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Field Rose

Rosa arvensis

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
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Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Rosaceae (Rose)
Also in this family:
Acute Leaf-lobed Lady's-mantle, Alpine Cinquefoil, Alpine Lady's-mantle, Ampfield Cotoneaster, Arran Service Tree, Arran Whitebeam, Barren Strawberry, Bastard Agrimony, Bastard Service Tree, Bearberry Cotoneaster, Bird Cherry, Blackthorn, Bloody Whitebeam, Bramble, Bristol Whitebeam, Broad-leaved Whitebeam, Broadtooth Lady's-mantle, Bronze Pirri-pirri-bur, Bullace Plum, Bullate Cotoneaster, Burnet Rose, Catacol Whitebeam, Caucasian Lady's-mantle, Cheddar Whitebeam, Cherry Laurel, Cherry Plum, Chinese Photinia, Cloudberry, Clustered Lady's-mantle, Common Agrimony, Common Hawthorn, Common Lady's-mantle, Common Medlar, Common Ninebark, Common Whitebeam, Crab Apple, Creeping Chinese Bramble, Creeping Cinquefoil, Crimean Lady's-mantle, Cultivated Apple, Cultivated Pear, Cut-leaved Blackberry, Damson, Devon Whitebeam, Dewberry, Diel's Cotoneaster, Dog Rose, Doward Whitebeam, Dropwort, Elm-leaved Bramble, English Whitebeam, Entire-leaved Cotoneaster, False Salmonberry, Firethorn, Fodder Burnet, Fragrant Agrimony, Franchet's Cotoneaster, Garden Lady's-mantle, Garden Strawberry, Giant Meadowsweet, Glaucous Dog Rose, Goatsbeard Spiraea, Gough's Rock Whitebeam, Great Burnet, Greengage Plum, Grey-leaved Whitebeam, Hairless Lady's-mantle, Hairy Lady's-mantle, Hautbois Strawberry, Himalayan Blackberry, Himalayan Cotoneaster, Himalayan Whitebeam, Hoary Cinquefoil, Hollyberry Cotoneaster, Hupeh Rowan, Hybrid Cinquefoil, Hybrid Geum, Irish Whitebeam, Japanese Cherry, Japanese Quince, Japanese Rose, Jew's Mallow, Juneberry, Lancaster Whitebeam, Late Cotoneaster, Least Lady's-mantle, Least Whitebeam, Leigh Woods Whitebeam, Ley's Whitebeam, Liljefor's Whitebeam, Littleleaf Cotoneaster, Llangollen Whitebeam, Llanthony Whitebeam, Lleyn Cotoneaster, Loganberry, Many-flowered Rose, Margaret's Whitebeam, Marsh Cinquefoil, Meadowsweet, Midland Hawthorn, Mougeot's Whitebeam, Mountain Ash, Mountain Avens, Mountain Sibbaldia, Moupin's Cotoneaster, No Parking Whitebeam, Ocean Spray, Orange Whitebeam, Pale Bridewort, Pale Lady's-mantle, Parsley Piert, Pirri-pirri-bur, Plymouth Pear, Portuguese Laurel, Purple-flowered Raspberry, Quince, Raspberry, Rock Cinquefoil, Rock Lady's-mantle, Rock Whitebeam, Round-leaved Dog Rose, Round-leaved Whitebeam, Rum Cherry, Russian Cinquefoil, Salad Burnet, Sargent's Rowan, Scannell's Whitebeam, Service Tree, Sharp-toothed Whitebeam, Sherard's Downy Rose, Shining Lady's-mantle, Ship Rock Whitebeam, Short-styled Rose, Shrubby Cinquefoil, Silver Lady's-mantle, Silverweed, Slender Parsley Piert, Slender-spined Bramble, Small-flowered Sweetbriar, Small-leaved Sweetbriar, Soft Downy Rose, Somerset Whitebeam, Sorbaria, Sour Cherry, Southern Downy Rose, Southern Lady's-mantle, Spineless Acaena, Spring Cinquefoil, St. Lucie's Cherry, Steeplebush, Stern's Cotoneaster, Stirton's Whitebeam, Stone Bramble, Sulphur Cinquefoil, Swedish Service Tree, Swedish Whitebeam, Sweet Briar, Symond's Yat Whitebeam, Tengyueh Cotoneaster, Thimbleberry, Thin-leaved Whitebeam, Tibetan Cotoneaster, Tormentil, Trailing Tormentil, Tree Cotoneaster, Trefoil Cinquefoil, Twin-cliffs Whitebeam, Two-spined Acaena, Wall Cotoneaster, Water Avens, Waterer's Cotoneaster, Waxy Lady's-mantle, Welsh Cotoneaster, Welsh Whitebeam, White Burnet, White's Whitebeam, White-stemmed Bramble, Wild Cherry, Wild Pear, Wild Plum, Wild Service Tree, Wild Strawberry, Willmott's Whitebeam, Willow-leaved Bridewort, Willow-leaved Cotoneaster, Wineberry, Wood Avens, Wye Whitebeam, Yellow-flowered Strawberry
Deciduous shrub
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
3 metres tall
Gardens, hedgerows, parks, roadsides, scrub, woodland.

