Tisbury DPW cuts back thriving Beach Road rosa rugosa


The Tisbury department of public works (DPW) recently drastically cut back brush and rosa rugosa along the bike and pedestrian path on Beach Road up to the Lagoon Pond launch ramp entrance. The scope of the project generated some concerns about the popular native pink-flowering shrubs from community members.

“It was thriving, and we had to trim it back,” DPW director Fred LaPiana explained last week. “We did not uproot anything.” He said that the hardy rosa rugosa, commonly referred to as beach rose, would continue to thrive.

Although a new machine used by the DPW trimmed the shrubbery more closely to the ground than anticipated, Mr. LaPiana said, “It will grow back up this spring and not be as obtrusive.”

The overgrowth affected visibility for motorists exiting the boat launch ramp area onto Beach Road and presented a safety issue for those who use the bike/pedestrian path, Mr. LaPiana said.

“The rosa rugosas have sharp thorns on them, and although they are an appropriate plant for that environment without a doubt, if they get obtrusive, they start to hurt people, especially in a tourist-type situation, where you have pedestrians and bicyclists traveling along that path,” Mr. LaPiana said.