The rose leaves are actually a very important part of the rose plant.
While the flowers get all the glory, the color, texture, size and sheen of the leaves is vital to not only the overall look of the rosebush, but also in some instances, a contributing factor to the disease resistance of the rose.
On the specific roses that you will find on this site, I like to give information about the leaves (foliage) of each rose plant.
Information about the leaves might also help someone to identify a certain rose, simply by knowing the leaf information. (So many roses look very, very much alike!)
When you think about it, for a good part of the year, the foliage might be all that you see on your rose plant.
The color of the leaves can really bring out the colors in the rose, and make them stand out even more.
The leaves on a rose plant can vary in color from various shades of light to dark green, and every shade in-between. They can even be a grey green color.
Some varieties will have burgundy or dark red on the new growth that turns green with age.
Some leaves turn red in the fall with the rest of the foliage. (This can add some unexpected color to the garden)
The size of the leaves vary from really small to quite large. The number of leaflets varies also. For example; Old Garden roses can have 7-9 or more leaflets, while Modern roses have 3 and 5. (Picture below has 5)
The texture of a rose leaf will range from smooth to wrinkled. (Botonists call wrinkled leaves 'Rugose') as those found on the Rugosa type roses.
The sheen (Which could be important) can vary from matte to glossy. (Glossy leaves have a waxy coating that helps protect the bush from certain fungal infections)
It doesn't mean that roses with matte leaves aren't disease resistant; the Rugosa roses have crinkled and matte leaves, yet they are very disease resistant.
Take a look at the leaves of your rose bush. If they are yellow, orange, black, or have spots or holes, you need to find the cause and fix the problem! Take a look to learn more about rose diseases and pests.
Leaves will often tell you when the plant needs a drink, or if the plant is lacking in something.
So although the rose flowers are the reason we grow the roses, just don't forget to pay attention to the leaves,your rose flowers will thank you!