Are Cotton Rose And Confederate Rose The Same?

Cotton rose

Q: Are cotton rose and Confederate rose two different plants? In my mind, the Confederate rose is a thorny vine while a cotton rose is an upright plant.

A: Cotton rose and Confederate rose are the same plant, Hibiscus mutabilis. The flowers are white when they open but fade to pink and then red as they age. I think your thorny vine would be Cherokee rose, Rosa laevigata, the state flower of Georgia. Legend has it that this rose sprang up along the Trail of Tears when our first native Georgians were cruelly driven from their homes to the area now known as Oklahoma.

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