I know we are all feeling the strain of 2020. It seems people are fighting each other on every front, and society is bursting and pushing toward new growth. It is painful to watch—raw, unfiltered, and really illustrating the harm humans can do to one another when they lack empathy, caring, and perspective.
I used to find it easier in stressful times to shut down, harden my heart, and ignore others’ pain. This is a maladaptive strategy that empathic people often employ to protect ourselves, separate “us” from “them,” and build a wall. It is the illusion that another’s emotional, physical, and spiritual health don’t impact our own lives, so why should we care?
Rose is an herb I use to help open my heart while still protecting my tenderness. It is sweet, aromatic, and helps us feel at ease. Its thorns, on the other hand, work as an energetic protection and a reminder that you can be soft and sweet while maintaining your boundaries—and woe be to those who violate your well-established boundaries.
Wild rose is what I like to use for medicine making. Its aromatic petals sing the songs of late spring and early summer in the mountains. It likes to grow in disturbed edge areas where soil tends to be harsh and compacted. Rose grows alongside brambles of berries, under pines and aspens, and where people and pollinators can find it easily. The same qualities that make rose petals aromatic also make them medicinal, so the more aromatic the better. Wild roses only have five petals, unlike hybrid varieties found in nurseries. Hybrid roses have beautiful flowers, but they’re bred for their looks and may not retain as much of that beautiful aroma.
I use rose petal medicine almost exclusively for emotional support— opening the heart while protecting the person. The hips, on the other hand, go into teas, jams, jellies, tarts, and the like. These tart-but-sweet rose berries have a delicious flavor and are high in Vitamin C and pectin, making them wonderful to have on hand for the winter months when fresh fruits and veggies are less available.
In many ways, rose is my number-one herb, which is why I wanted to revisit it in this republished issue. It offers so much variety and gentle support to us, how could we do without it right now?
This issue was published before or after your membership. If you're interested in purchasing the issue separately, you may do so below.
Rose Flower Essence
Roses Four Ways
Rose Arts & Crafts
Rose Facial Cream
Rose Petal Medicine