VIU Milner Gardens and Woodland

Plant Pick: Kiftsgate Rose or Rosa Amaglia

Kiftsgate rose or  Rosa Amaglia

by Vancouver Island Master Gardeners Association

Latin name: Rosa filipes 'Kiftsgate' or 'Amaglia'

Note: Rosa ‘Amaglia’ is similar to R. ‘Kiftsgate’ with single creamy white slightly fragrant flowers but much slower growing

Photos: Rosa filipes "Amaglia"

Photo courtesy of:  Kay Howard




Shrub (vigorous climbing, deciduous shrub)


Form:                                     pinnate, 8–14cm long, with 5-7 leaflets

Arrangement:                      alternate

Texture, Venation              Heavily veined, leathery, pinnate venation

Compound leaf:                  Odd, pinnate


Robust, vigorous, rampant, fragrant, rambler best suited to climbing into trees, covering buildings or a very large pergola or walls. Large thorns

Height:                                  8 to 12+ meters

Width:                                   4 to 8 meters

Hardiness Zone:

Zone 5A (-20 to -15 C)


Full sun, partial shade

Flower colour:

It bears massive heads of small, creamy  cup shaped white flowers  2 to 2.5 cm. in diameter with a strong, musky fragrance. They are held in beautiful, flat-topped, cascading clusters – known as corymbs – with each flower facing outwards and up to 100 flowers in the corymb.Masses of small, oval shaped, coral-red hips follow the flowers. These are 8 to 15 mm in diameter.

Leaf colour:

  Light green

Flower time:

June to August

Preferred soil

and Watering:

Sand, clay, chalk, loam but prefers fertile humus-rich soil

pH: Acid, Alkaline, Neutral


Pruning Requirements:

Prune in the autumn after the flowers start to fade. First remove dead, diseased or dying branches.

Tie in any new shoots and remove any really old branches if the plant is heavily congested - this will stimulate new growth.

Prune side branches growing from the main framework, cutting them back to leave two to three leaf buds.

Landscape Uses:       

It is occasionally grown as an ornamental plant in gardens, valued for its fragrance and unusually large clusters of flowers compared to other roses, sometimes also for its size, and its ability to climb into trees. For those that have the room for it to reach its full potential, this is a superb variety.

Pest Susceptibility:  May be subject to black spot, rose rust, powdery mildews and downy mildew