White, 5 petals
Creamy-white, cup-shaped flowers. Each flower has numerous yellow stamens. Sepals are often purple-tinged. Pollinated by flies, bees, butterflies and moths.
The fruits are orange-red, egg-shaped rose hips. The hips are smaller and rounder than those of the similar looking Dog Rose (Rosa canina). The seeds ripen from October to December.
5 to 7-pinnate leaves. The leaflets are toothed. Long, arching, thorny stems.
The flowers are slightly fragrant.
Other Names:
Briar, Briar Bush, Briar Rose, Brier, European Wild Rose, Shakespeare's Musk, White-flowered Trailing Rose.
Frequency (UK):

Similar Species

Other Information


Rosa arvensis, also known as the field rose or the European wild rose, is a species of rose native to Europe and Asia. It is a deciduous shrub that typically grows to around 3-5 feet tall and wide. The leaves are dark green, and the flowers are small, single and typically pink or red in color. The flowers are followed by small red fruit, known as hips.

It is hardy in USDA zones 3-8. It is tolerant of a wide range of soils and can tolerate full sun or partial shade. It is a popular ornamental shrub in cultivation for its attractive foliage and flowers, and it is often used for hedging or in mixed shrub borders. They require regular watering and fertilizing, and they should be pruned annually to promote healthy growth. It is also prone to pests and diseases, such as blackspot and powdery mildew, so it is important to regularly check for and treat these issues. In addition, it is also used as a rootstock for other roses, and is also used to make rose hip tea and jelly.


The Field Rose, also known as Rosa arvensis, is a beautiful and widely distributed wild rose species found in many parts of the world, including Europe, Asia, and North America. It is a member of the Rosaceae family and is known for its stunningly fragrant, white or pink flowers and its many medicinal properties.

Appearance and Characteristics

The Field Rose is a deciduous shrub that can grow up to 3 meters in height. Its leaves are green and pinnate, with 5-7 serrated leaflets. The plant produces numerous thorny stems that bear clusters of fragrant flowers in the summer. The flowers are usually white or pink, with five petals and a yellow center. The fruit of the Field Rose is a small, round, and bright red rosehip that is edible and high in vitamin C.

Habitat and Distribution

The Field Rose is a highly adaptable species and can be found in a variety of habitats, including forests, meadows, hillsides, and along riverbanks. It is widely distributed across Europe, Asia, and North America, and is often found growing in large clusters or thickets. In the United Kingdom, the Field Rose is a common sight in hedgerows and along the edges of fields and woods.

Cultural Significance

The Field Rose has been cultivated and appreciated for its beauty and fragrance for centuries. In folklore and literature, the rose has often been associated with love, beauty, and purity. The ancient Greeks and Romans used roses in their religious ceremonies and festivals, and the rose has been a symbol of love and passion in poetry and art throughout the ages.

Medicinal Properties

The Field Rose has a long history of use in traditional medicine. The rosehip contains high levels of vitamin C, making it a valuable remedy for colds and flu. The rosehip also contains antioxidants, which are thought to help prevent and treat various diseases, including heart disease and cancer. Additionally, the petals of the Field Rose can be used to make a soothing and fragrant tea that is said to have calming and relaxing properties.

