Nootka rose

Rosa nutkana var. nutkana

Range:  Common throughout BC south of 55 N except in the Chilcotin area, infrequent northward, absent in NE BC; N to AK and S to CA, CO and UT.  This variety is found mostly from east of Coast-Cascade Mountains.

Description: Medium to tall shrub 0.5-3 m tall, spreading by rhizomes and often thicket-forming; stems stout to spindly, erect to arching, with a pair of large prickles (thorns) at each node, usually lacking internodal prickles.  Leaves alternate, deciduous, odd-pinnately compoundLeaflets 5 or 7 (9), elliptic to egg-shaped, 1-7 cm long, coarsely single- or double-toothedInflorescence of usually single, sometimes 2 or 3, stalked flowers on lateral branchlets; corollas pink, saucer-shaped, large (4-8 cm across), the petals 5, (2) 2.5-4 cm long.

Ecology:  Mesic to moist thickets, forest edges, river terraces, shorelines, streambanks, clearings and roadsides in the lowland and montane zones.

Notes:  The chewed leaves have been used to treat bee stings.  Small branches or strips of bark can be boiled to make a tea to be used as an eyewash for cateracts.


  • Eflora
  • Pojar, J. and A. MacKinnon.   Plants of coastal British Columbia: including Washington, Oregon & Alaska. Lone Pine Publishing. Vancouver. 528 p.

Learn about the importance and diversity of our wetlands

Wetlandkeepers is a 2½ day introduction to wetland identification and stewardship. The course offers individuals an opportunity for hands-on practice of wetland conservation skills, such as conducting wetland, plant and bird surveys, wetland mapping and raising public awareness. It is a fun, and often muddy weekend, for all ages. Participants that successfully complete the course are awarded a Wetlandkeepers Certificate.