Herb of the Week: Apothecary’s Rose

Rosa gallica var. officinalis

Common names: The Apothecary’s Rose, Rose of Lancaster, Provins Rose

History/Folklore: Rosa gallica was beloved to have originated in Persia and was brought to Europe by the Crusaders. There is mention of monks growing and using roses medicinally in the 13th Century. The extensive use of this rose medicinally became synonymous with European Apothecaries. So much so that rose bushes were planted outside of the Apothecaries to symbolize their profession (similar to the scales for lawyers).

Various methods of use have been noted in Ayurvedic, Chinese, European and North American herbal practices. There are Teas, tinctures, salves, honeys, jellies, vinegars and even flavoring wines. For Aromatherapy and Body care, Rose water and infused Rose Oil can be made. Of course, there is always Attar of Rose or Rose Otto to pr

ovide a sense of well being.

Appearance:Rough medium green leaves, small thorns with semi double deep pink flowers. Rosehips are small on this rose.

Parts Used: Floral petals

Collection: Gather petals in early morning once the dew has dried before bloom fully open. Rosehips gathered in fall while still plump

Actions: Slightly astringent, mildly sedative, anti-inflammatory

Indications: Rose hips are high in vitamins C, A & E. Externally as a wound wash, to ease itching and swelling from insect bites. Tea made with petals and rosehips can alleviate inflammation, problems with the digestive system, relieve symptoms of arthritis,

Contraindications: Avoid excessive rosehip use if taking Warfarin (Coumadin)



Cultivation: Cuttings

Zones: 3-8

Light: Full Sun to part Shade

Plant Type:  Herbaceous shrub

 Rose Jelly

4 cups rose petals
1 1/4 cups water
juice of 2 lemons
1 cup white sugar

2 tablespoons rose water

Place rose petals and water in a medium saucepan and bring slowly to a simmer.

Simmer for 15 minutes.

Stir in sugar and lemon juice, continuously stirring until sugar dissolves.

Bring to a boil and cook steadily for 15-20 minutes until jam starts to thicken. Stir in the sugar and lemon juice and bring to a boil, stirring continuously

Remove from heat and stir in the rose water.

Pour into sterile jelly jars and seal.

This is not a typical Jelly – it is more syrupy

You will want to use pectin if you want a firmer jelly.


About Airmeith Naturals

Anna has over 25 years of experience working with herbs. She trained as a chef specializing in classical French cuisine. Anna has extensive knowledge of herbs used in cooking, as well as having researched the historic use of culinary herbs & spices. She is a Certified Community Herbalist who has completed multiple apprenticeships and classes with renowned Herbalists along with her own studies. Her concentration is in Western European Herbal Practices. She has attended college for Environmental Science as well as earning her certificate in Massage Therapy and is licensed in the state of Massachusetts. In addition, Anna is a Certified Reiki Master Teacher. Anna lives in Western Massachusetts with her family and has over an acre of gardens to play in. Anna is the herbalist at Airmeith Naturals in Holyoke Massachusetts
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