Nature's Aphrodisiac: Rose Medicine
A wonderful nervine, great for uplifting the mood and alleviating depression, rose also has antispasmodic, aphrodisiac and sedative qualities, as well as being anti-inflammatory. Rose helps regulate menstruation as well as stimulate the digestion. Rosehips, which come along after the bloom has faded, are a wonderful source of vitamins C, B2 and E.
Rose has an otherworldly allure. She is associated with gods and saints and is depicted as a symbol of beauty, love, protection, and grace. Wherever she grows, her stories are intimately entwined in lore and culture and her presence is found in art, poetry, song, and in religious ceremony since ancient times through to the present day. The smell of rose is heavenly and will transport you to a refuge of grace and beauty. Many say it opens the heart and offers protection. Wild rose is used for spiritual cleansing and protection and is also used to bring healing to those who have died or those who have been left by a loved one, which makes it a wonderful herb for grief alongside hawthorn berries and motherwort.
Rose embodies lessons of duality and discernment. Hers is the medicine of softness and strength, of beauty that invites you in, coupled with thorns that set clear boundaries. She shows you how to be vulnerable and strong at the same time, and the importance of these lessons are so important in these times. As we move through our lives, we dance between vulnerability and protection and rose shows us how to do this with grace and beauty.
Wild rose grows in a variety of habitats including wooded, open, dry and moist locations from low to middle elevations. Many roses form dense thickets. Birds love to eat rose hips and help distribute the seeds.
Since ancient times, roses have been used and recommended for various ailments such as healing wounds, modulating inflammation, women's health, stomach complaints, headache, dizziness, grief and heartache, and colds & flu (to name just a few). This luxurious herb works on so many different parts of the body and imbalanced tissue states because of its many healing properties.
Where rose removes unwanted energy and helps to bring strength and protection to the spiritual body, it also does this physically. Rose is an excellent astringent along with most members of the rose family. What this means is that it tightens and tonifies inflamed tissue, both topically and internally. An astringent will tighten the puffiness and help remove excess fluid – allowing for better nutrient and waste transport. Rose is especially indicated for diarrhea, mouth sores and sore throats, sore eyes, irritated skin, burns, bleeding and other conditions where the tissue is boggy, disorganized and puffy.
Rose is aphrodisiac (moving the blood and opening us up to the sweet sensuality of this human embodiment) astringent (helping to tighten lax tissues), nervine (calming the nerves), slightly antimicrobial (as are all plants with a detectable scent, due to their volatile oil content), anti-inflammatory and cooling (making them great for sunburn, rashes, boils, stings, etc.), vulnerary (wound healing), and slightly analgesic (pain-killing), among other things. Rose is also a mild diuretic and the tea is drunk in large amounts to flush the urinary tract.
Long used as a women's medicine, rose has a lovely effect on the wombspace. Physically, it is a pelvic decongestant- a blood mover- used to break up stagnation and bring warmth and movement to the area. This action- the stimulation of circulation and blood flow to the pelvis-helps to address menstrual difficulties, cystic growths, and volatile emotions, and it is also what is responsible for rose's famed aphrodisiac properties.
Rosebuds and blossoms are one of the most revered cosmetic ingredients. They are balancing and moisturizing, specific for irritated and delicate skin.
Rosehips, the seed-bearing fruit of the plant, are one of herbalism's most beloved and oft-used remedies. They are full of antioxidant rich bioflavanoids and high in Vitamin C, and are delicious to boot. One study showed positive outcomes in blood pressure and cholesterol levels in people who had been consuming rosehip tea.
Rosehips also aid in staunching the loss of fluids from our hot, excited tissues—in all kinds of situations, but perhaps most importantly in the case of diarrhea, where cooling, drying, and binding the tissues is needed right away.
You can make many forms of rose medicine – tea, infused petals in honey, brandy, infused oil and you can cook with it. Such a versatile flower and medicine and one we cannot live without! We definitely recommend you bring rose into your life.
Rose Infused Honey
1- Gather aromatic petals and let wilt until they are half dry – usually about a day Place petals in a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid.
2- Warm honey gently on the stovetop so that it is very fluid but well below boiling.
3- Pour enough honey into the jar so that it completely covers the flowers. Cap tightly and place in a warm spot.
4- Stir and wipe moisture off the underside of the lid every few days. This will help remove excess water from your honey.
5- Strain with muslin cloth after 2-3 weeks.
The pressed petals can be made into tea and drank or place in a bath for a luxurious “rose honey bath”.
Store honey in a glass jar in a cool dark place. Some people like to keep it in the refrigerator but this is not necessary as long as your honey does not have too much water in it. tea, cooking recipes, cough syrup, and other creations.
Cranberry Rosehip Relish
1 12oz. bag of cranberries
1 cup fresh rosehips or 1/2 cup of dried rosehips (cleaned, seeds removed)
The juice of 1 orange
Honey, agave nectar or sugar added to desired sweetness
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1- In a medium-sized pan gently heat cranberries, rosehips, orange juice, and lemon juice until the cranberries and rosehips are soft and cooked.
2- Add honey or other sweetener to taste. You will be surprised at how much you need to add to counteract the bitterness and tartness of the cranberry.
3- Let the relish cool before serving it and keep refrigerated for up to several weeks.