When people think about fall color, roses aren’t usually the first plants that come to mind. But this year, some of my roses are putting on a color show that rivals any maple tree. One of the most colorful is the rugosa rose, Frau Dagmar Hartopp. I love this rose because it offers something in almost every season. In the spring it blooms early, producing wonderfully fragrant, single pink flowers. When hot summer weather hits, the plant’s glossy green foliage rarely suffers from Black Spot or any other rose ailment. As fall arrives, the leaves turn a brilliant shade of yellow and by the time they drop off the plant, it has already developed bright orange-red hips (seed pods) that decorate the branches
all winter long. Plus, Frau is a nice compact rose that only grows about 4 feet tall. Other rugosa roses can grow to six or eight feet tall and require pruning to keep them from taking over the garden. And, did I mention it’s winter hardy, too!
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