Rosehips. I hand harvest these little red rubies every year in my backyard from the Rosa Californica (California Rose) bush in the Rosaceae botanical family.
These native rose bushes grow wild here in the Cascade foothills. In the wintertime, long after the sweet petals of Rosa Californica have fallen, the plant begins going dormant for the season. In its preparation for the cold, it produces a reddish orange-colored, nutrient-rich fruit, or hip, to cocoon its seeds. Rich in vitamins, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids, these little red fruits are fat with a wealth of nutrition.
Shortly after the first frost of the year is when the rosehips are at their peak of ripeness and ready for picking. Harvesting is a laborious process that requires great care to remove the hips from the tenacious thorny branches. A little twist and they are easy enough to remove, but I always walk away with battle scars. It's a little reminder to respect the plant as it gives up its fruit. I enjoy spending time with the plants in this way. It's important to developing a relationship with it and learning an appreciation for the gift it gives. The plant can be used for its petals, the rosehips, and the rosehip seeds. Today I am making a rosehip infusion.
These rosehips were hand-harvested from bushes growing wild on our 11-acres and are free from pesticides, herbicides, and other chemical interventions. Once collected my treasure is washed and then dried by the wood fire. Within hours of picking the fresh rosehips are mashed with a mortar and pestle and then infused in jojoba oil. Six to eight weeks of macerating produces a nutrient-rich oil that smells slightly sweet and nutty.
I'll use this batch to make soap, facial serum, and body oil. The hip of the rose is both astringent and demulcent (reliving inflammation and irritation) because it contains both tannins and pectins. The flesh of the hip can be used to tighten and tone tissues as well as soothe and protect. It makes it a great oil for the skin as an anti-aging therapy, reducing fine lines, and correcting dark spots. Just 2-3 drops applied to the face daily has great benefits.
I hope you enjoyed this behind the scenes look into my process. Rosehip is a highly nutritious plant part and a true gift of nature. Try these products made with rosehip infusion.
Here's to glowing skin that is well fed,
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