Dog Rose (Rosa cannia) Seeds
Rosa canina hips can be used to make jam, jelly, syrup, marmalade and wine. Homemade rose-hip syrup is delicious and well worth making. It is an excellent natural source of vitamin C. It also contains vitamins A, D and E, and antioxidants.
Sowing: Late winter/late spring and late summer/autumn.
Pour warm water over seeds, let them soak for 24 hours until swelling is noticeable.
Seeds can be left to go through the seasons naturally or germination hastened by “Stratifying” (imitating the seasons)
“Hastening Germination” by stratification: Soak the seeds as above. Take a piece of moistened kitchen towel and fold it into four, place the seeds inside and place the whole lot into a small ziplock bag. Place this inside the fridge. Fridge’s are usually set at 4°C (39°F), this is a perfect temperature to simulate “winter” Check the bag occasionally; plant out any seeds that may have germinated. Leave for 12 week, then to simulate “spring” simply bring the bag out of the fridge, place in an area that is around 10°C (50°F)
Rose seeds sometimes need to go through two winters – so don’t throw away the tray too soon, simply place it in a shady part of the garden, check it occasionally - I have had many “surprise successes” this way, with seed that I have given up on!
When seedlings have their first pair of true leaves and are large enough to handle, transplant into 7.5cm (3in) pots. Pot on seedlings as required and grow on indoors before planting outside permanently.
Pruning: Late autumn to early spring
Maintenance: In the first two years, cut out only dead, diseased or damaged wood.
Renewal: Cut back one or two of the oldest stems to 30 to 45cm (12 to 18in) above ground and repeat every one to three years. This rose blooms on old wood so take care when pruning.