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Dog Rose

The commonest of several wild roses, to be found in hedges, woods and scrub land around most of Scotland.

A member of the rose family like the bramble, it has arching stems covered in sharp prickles, which help it to scramble up other bushy or tree-like species.

The leaves are pinnate, usually 5 to 7 leaflets on a stem, with 2 to 3 paired leaflets and a single end leaflet. 

The flowers have 5, often notched petals, are and 3-5 cms in diameter. Flower colours range from white, or pale pink to deep pink, often with white at the centre. The stamens and ovary are yellow during flowering.

The ovary ripens after flowering to become a rosehip, a bright red, shiny oval fruit. Rosehips are noted for their high levels of vitamin C and antioxidants, and have been used to make tea, syrup and marmalade.

The name Dog rose originated in classical Greece, where it was once believed the plant could soothe the bite of a rabid dog.

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