Friday, October 2, 2009

Revisiting the Wild Rose

Let us revisit with the wild roses of the cedar glades.
This past year they have grown thick and full
in the wet and cool weather we've had in this
"year that summer never came" of 2009.
Rosa carolina ,curled petals

and rosa multiflora,sometimes pink
are quite common in the area, Beautiful and
although invasive in many areas,
their numbers are few in the glades.
Rosa carolina come in many forms,
and many in the glades seem dwarfed,
seen blooming and fruiting inches off the surface.

Rosa corolina, white form

The hips from both roses are sweet and edible, and contain
lots of vitamin c which means soury goodness.

Here's this year's rose hip harvest from a distant relative,
rosa rugosa ,hips.

since i dont like to let things go to waste these
tangy sour little goodies are going into treats for the holidays,
along with other gathered wild foods like hickory nuts and persimmons.
We'll soon say goodbye to madame rose for the season here in the Nashville
basin, and await her grand displays of next year, she's always been a favorite
of mankind around the globe, and her family brings us everything from apples
to loquats ,furniture and fragrances.

For extra credit bring me one of these rosa
carolina blooms from the feild next spring,
and i'll give you a zillion dollars!


The Galloping Gardener said...

Lovely pictures!

WiseAcre said...

I'd double the zillion dollars for a Rosa
carolina just like that one. That yellow one is hard to believe :)

tina said...

Lovely roses! It's been such a great year for gardening.

Gail said...

Gorgeous bi-color rose JJ! I love the Carolina Rose and my good friend and garden designer brought me one to plant in the garden...Maybe i will be lucky and find a beauty or two that are yellow! gail

J.J. said...

haha i photoshopped it! that good eh?
i have seen a single yellow before,
but sorry folks no zillion dollars in real life!

fairegarden said...

Aha, I suspected some dalliance with the colors, JJ! You really had us there. The rose hips are wonderful and make brilliant decorations in a bowl of sweet home harvested potpourri. I have never seen birds eat them even though we leave the many here for winter interest. Maybe too hard?

J.J. said...

There are a few wilder type roses
that make sweet and tangy sour
hips that are tender and choice,
but most roses do not, rosa canina
and rosa rugosa are the best two
species in my opinion for hips,
although the small hips of rosa multiflora
are also quite tasty, the flavor can be quite green and fresh,like a salad green,
while rose hips contain a higher concentration of vitamin c than citrus,
lending them a sour punch, great for jelly
or jam because you need to seed them well
and its easier to liquify and strain them.

James Missier said...

I have not seen a five petaled rose here, let alone getting those rose hips. It must be truly delicious!

Sun Drenched Islands in the Dark Cedars

You may have encountered a cedar glade before if you enjoy walking through the woods in the Nashville Tennessee area, you would have been walking along through the cedars and would have come to a clearing, upon passing through you may have noticed how hot and dry it was,if in summer,or how wet and spongy the limestone gravel was ,if in winter.You may have had many of my own first thoughts , wondering "is this an old lot? perhaps and old road of some sort long degraded" before you started to notice plants you hadn't ever seen in your life,even though you've lived your entire life in the Nashville area, and if you had been lucky enough to happen across one during spring bloom time you'd notice the rainbow of colors blooming on those never before encountered plants, what an exiting place these glades can be!
In truth that place you thought may have been an old lot is a natural limestone clearing, Sometimes tens of thousands of years old , old enough for the plants there to adapt to their unique micro climate.
It's feasible to think that these places have been visited by animals and humans alike, for thousands upon thousands of years, being a natural clearing where one could camp or simply gaze up at the sky,and the way it seems so much bigger in the glades somehow, you can see the whole milky way sparkling there on a clear summer night, these places truly are a gift of natural beauty and diversity and a testament to the strength of life and its ability to adapt.

Sadly most of this rare ecosystem has been lost forever ,and some endemic plants are either extinct or severely endangered, in the past they have been built on ,dumped in,and covered over with rubble, they are inundated by man made lakes and torn apart by people with atv's and four wheelers who do not realize what they are doing.
There may be less than 10% of what cedar glade
there was before the Nashville basin was settled, and that continues to shrink even today, So lets educate our friends in the world of horticulture about our cedar glades.

Here are some resources for Cedar Glade Research:

Cedar Glade Endemic Plants

Center for Cedar Glade Studies

Cedar Glade Wikipedia