Some gardeners say the best hips are produced by species roses. Here are some Hips Tips that I have discovered over the years.
- Rugarosa for big juicy spherical hips
- Birds adore the red, egg-shaped hips of the wild dog rose Rosa canina which are also good for cooking.
- Masses of orange-red hips adorn the rampant rambler Rosa filipes ‘Kiftsgate’. It needs a large tree or building to grow over as does Rambling Rector.
- Rosa ‘Madame Grégoire Staechelin’ is a glorious climber with huge hips that turn from yellow to pinkish-red.
- The Scotch rose, Rosa spinosissima is a very prickly species rose with purplish-black hips
- Bristly, urn-shaped, dark red hips hang on the arching stems of Rosa setipoda, make a striking autumn feature.
- Hips vary in shape and colour with Rosa moyesii Evesbatch having long elongated hips and Rosa pimpinellifolia round black hips.
- Rosa villosa has gooseberry like hips whilst for small, orange-red hips try Rosa ‘Fru Dagmnar Hastrup’ that look like cherry tomatoes.
- The fatter and juicier the hip the better they make rose hip syrup.
- As a child we used to break open the hip and push seed down the back of friends shirts to cause itching. I haven’t tried that for 60 years or so! but I still get the itch.
A few older shrub roses that are recommended by the RHS:
- R. ‘Nymphenburg’ has large, orange-red hips following salmon-pink flowers.
- R. spinosissima ‘Ormiston Roy’ has deepest maroon hips following yellow flowers.
- R. ‘Penelope’ is a long-flowering Hybrid Musk with richly scented creamy-pink flowers and uniquely coral pink hips.
- R. ‘Scharlachglut’ has huge numbers of pear-shaped red hips following scarlet flowers.