Gardening Tips

The Field Rose is an easy-to-grow plant that is well-suited to many different garden settings. It prefers a sunny location with well-drained soil and can tolerate a range of soil types. The plant can be propagated by seed or cuttings, and requires little maintenance once established. It can be pruned in the fall to remove dead or diseased wood and to promote new growth. In the garden, the Field Rose is often used as a hedging plant or as a decorative shrub in borders and mixed plantings.

Field Rose, or Rosa arvensis, is a beautiful and versatile plant with many valuable properties. Its stunning flowers, adaptability, and medicinal uses make it a treasured species in many parts of the world. Whether enjoyed in the garden or in traditional medicine, the Field Rose is a wonderful addition to any landscape.

Uses of Field Rose

The Field Rose has many uses beyond its beauty and medicinal properties. The rosehip, which is the fruit of the plant, can be used to make jams, jellies, and teas. It is also a popular ingredient in herbal and medicinal supplements, as it is believed to have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. The rosehip oil, extracted from the seeds of the fruit, is used in cosmetics and skincare products, as it is rich in vitamins A and C and has moisturizing and regenerative effects on the skin.

Conservation Status

The Field Rose is considered a species of least concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). However, like many wild rose species, it is threatened by habitat loss and fragmentation caused by urbanization, agriculture, and forestry. The plant is also susceptible to fungal diseases, such as blackspot and rust, which can cause significant damage and reduce its health and vigor.

Tips for Ethical Harvesting

If you are interested in harvesting Field Rose for its medicinal or culinary properties, it is important to do so in an ethical and sustainable manner. Here are some tips for responsible harvesting:

  • Only harvest from healthy and abundant plants.
  • Leave at least half of the fruit or flowers on each plant to ensure that it can continue to reproduce and grow.
  • Do not harvest from protected or rare species, or from areas where harvesting is prohibited or discouraged.
  • Use sharp and clean tools to avoid damaging the plant, and avoid pulling or breaking the stems or branches.
  • Respect the natural environment and leave the area as you found it.

In conclusion, the Field Rose, or Rosa arvensis, is a fascinating and versatile plant with many benefits and uses. From its fragrant flowers and edible fruit to its medicinal properties and ecological value, the Field Rose is a treasure of the natural world that deserves our attention and protection. Whether enjoyed in the garden, in the kitchen, or in traditional medicine, the Field Rose is a plant worth exploring and celebrating.

Cultivation and Pruning

The Field Rose is a hardy and adaptable plant that is easy to grow and maintain. It prefers a sunny location with well-drained soil and can tolerate a range of soil types, including clay, loam, and sandy soil. The plant can be propagated by seed or cuttings, and should be watered regularly during the first year of growth to establish a healthy root system.

The Field Rose benefits from pruning, which should be done in the fall after the plant has finished flowering. This helps to remove dead or diseased wood, and to promote new growth in the spring. When pruning, it is important to use sharp and clean tools to avoid damaging the plant, and to cut just above a bud or branch to encourage healthy and vigorous growth.

Pests and Diseases

Like all plants, the Field Rose is susceptible to various pests and diseases, including aphids, spider mites, and fungal diseases such as blackspot and rust. To prevent infestations and diseases, it is important to maintain good plant hygiene, to water the plant regularly, and to keep the area around the plant free of debris and weeds. Additionally, natural predators such as ladybugs and lacewings can help to control pest populations, and organic insecticides and fungicides can be used to treat infestations and diseases if necessary.

Final Thoughts

The Field Rose, or Rosa arvensis, is a beautiful and valuable plant with many uses and benefits. Its fragrant flowers, edible fruit, and medicinal properties make it a popular species for gardening, cooking, and traditional medicine. Its adaptability and hardiness make it a good choice for many different settings, from hedgerows and gardens to natural areas and parks. Whether appreciated for its beauty, its utility, or its ecological value, the Field Rose is a plant that deserves our attention and appreciation.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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