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Wild Weeds – Cherokee Rose

Wild Weeds – Weed of the Month

Cherokee Rose

Rosa laevigata

The Cherokee Rose is native to China, Taiwan, Laos, and Vietnam. It is a beautiful evergreen shrub that prefers to climb. Often you will find Cherokee Roses climbing around trees, over other small shrubs, on fence lines, and sometimes on structures. This rose boasts a medium size white flower (2.5-4 inches) with yellow stamens (center) that are quite fragrant with a pleasant rose smell. The stem leading to the flower is often quite bristly. Pollinated flowers will develop into bright red rose hips. 

This flower was introduced to the United States somewhere around 1780 where it soon became naturalized. The Cherokee Rose is considered invasive in most southeastern states as it has the ability to choke out other plants around it and can be quite an aggressive grower. However, it is the state flower of Georgia.

The Cherokee Rose has only been vouchered in a little over 30% of Florida’s counties, but it is likely present in most of North & Central Florida.

Control Methods

Looking to control Cherokee Rose on your property? Although beautiful, this plant can quickly take over other desirable species. Texas Invasives recommends a 20% triclopyr ester product in oil applied to cut surfaces for sufficient control.

Wild Weeds is a monthly spotlight written by Alicia Halbritter, Baker County Agriculture & Natural Resources Agent. Wild Weeds highlights plants you may find in Florida on the roadside, while hiking, in the forest, or possibly even in your yard. Searching for more information on a particular plant? Email Alicia at aliciah1221@ufl.edu for more information/questions.

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