I planted a Swamp Rose, Rosa palustris, last spring of 2010 along the bed that parallels my potager. It is planted in an area that receives full sun. The soil is clay but is very wet in spring and after heavy rains. It is considered a shrub rose and should grow to be about 6-8′ tall. It’s habit is upright with bushy-branched, thorny stems. In just one year it has bloomed!
I have never grown roses before and figured it would be good to begin with wild roses, although I don’t do anything for this rose. I am amazed at its growth in spite of my neglect. I have some suckering shoots that I may try to transplant in other areas of my garden to see how it does. I prefer the open blooms of wild roses and I felt that my garden would not be complete without a rose, or two, or maybe three … They smell good, really good.
There’s lots of insect activity. In the evening the petals close up. This morning I witnessed an impatient bumble bee force open the closed petals to get inside. This rose should also produce hips which I will leave to overwinter for the birds, and because their bright red color will be pretty dusted with snow. Oh, did I mention the leaves turn a brilliant red in the fall? I am very happy with this native addition to my garden – you might be, too.