Rosa californica

California Wild Rose

This Rose grows along open stream banks, wooded hills, and coastal sand dunes and bluffs. The California Wild Rose can take full sun and has a bright-colored flower and hip. It makes an excellent hedge, spreading by underground runners to form a thicket.

Wildlife value: A variety of birds animals eat the flesh and seeds of rose hips. The fruit stays on the shrub through much of winter and provides food when other sources are scarce. Mammals and hoofed browsers often eat other parts of the plant. Thickets of wild Roses offer choice nesting and protective cover for birds and small mammals.

Uses: Rose hips, which have 24 times as much Vitamin C as oranges, were used by Native Americans to make a tea for the relief of colds. Today rose hips are used commercially to make Vitamin C tablets. The petals and hips can also be used for tea, eaten raw, or made into jellies. Wood Rose hips are also a source of calcium, phosphorus, and iron.