Skip to main content
You are here
Facebook icon
Pinterest icon
Twitter icon

Rosa chinensis (China rose)

Flowers of the China rose can vary greatly in colour and may open red, creamy white, or unusually a beautiful pale pink that later becomes red. This hardy rose is renowned for darkening over time, whereas other species lighten after opening.
Rosa chinensis var. spontanea white form at Kew Gardens

Rosa chinensis var. spontanea white form at Kew Gardens (Photo: Martyn Rix)

Species information

Scientific name: 

Rosa chinensis Jacq.

Common name: 

China rose, Chinese tea rose, yue ji hua (China)

Conservation status: 

Not evaluated according to IUCN Red List criteria.

Habitat: 

Rocky slopes and hills.

Key Uses: 

Ornamental, medicine.

Known hazards: 

None known.

Taxonomy

Subclass: 
Superorder: 
Rosanae
Order: 
Rosales
Family: 
Rosaceae
Genus: Rosa

About this species

The Chinese have a long history of growing roses for both ornamental and medicinal purposes. Repeat-flowering roses were amongst cultivated plants introduced to Europe from China in the late 18th century.

Rosa chinensis, described and illustrated by Nikolaus Joseph von Jacquin (1727-1817) in 1768, is the ancestor of many of the popular cultivated roses found in gardens around the world today.

Synonym: 

Rosa chinensis Jacq. f. spontanea Rehder & E.H.Wilson, Rosa nankinensis Lour., Rosa sinica L.

Genus: 
Rosa

main info

Courses at Kew

Students learn about plant taxonomy and identification

Kew offers a variety of specialist training courses in horticulture, conservation and plant science.

Why People Need Plants

image of book cover

A compelling book from Kew Publishing that explores the crucial role that plants play in the everyday lives of all of us.