Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Closer Look at a Rock Rose

Even though rock roses are beautiful, I confess I don't grow any because their requirements overlap so much with some of my very favorite plants (roses, fruit trees, salvias to name a few). But it is hard to be unaffected by their simple blooms in the middle of winter. I took all these pictures at our recent trip to a beach in Aptos.

A rock rose (cistus) is a low shrub grown in hot and dry climates. It tolerates poor soils and needs little water. I see it often in coastal landscapes so it must be salt-tolerant too. They are also used for erosion control and in fire-hazard areas. It is amazing to see such mundane usefulness combined with such ethereal gentle beauty.

Some rock roses have red spots at each petal base, such as this orchid rockrose.

Most rock rose blooms have petals crinkled in the bud and sometimes in the open bloom too.

They have beautiful dense foliage sometimes having a grey tinge.

 It is so heart-warming to see a plant so beautiful growing cheerfully in such harsh conditions.


  1. I love those plants ! Here I grow most of them in pots because my climate is not appropriate : http://a-little-bit-of-paradise.over-blog.com/article-mon-ptit-bout-de-garigue-43898475.html

  2. Isabelle, yours are very beautiful. I love the white one with the spots at the base. Thank you for sharing.


I am so glad you have stopped by!