USDA Certified Organically Grown Medicinal Herbs, Certified by Global Culture
Roses have been utilized by the human race for thousands of years as an important medicinal, for their famous fragrance, and for their edible petals and rosehips. Today, there are more than 35,000 varieties of roses in the world encompassing every size, growth habit and color variation!!! The earliest roses were documented from fossilized evidence almost 30 million years ago although, actual cultivation of this flowering plant probably began in Asia some 5,000 years ago.
Roses are included in the myths of the ancient Hindus, Greeks and Romans and the beads found on the biblical rosary were crafted from the resin of dried, crushed rosebuds. Wreaths of Roses have been found in Ancient Egyptian tombs and during the Roman Empire, Roman peasants were forced to grow roses instead of food to satiate the demand for rosewater and rose petals from the Roman elite. Apparently, the decadent Romans had become accustomed to laying on beds of rose petals during their feasting and orgies!! ! Napoleon and his wife had an extensive rose garden comprising of 250 varieties and set an example for other estates to design similar collections. During this period rose petals and rosewater were in such demand that they were often used as an alternate form of currency.
Until 1800, all roses were either white, pink or some variation, but beginning in the 1790's cultivated roses began to enter Europe from China. These cultivars bloomed repeatedly and included the deep red rose so symbolic of the species. European growers happily adopted these new, repeat bloomers from China and began propagating numerous colors and sizes of roses for the expanding European rose market. By the 1900's, the yellow rose was introduced and today there is an endless color display among the modern patented Roses.
My personal preference for medicinal use and drying petals, are the older roses that are not hybridized and patented. They generally have better hardiness and are more fragrant, such as the original Gallica Apothecary Rose or the wild native rose species. Their medicinal qualities are stronger than those roses bred primarily for large showy blooms. We offer two Rose species to choose from at our nursery. The Rosa Rugosa is a wild rose cultivar selected for it's extremely large rose hips and the Nootka Rose which is a sweet smelling wild rose native to the Northwest with excellent medicinal qualities.
Traditionally used as perfumery, medicine and food for thousands of years there is documentation of Monks growing roses for medicinal use in Europe in the 13 century and during that period the use of roses medicinally became almost synonymous with the herbal Apothecaries in Europe which always had a large apothecary rose growing just outside the door.The Ancient Romans used rose petals steeped in wine as their favorite hangover cure. The tea, tincture or vinegar tincture of the leaves, flowers and Rose Hips have been used in Ayurvedic, European, Chinese and North American herbal traditions. A slightly cooling, astringent, which can aid in wound healing, inflammation, pain relief, arthritis, problems with the digestive system and itching and swelling from insect bites. The rose hips collected when ripe in the fall are extremely high in Vitamin C and bioflavanoids and can be made into a jam, juice, vinegar or powdered. The Attar of Rose or distilled essential oil is stimulating, uplifting and creates a sense of well being. Rose scented body care products are always a treat for the skin and hair.
Roses are relatively easy to grow. They like full sun for best blooms, a rich, well drained soil with a mulch of manure if possible. Summer irrigation and a little fertilizing after the spring bloom will encourage a second bloom in fall. Rose hips turn a lovely red in the late fall and are ready to pick after the first hard freeze. The blooms open gradually over the spring months sweetening the air with their scent, which is much loved by all kinds of Bees, pollinators of other beneficial insects. I have many different roses planted throughout my yard. Some are on the hedge, some in the garden, including a large red rose whose petals I collect each year. Some are intermingled with the flowering Quince and Camellia, and my newest one is planted right below our deck on top of the grave of my incredibly loyal and well loved dog Boris, who died this past January after 14 years. I look forward to seeing that rose grow and flourish for him. People go to great lengths and expense to buy a bouquet of roses for a loved one, but that gift will last such a short time, while planting a rose bush will bring many seasons of roses to pick, smell, enjoy and just gaze at!! We offer Hedge Rose (Rosa rugosa) and the Nootka Rose.
To order Nootka Rose click here.
To order Hedge Rose click here.
Medicinal Herb Plants