This pretty mystery is an heirloom passalong plant from East Texas
where it is known as the
CHRISTMAS ROSE or EASTER ROSE
(with no inferance to a Hellebore relationship)
Many characteristics are suggestive of a Ribes member, although I have yet to
source any in the currant (Grossulariaceae) family with such multi-petaled, 3" double blooms.
The deep veined, finely toothed leaves are mostly evergreen
in this Zone 7B garden.
The white petals give way to a button center,
revealing what appears to be a non-fertilized berry.
The above images portray a stem, bud and the after-flower development. None
of the blooms develop berry, seed or rose-like hips. They appear to attempt a green bumpy berry, but it withers away to a black gritty surface.
The stems have far-spaced tiny thorns with irregular vertical ridges, unlike the
uniform angles of a mint stem.
These characteristics certainly do seem to distinguish it from the Rosa family.
We invite you to share any knowledge of this mystery plant on our Forum under the Heirloom topic.
A rooted cutting flowered heavily each spring in a pot for 2 years.
It blooms once annually at the same time as Lady Banksia rose bushes.
After two years in a bed, it has maintained a 4 foot wide
multi-stemed clump of lax stems and has not suckered.