Colonial, only half-shrubby; stems under 1 m, usually densely prickly; prickles slender, straight, unequal, the infrastipular and internodal ones essentially alike; stipules pubescent, usually entire, or glandular-dentate toward the tip; lfls (7)9 or 11, 1-4 cm, firm, obovate or obovate-oblong, sharply serrate, very often pubescent beneath; fls corymbose, terminating the nearly herbaceous stems of the season and often also on short lateral branches from older stems; hypanthium and pedicel usually glabrous or nearly so; sep persistent, often becoming erect and connivent; pet pink (white) to deep rose, 1.5-3 cm; hips purplish or red, 10-15 mm thick; 2n=28. Prairies and plains, or in open or brushy sites eastward; N.Y. to Alta., s. to D.C., Ind., Mo., Tex., and Colo. (R. conjuncta; R. pratincola; R. suffulta)
Gleason, Henry A. & Cronquist, Arthur J. 1991. Manual of vascular plants of northeastern United States and adjacent Canada. lxxv + 910 pp.
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From Flora of Indiana (1940) by Charles C. Deam
I have found this species only in Tipton County in Indian Prairie in moist soil along the railroad about a half mile west of Goldsmith. Chas. M. Ek has found it in several places along railroads in Howard County. This rare form [of Rosa arkansana = R. suffulata var.relicta)] has been found in Indiana only in Tipton County in the Indian Prairie area along the railroad a short distance west of Goldsmith. "It resembles a weak R. suffulta; it is semi-herbaceous, the two year old wood being often semi-procumbent. It differs from R. suffulta in the narrow stipules, small fruit with reflexed and semi-deciduous sepals, in which characteristics it resembles R. carolina L." "R. relicta begins to flower earlier than R. suffulta, just after R. blanda and continues to flower through the summer." Like the next species [Rosa rudiuscula], it may have originated by natural hybridization.