Rosa Rugosa

As I mentioned in a previous post, one of my favourite flowers of the moment is rosa rugosa.  

rosa rugosa and bee

I am not a huge fan of roses, most seem to be grown for their visual impact these days, whereas I thought that the whole point of a rose was the scent.  I therefore don’t have any roses in my garden at the moment.  That said, however, rosa rugosa is a huge exception and the scent around the industrial estate at the moment is divine.  (If you see a short person snorting the hedgerows of a Daventry industrial estate then that is probably me.)

According to Wikipedia, Rosa Rugosa is apparently a native of eastern asia but has been introduced to Europe where it is used in landscaping and is particularly useful in coastal areas, as well as being pretty hardy it is also highly tolerant of salt.  (This latter property also makes it useful to plant near roads that are regularly in need of deicing with salt.)  The colour of the bloom varies from white to dark pink, and double and single cultivars are known.

The rose is also popular with bees, gives colour lasting well into autumn with bright yellow autumn leaves and bright red hips that are packed with vitamin C.

Reasons to take a walk.

OK, so we all know that walking to and from work is good for the environment and makes us healthier (unless we get run over by a lorry). I also maintain that not only does it reduce stress, but makes our lives more interesting, allowing us to notice the nature all around us that we usually don’t even see.

For example, the other Friday I had a bit of a stressy day at work, but, fortunately I get to walk home afterwards. After walking through the gate, the first thing I am hit by is the perfume of the rosa rugosa that is planted as one passes between industrial estates. If you don’t know what this smells like, then I can only describe it as the scent you expect from a rose (but which you rarely get these days) but more so, it hits you before you see the rose itself, which, lets face it, is a bit of a messy looking thing. This is probably my favourite scent (although honeysuckle can give it a run for its money). Straight away, mood lifted.

Dog RosesA cluster of Elderflowers

Then, as I walk along, listening to the song thrush, I find the dog roses in amongst the hedges (little scent, but look pretty), and the flag iris by the lake. As I get to the old railway track I can hear the chiffchaff calling, the trees rustling in the wind and, strangely enough, a red legged partridge sat on top of someone’s roof shouting away, no wonder they get shot, that would have to be one of the most annoying sounds.

So, with a smile on my face from encountering such an unlikely bird sat on a roof top, I wander past more dog roses, hear families of long tailed tits chirring in the trees, and, wander past the fluffy clouds of elder flowers. Not a bad way to end the week.