Horticulture and Landscape Architecture

Hardy Plants for Waterwise Landscapes

Rosa rugosa
Rugosa rose

Rosa rugosa 'Frau Dagmar Hastrup' (C.H. Pearson-Mims)
Rosa rugosa var. rubra (C.H. Pearson-Mims)
Rosa rugosa fruit (C.H. Pearson-Mims)

Plant form

Deciduous, thorny, dense, mounding shrub.


3-6 feet tall, with similar spread. 

Leaves and stems

Bright, glossy green, compound leaves with a crinkled (rugose!) appearance. May develop attractive fall color, including red, orange, yellow, and bronze.


Bloom begins in early summer and continues throughout the season until frost. May bloom continuously or with brief rest periods. Flowers may be white, pink, reddish purple, or yellow, depending on cultivar. Some cultivars have doubled blossoms. Most are highly fragrant and attract bees. Flowers are 2 to 4 inches wide.


Most cultivars produce showy fruit called "hips." The hips are bright reddish orange and can be more than 1 inch across. Plants can have both fruits and flowers at the same time.

Native area

Eastern Asia.

Water use


Culture and maintenance

Grows well in a wide range of soil types, including sandy ones. Withstands difficult conditions, including salt, drought, and extreme cold. Rugosa roses don't require the specialized pruning that the more traditional roses, such as hybrid teas and grandifloras, need. An occasional branch may need to be removed to maintain overall shape and appearance. Relatively insect- and disease-free, depending on cultivar. May get aphids.


Full sun or partial shade.


USDA Zone 2


We have had success with these rugosas: 'Frau Dagmar Hastrup' and var. rubra.


Try to find plants grown on their own roots, to avoid problems with winter injury at the graft union.


Life is good at WSU.

Secondary content can be almost anything. If you are not using this region delete all the content that is in between the div tags with the id ="additional".

A unique richness of students, faculty, location, activities, and organizations creates a full, lively student life at the University. This section gives you the insider's view on student life and a sampling of the opportunities here.

"Glimpses." Students talk about life at WSU

These brief posts are written by WSU students to give you a personal look through their window on campus life.


Horticulture and Landscape Architecture , PO Box 646414, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-6414, 509-335-9502, Contact Us