almost all roses have the ability to set hips, but some types, like hybrid teas, have so many petals that bees and other pollinating insects cannot reach the centre.

Rich in vitamin C, rose hips are used to make herbal tea, jams, jelly, syrups, or soup. Only consume rose hips grown organically—never those sprayed with chemicals, particularly systemics.

Tips for hips:

  • Select roses with single, semi-double, or otherwise cupped-bloom form.
  • Stop pruning after April
  • Provide adequate irrigation with good drainage.
  • Encourage pollinators, like bees and other insects, to visit your roses by creating a naturalized edge or hedgerow.
  • Allow blossoms to fade and fall off of the plant naturally.

Uses for hips:

  • Clip single or clusters of rose hips and use in floral arrangements, wreaths, and holiday garland.
  • Wash, remove stems, and coarsely chop for use in recipes to make jams, jellies, juices, and more. Never use rose petals or hips sprayed with chemicals in any food product.


The List: Best Roses with Hips

Species / Near Species Roses:

  • Alba Maxima (white)
  • Kiftsgate (white)
  • Rosa glauca (medium pink)
  • Rosa moschata (white)
  • Rosa moyesii ‘Geranium’
  • Rosa Mundi (pink blend/striped)
  • Rosa rugosa (mauve)
  • Rosa rugosa alba (white)
  • Rosa rugosa rubra (deep pink)
  • Rosa woodsii (medium pink)

Landscape / Shrub Roses:

  • Adelaide Hoodless (deep pink)
  • Bonica (medium pink)
  • Carefree Beauty (medium pink)
  • Carefree Delight (pink blend)
  • Cassie (white)
  • George Vancouver (medium red)
  • Golden Wings (light yellow)
  • Happy Chappy (yellow blend)
  • Knock Out (red blend/light red)
  • Lyda Rose (white/pink blend)
  • Morden Centennial (medium pink)
  • Pink Robin (medium pink)
  • Seafoam (white)
  • Floorshow Series: Crimson, Purple, Lavender, Orange, Rosy, Yellow
  • Meidiland Series: Alba, Coral, Fire, Magic, Mystic, Pink, Red

Hybrid Rugosa Roses:

  • Ann Endt (dark red)
  • Belle Poitevine (medium pink)
  • Blanc Double de Coubert (white)
  • Charles Albanel (medium red)
  • Dart’s Dash (deep red/mauve)
  • Delicata (light pink/mauve)
  • Dwarf Pavement (medium pink)
  • Foxi Pavement (deep pink)
  • Fru Dagmar Hastrup (light pink)
  • Hansa (medium red/mauve)
  • Jens Munk (medium pink)
  • Magnifica (dark red/mauve)
  • Moje Hammarberg (mauve)
  • Pierette Pavement (deep pink)
  • Purple Pavement (mauve)
  • Scabrosa (mauve)
  • Snow Pavement (white)

Rambling Roses:

  • Darlow’s Enigma (white)
  • Ethel (light pink)
  • Guirlande d’Amour (white)
  • Kew Rambler (medium pink)
  • Newport Fairy (pink blend)
  • Paul’s Himalayan Musk (pink)
  • Red Max Graf (medium red)

Climbers / Climbing Shrub Roses:

  • Dortmund (medium red/ white eye)
  • Fourth of July (red blend/striped)
  • Love’s Song (deep orange-pink)
  • Paul’s Lemon Pillar (light yellow)
  • The Magician (yellow blend)
  • Summer Wine (orange-pink)
  • Westerland (apricot blend)
  • White New Dawn (white)

Hybrid Musk Roses:

  • Ballerina (medium pink)
  • Buff Beauty (apricot blend)
  • Felicia (pink blend)
  • Penelope (light pink)
  • Sally Holmes (white)

David Austin® English Roses

  • Constance Spry (light pink)
  • John Clare (deep pink/light red)
  • Peach Blossom (light pink)
  • Scintillation (light pink)
  • Shropshire Lass (light pink)

Additional Roses with Showy Hips

  • Bourbon Queen (pink blend)
  • CLEcottoncandy (medium pink)
  • Complicata (pink blend)
  • Dainty Bess (light pink)
  • Earth Song (deep pink/pink blend)
  • Eddie’s Jewel (medium red)
  • John Cabot (medium red)
  • Kiese (medium red)
  • Lady Penzance (orange-pink blend)
  • Royal Carpet (mauve)
  • Seven Sisters (pink blend)


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About this article

Author: Linda Ross