Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Cistus monspeliensis L.

Frost hardy, bushy shrub with lance-shaped, deeply veined leaves and crowded, terminal and axillary cymes of 3-6 saucer-shaped white flowers, to 2.5cm across, in summer.  To 1m.  [RHSE, Hortus, Hilliers’].

Horticultural & Botanical History

‘The present species is not a common inhabitant of our collections, and another species, a native of Crete, is often confused with and sold for it at the Nurseries, although no two plants of a section can well be more dissimilar; we have also seen them confused in the Herbariums; and in a collection of Cretan specimens lately received by Mr. Lambert were fine specimens of it, marked C. monspeliensis, though it is much nearer related to C. hirsutus.  As the present plant is so scarce in collections, we are inclined to believe that it is more tender than some other species, particularly as it is a handsome growing plant, and an abundant bloomer; it should therefore be planted in a warm border, or where it can receive some protection in severe weather.  Plants of it may be grown in pots, and can then be protected in frames in Winter; it succeeds well in any rich light soil, or a mixture of sandy loam and peat will suit it very well.  Cuttings planted under hand-glasses in Autumn will strike root readily, but the glasses must not be kept too close on them for any length of time, or they will be very liable to damp and turn mouldy.  Our drawing was taken from a plant at the Nursery of Mr. Colvill, in August last.’  [Sweet – Cistinae t.27/1825-30].

Introduced to England in 1656.  [PD].

History at Camden Park

Listed only in the 1857 catalogue [T.316/1857].


Published Mar 08, 2009 - 04:17 PM | Last updated Mar 03, 2010 - 03:17 PM

Figured are lance-shaped leaves and terminal and axillary cymes of salverform white flowers.  Cistinae t.27, 1825-30.

Cistus monspeliensis L. | Sweet – Cistinae t.27/1825-30 | BHL

Family Cistaceae
Region of origin

Southern Europe and North Africa

Common Name

Montpellier rock rose

Name in the Camden Park Record

Cistus Montpellensis

Confidence level high