The rose hips or fruits of different species of the rose plant have always had a significant place in natural medicine, as they are very rich in vitamin C content. The color of these rose hips varies from dark red to bright scarlet and their shapes differ too. While some of the rose hips may be ovoid in appearance, there are others that are pear-shaped. Basically, the rose hips are collected from the variety of rose plant called the dog rose or Rosa canina. However, herbalists prefer the larger rose hips of the Japanese rose called R. rugosa. Even other varieties of the rose plant, including R. acicularis as well as R. cinnamomea, are also valued greatly. Incidentally, all these different varieties of rose plants belong to the Rosaceae family.
Over the centuries, gardeners across the globe have admired and loved the rose flowers that are undoubtedly elegant as well as aromatic. At the same time, the gardeners have also held the hips or the fruits of the rose plant in high esteem for its numerous medicinal benefits. The rose hips vary from oval to round to pear-shape in appearance and they appear either in the latter part of summer or during the fall. Interestingly, in reality, the rose hips are not fruits, but receptacles or containers that enclose the actual fruits of the rose plant. The actual rose fruit is known as ‘seeds’ or ‘achenes’...Several researched have shown that the rose also possesses properties that increases the body’s immunity and helps to restrict all kinds of infections from becoming larger problems. This is possible owing to the rose’s cleansing or purification properties..."
- Rose hips - R. canina:
- The rose hips (R.canina) or the fruits of the plant are used as tincture as well as syrup to treat different ailments. TINCTURE: The tincture prepared from rose hips (R. canina) are ingested as an astringent (a medicine the draws affected tissues closer) to treat diarrhea, alleviate colic or stomach pains and is also blended with cough medicines. SYRUP: The syrup prepared from the rose hips (R. canina) is used to provide flavor to other medicines, mostly the bitter and bland ones. The syrup is also blended in cough mixtures or may be ingested as a rich source of vitamin C.
- Rose hips - R. laevigata:
- Medications prepared with rose hips (R. laevigata) are normally ingested to treat stomach disorders. They may be applied as decoction. DECOCTION: A decoction prepared with rose hips (R. laevigata) may be blended with other herbs like dang shen, bai zhu and shan yao and ingested to treat insistent diarrhea that is accompanied with stomach flaw.
- Essential oil - R. centifolia / R. damascena:
- The essential oil (R. centifolia / R. damascene) extracted from the rose hips or the fruits of the rose plant are basically beneficial to treat skin and stomach conditions. This oil is normally used externally and applied as a cream, lotion, oil and massage oil. CREAM: A few drops of the oil extracted from rose hips may be added to creams to heal parched or irritating skin. LOTION: One ml of the tincture prepared with another herb lady’s mantle may be blended with 10 ml of rosewater to treat itching in the vagina. Use the same blend to prepare a cream by following a standard base. Blend the rosewater with equivalent proportion of purified witch hazel and use it as a comforting and moisturizing lotion to treat skin that is inclined to be affected by pimples or acne. OIL: Bathe with water containing two drops of the oil extracted from the rose hips to get relief from depression or melancholy, grief and/ or insomnia. MASSAGE OIL: To avail relief from anxiety and fatigue add approximately two ml of rose oil to 20 ml of almond or wheat germ oil and massage the same on the forehead and other parts of the body. The same blend may be used to alleviate lethargic digestion.
- Flowers - R. rugosa:
- The rose flowers (R. rugosa) are helpful for treating menstrual and liver disorders and may be ingested as a decoction. DECOCTION: A decoction prepared with rose flowers (R. rugosa) may be blended with another herb motherwort and ingested for treating heavy menstruation. On the other hand, when the decoction is blended with herbs like bai shao yao and xiang fu, it provides an effective medication for liver dysfunction.
- Petals - R. gallica:
- The petals of the rose flower (R. gallica) are beneficial in treating menstruation and stomach disorders. A tincture prepared with them may be used as a gargle for throat infections. TINCTURE: Ingesting approximately three ml of a tincture prepared with rose petals thrice daily is helpful in treating diarrhea as well as sluggish absorption of food. When the same tincture is blended with other herbs like the lady’s mantle, white deadnettle or shepherd’s purse, the medication is effectual for treating erratic or intense menstruation. GARGLE: When the tincture prepared with rose petals is diluted with warm water, it may be used as a gargle to heal aching throats. The tincture may also be blended with another herb sage for similar application.