Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Cherokee Rose - Rosa laevigata   Michaux
Members of Rosaceae:
Members of Rosa with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 6 » Order Rosales » Family Rosaceae
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DistributionLower Piedmont and Sandhills. First collected in NC in Orange County by C.L. Kuhn in 1977 near Lake Clearwater. Collected in New Hanover County on 20 March 2022 by Mark and Myra Basinger.

Native of Asia; in N.A. NC to FL and TX. The name of Cherokee in the most often-used common name might suggest that this is a species native to the U.S. According to Weakley (2018), the discoverer -- Andre Michaux -- thought that it was a native species, when he first found it in the 1790s; this suggests a very early introduction onto the continent of this rose species.
AbundanceVery rare.
HabitatDisturbed Longleaf Pine woodland, roadside thicket, near lake.
PhenologyFlowering March-May; fruiting September-November.
IdentificationCherokee Rose clambers or climbs over other vegetation and may reach 30 feet long. Stems are glabrous (at least distally) and have stout thorns. Flowers are white, 2-3 inches in diameter, and very showy. Macartney Rose (R. bracteata) is similar, but its stems are hairy and glandular.
Taxonomic Comments
Other Common Name(s)
State RankSE
Global RankGNR
State Status
US Status
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B.A. SorrieSame data. MoorePhoto_non_natural
B.A. SorrieRoadside, climbing up Pinus taeda, south of Carthage, April 2019. MoorePhoto_non_natural
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