Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Old Garden Rose, Species
Rosa gallica officinalis 'Apothecary's Rose'

Family: Rosaceae (ro-ZAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rosa (RO-zuh) (Info)
Species: gallica officinalis
Cultivar: Apothecary's Rose
Additional cultivar information: (aka Officinalis, Old Red Damask, Red Provence, Red Rose of Lancaster)
Registered or introduced: pre 1160

Synonym:Rosa gallica duplex
Synonym:Rosa gallica maxima
Synonym:Rosa gallica plena

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8 members have or want this plant for trade.

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36-48 in. (90-120 cm)
4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)
USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

Bloom Color:
Deep pink (dp)

Bloom Shape:

Flower Fragrance:
Very Fragrant

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer


Patent Information:

Other Details:

Pruning Instructions:
Blooms on old wood; prune after flowering

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings
From semi-hardwood cuttings
From hardwood cuttings
By grafting
By budding

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By Kathleen
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There are a total of 13 photos.
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5 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive stanwell On Jul 3, 2011, stanwell from NW of Boston
United States wrote:

In full bloom in several of the museum gardens at Strawbery Banke, Portsmouth NH, 2 July 2011. Absolutely covered with flowers. Hard to remember that it's a once-bloomer and that its season may be very short. 'Gather ye rosebuds while ye may'

Positive NHLady On Jun 26, 2010, NHLady from Exeter, NH (Zone 5a) wrote:

I purchased this plant from the Monticello plant shop in Virginia several years ago. Apparently Thomas Jefferson grew this rose. I've had to move it a couple of times to find the right amount of sun. It's doing very well at last. A person who helps with garden maintenance commented that it looks and behaves somewhat like a rosa rugosa. I can see the similarities, esp. the thorny stems and its prolific growing habit. I love it for its fragrance and somewhat rangy appearance. It's definitely not a neat plant, although I suppose it could be if I pruned it. It's just perfect the way it is.

Positive einhverfr On May 17, 2010, einhverfr from Chelan, WA wrote:

This is a classic hedge-forming gallica which blooms profusely once a year. The petals make nice additions to salads, etc (traditionally used in medicines), and the hips are also edible as they turn orange. As they become soft, they can be harvested, dried, and saved for later.

Positive val0822 On May 16, 2009, val0822 from Media, PA wrote:

Have had this growing for several years. I planted it for the historical aspect. Beautiful flowers but the bloom period is kind of short and then it looks a little weedy. Very tough and fairly well behaved.

Positive sassy55 On Dec 23, 2002, sassy55 wrote:

The Apothecary Rose is highly fragrant, and easy to grow. It is a bushy, upright plant, about 4'x3'. It is said to be hardy to Zone 3, but not north of there. The bush is shade tolerant, but watch out for mildew. History tells us that this rose came to Europe in the 1600's. The petals from the Apothecary Rose are used in potpourri.

Neutral Kathleen On Feb 21, 2001, Kathleen from Panama, NY (Zone 5a) wrote:

This rose was used by apothecaries as an ingredient in medicines and beauty mixtures. It has blunt buds, 3 inch blossoms of a deep rose with 15 petals and bright yellow stamens. It grows upright to 2 feet.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Fayetteville, Arkansas
Ventura, California
Somerset, Kentucky
Exeter, New Hampshire
Middleburgh, New York
Columbus, Ohio
Portland, Oregon
Media, Pennsylvania
Columbia, South Carolina
Sandy, Utah
Chelan, Washington

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