Botanical and Ecological Features of Rosa laxa Retz ssp harputense T. Baytop (Kismiri Rose)

Alp Ş., Koyuncu M.

1st International Symposium on Woody Ornamentals of the Temperate Zone, Pruhonice, Czech Republic, 26 - 30 May 2008, vol.885, pp.39-45 identifier

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Full Text
  • Volume: 885
  • City: Pruhonice
  • Country: Czech Republic
  • Page Numbers: pp.39-45
  • Van Yüzüncü Yıl University Affiliated: Yes


The tradition of gardening and growing ornamental plants goes back till Urartians, who lived 3000 years ago, in the Van region. Therefore, one often comes across different ornamental plants in old and traditional gardens in Van. Some of these are old garden roses, which have different origins and about which there is only little information. In this study, some information will be given about the botanical features and growing environment of the recently identified taxon, Rosa laxa Retz var. harputense T. Baytop. It grows in the gardens of the region but has not sufficiently been introduced to the scientific world. When it was first encountered in 1995, the identification key, concerning the identification of roses in P. H. Davis' "Flora of Turkey" (Volume IV, 1972), which is the primary source to identify the roses grown in Anatolia, was not adequate. This rose was both first identified in 1999 and published by T. Baytop in his book called "Old Ottoman Garden Roses (2001)". It has been understood, with the later studies, that this rose is a new variety that has not been identified so far. This kind of rose, known publicly as "kismiri rose," is one which has remontancy and pompon shaped, double flowers. Its flowers are fragrant, borne on stems in groups of 2-6 or singly, 2-2.5 cm in diameter, and petals that are white with lemon coloured bases. This rose, growing in the old gardens of Van and Elazig and in the monasteries in the region, is a variety of Rosa laxa Retz, which naturally grows in East Asia, North-west China and Siberia. Its origin is not exactly known or when and how this rose came to this region from such a long way.