Woods Rose

(Rosa woodsii)

Important ID's

  • Small, toothed compound leaves
  • Thorny branches
  • Large white or pink five petaled flowers (often with the classic rose scent)
  • Bright red-orange berries, known as 'rosehips'


Animal Use

  • Flowers are an important nectar source for bees
  • Rosehips are a very important berry for a number of bird species, especially during late fall - early winter


Human Use

  • Native peoples often used this plant thoroughly, from peeling the roots to the nutritious rosehips
  • Early Utah settlers often made rosehip jelly, as they would do with many Eastern US species.


Rosehips are tart and tasty, but full of furry seeds and have a fiberous texture as they age. They mature in Mid-August but remain on the shrub through winter. Not astringent and very high in Vitamin C they are a nutricious and numerous trailside snack. They make excellent jelly, syrup and even a sweet and sour tea when found dry in winter. Rose petals are also edible but not very interesting eaten straight; they make good flavoring for syrup and vinegar.

Flowers bloom early Summer and flavored best before midday, rosehips mature in Mid-August.

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