The Green Rose
Rosa chinensis viridiflora

The Green rose, Rosa chinensis viridiflora, is an old heirloom China rose. Its green colored roses are the result of a chance mutation. The petals of this green rose flower are actually sepals.

green rose flowers
green rose flower buds


'Rosa Monstrosa'


Grows well on poor soils.


If you cut any rose flower in your garden and flip it upside down, those pointy green "leaves" just below the bloom are the sepals. Every rose has them.

This Green China rose has made its flowers completely out of them. How novel.

The reason for this?

It's a mystery as is the origin of the unique rose.

Rosa chinensis viridiflora was introduced by Bembridge and Harrison in 1856 though it is thought to have been in cultivation since some time in the mid 1700s.

The Green Rose

The fully developed blooms are tinged pink.

green rose bush

It may be a sport of the antique China rose, Slater's Crimson China but this is not certain. They are both free-branching, twiggy shrubs that grow to about 3 feet in height. Some British rosarians believe it to be a mutation of the heirloom rose 'Old Blush'.

The mature foliage is the same bright green as the sepals on the lower portion of the flower. New leaves are tinged red. The foliage is resistant to all the major rose diseases.

The flowers are not just unusual in color (the same green as the leaves at the bottom, lightening to chartreuse at the top) but they have a surprising fragrance as well. They smell of black pepper. But this only becomes apparent if you bruise the sepals.

Rosa viridiflora

This is a particularly good rose for southern gardens being recommended for USDA zones 6-10. You may be able to grow it in zone 5 with winter protection but it will die to the ground each winter and return in the spring.

The flowers will add interest to cut flower arrangements. The Green rose plant's continuous bloom and nicely rounded shape will make it a talking point in the rose garden.

Green Flowers for Sale:

Euphorbia 'Ascot Rainbow'

Hydrangea 'Limelight'

Coneflower 'Green Jewel'

Other Beautiful Roses:

'Iceberg Rose' Bush Rosa Korbin. White, burgundy and pink Iceberg roses. White Iceberg climbing rose. Planting, pruning and care of Iceberg Floribunda roses.

'Memorial Day' Rose and 'WWII Memorial' rose rose bush. Memorial rose bushes are types of hybrid tea roses. Both are fragrant, pink hybrid tea roses.

'Nicole' Rose description and growing information. 'Nicole' roses are a beautiful blend of dark red/pink, orchid pink, and white. The double, cupped blooms occur in clusters.

The 'Playboy' Rose Bush, syn. 'Cheerio', is a compact growing orange rose. The 'Playboy' Floribunda rose will add mild fragrance and sizzling color to your summer rose garden.

Go from The Green Rose to Plant Guides' Home Page

Disease Resistant Roses

Red Double Knock Out® Rose Shrub
Champlain Rose Shrub
Easy Elegance® Screaming Neon Rose
Hansa Hybrid Rugosa Rose
Enter Your E-mail Address
Enter Your First Name (optional)

Don't worry — your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Botanical Journeys Gardening Newsletter.