Roses, though typically propagated from cuttings, can also grow from seeds. Germination, however, is low, at approximately 30 percent. Hybrid rose seeds do not grow true to the parent plants, so your results will vary. Growing roses from seeds has the potential to be a rewarding experiment. The creation of new varieties has happened from growing seeds. Not every rose bush grown from seed will be a stand out, but you will enjoy the plant for years to come.
Collect the rose hips from a rose plant in autumn. The hips contain the seeds. Cut open the hips carefully using a knife. Collect the seeds.
Stratify the seeds by placing them in moist seed-starting soil mix in a plastic bag. Label the bag with the date and the type of rose from which you collected the seed. Put the bag in the refrigerator. Leave it in the refrigerator for 8 to 12 weeks. It is best to do this in late fall or winter.
Remove the bag from the refrigerator approximately 6 to 8 weeks before the last frost date for your area.
Fill a 2-inch pot with seed-starting mix. Set the pot in a tray of water until the soil becomes moist and then remove the pot. Place a rose seed 1/4 inch into the starting mix.
Place the pot in a warm room or on a heat mat. The ideal temperature should be around 70 degrees F. The rose seed needs warmth after the cold period for germination to occur. Keep the soil moist. Over the next 2 weeks, sprouts should start to appear.
Place a fluorescent light or grow light approximately 12 inches above the pots after the seeds sprout. The light will increase the health and growth of the rose seedlings.
Transplant the seedlings into a 4-inch pot after the true leaves have formed. Be gentle and do not touch the plant. Using a spoon, gently dig the plant out of the old pot. Place it into the new pot filled with slightly wet growing mix.
Keep the growing plant under the light. Provide a balanced fertilizer applied at half strength every 2 to 4 weeks. An open window or small fan provides airflow that will help prevent disease and make the rose stronger.
Harden off the plant by acclimating it to the outdoors during the spring. Place the potted plant in a location with dappled shade during the day for about 2 weeks.
Plant the rose in a location with full sun and well-drained soil. Continue to fertilize and water regularly for the best plant growth and blooms.