Medium to tall shrub 0.5-3 m tall, spreading by rhizomes and often thicket-forming; stems stout to spindly, erect to arching, with a pair of large prickles (thorns) at each node, usually lacking internodal prickles; mature stems blackish.
Alternate, deciduous, odd-pinnately compound, the leaf-stalk and axis glandular-hairy or short-hairy; leaflets 5 or 7 (9), elliptic to egg-shaped, 1-7 cm long, coarsely single- or double-toothed, somewhat glandular-short-hairy beneath; stipules usually glandular-blunt-toothed.
Inflorescence of usually single, sometimes 2 or 3, stalked flowers on lateral branchlets; corollas pink, saucer-shaped, large (4-8 cm across), the petals 5, (2) 2.5-4 cm long; calyces smooth or glandular-bristly, 5-lobed, the lobes lanceolate, 1.5-4 cm long, long-tapering and narrowing then flaring below the tip, persistent; ovaries superior but enclosed in the urn-shaped floral tube (hypanthium); stamens numerous.
Achenes, numerous, stiffly long-hairy on one side, enclosed by the fleshy hypanthium, which ripens into a purplish-red, globe- to pear-shaped hip 1-2 cm long.
Two varieties occur in BC:
1. Leaflets doubly saw-toothed, the teeth gland-tipped; infrastipular prickles becoming much enlarged and flattened toward base; plants mostly from west of Coast-Cascade Mountains................. var. nutkana
1. Leaflets singly saw-toothed, the teeth not gland-tiped; prickles rarely enlarged and flattened; plants mostly from east of Coast-Cascade Mountains..................var. hispida Fern.
If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.
Illustration Source: The Illustrated Flora of British Columbia
Synonyms and Alternate Names:
Rosa nutkana C. Presl