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Take time to smell the roses

June 29, 2013
By GARRY BRANDENBURG , Times-Republican

The WILD ROSE is a neat flower. Even though there are several species of this 'rose', the wild prairie rose, Rosa pratincola, is usually cited as the official flower. While Iowa has called it the state flower, so too have North Dakota, Georgia and New York. I guess they all know a good thing when they see it. Within Iowa, this flower has hybridized with other close botanical relatives which is why botanists have a hard time in critical identification tasks. This flower is found throughout the state under a wide range of conditions. It can grow into a shrubby collection of stems, leaves and flowers up to 4 feet tall. Or it can hug the ground in grassy environments such as the native prairie of the Marietta Sand Prairie Preserve. Its spreading perennial root system often sends up new shoots, thus helping to spread this plant across the land.



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