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Rose (Rosa damascena)

    Rose Damascena

    Family: Rosaceae

    Grow zone: 4-9

    Rose (Rosa damascena) has been traditionally used for its aromatic and therapeutic properties, including its potential effects on emotional well-being. While scientific research on the specific use of rose for treating depression and anxiety is limited, the pleasant aroma and potential calming properties of rose essential oil have been associated with mood enhancement and relaxation. Here is an overview of using rose for potential emotional benefits:

    1. Aromatherapy: The fragrance of rose essential oil is commonly used in aromatherapy to promote relaxation and uplift the mood. Inhalation of rose essential oil may have a soothing effect on the mind and help reduce stress and anxiety. You can use rose essential oil in a diffuser, inhale it directly from the bottle, or add a few drops to a warm bath.
    2. Massage: Rose essential oil can be diluted in a carrier oil, such as jojoba or sweet almond oil, and used for a relaxing massage. The gentle massage combined with the aromatic properties of rose oil can help relieve tension, promote relaxation, and create a sense of well-being.
    3. Inhalation: Inhaling the aroma of rose petals or rose essential oil can have a calming effect on the nervous system. You can place dried rose petals in a bowl and inhale their scent or add a few drops of rose essential oil to a tissue or handkerchief and inhale as needed.
    4. Herbal Tea: Rose petals can be dried and used to make a fragrant herbal tea. While the direct effects of rose tea on depression and anxiety are not well-studied, the act of sipping a warm, aromatic beverage can be soothing and contribute to a sense of relaxation.
    5. Bathing: Adding rose petals or a few drops of rose essential oil to a warm bath can create a calming and sensory experience. The soothing aroma and the act of self-care through bathing can help reduce stress and promote relaxation.

    It’s important to note that individual responses to aromatherapy and herbal remedies may vary. Some people may find the scent of rose to be uplifting and comforting, while others may have different preferences or reactions. If you have any known allergies or sensitivities to rose or its essential oil, it’s best to avoid using it or consult with a healthcare professional before trying it.

    While using rose as a complementary approach for managing mood and emotions can be beneficial for some individuals, it should not replace professional medical advice or prescribed treatments for depression and anxiety. If you are experiencing severe or persistent symptoms, it is essential to seek guidance from a healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.

    Medicinal Effects:

    Analgesic (Pain - reduce; Anodyne): Relieves or diminishes pain
    Anti-inflammatory: Alleviate inflammation throughout the body
    Anti-viral: destroy and inhibit the spread of viral infections
    Antibacterial: destroy or inhibit the growth of bacteria  
    Antidepressive (Mental Health - Depression; Depression):
    Antioxidant: A substance such as vitamin C or E that removes potentially damaging oxidizing agents in a living organism.
    Antiseptic (syn. Germicides): Destroys or controls pathogenic bacteria. Used topically  
    Antispasmodic (syn. Spasmolytics; Spasms - reduce): prevents and eases spasms and relieves cramps  
    Anxiety - Reduce (Mental health - Anxiety):
    Aphrodisiac (Sex Drive - Increase):
    Aromatic (Essential Oils):
    Astringent (Also See Acne):
    Cicatrisant (Skin - Scar Stimulant):
    Depurative (Purify; Detox): Depurative herbs assist in purifying and cleansing the blood, aiding in the elimination of toxins and promoting optimal health.
    Emmenagogue (Menstrual; Uterine tonic): stimulates, regulates, and normalizes menstruation
    Hepatic (Liver Function):
    Laxative: Aids bowel evacuation  
    Nervine - Nerves - Nervous System:
    Sedative (also see Hypnotic):

    How to grow and harvest

    Growing and harvesting Rose (Rosa damascena) can be a rewarding experience, especially if you’re interested in using the petals for various purposes, such as aromatherapy or culinary applications. Here are some guidelines for growing and harvesting Rose (Rosa damascena):

    1. Climate: Rosa damascena thrives in temperate climates. It prefers moderate temperatures and can tolerate both hot summers and cold winters. Ideally, it grows well in USDA hardiness zones 5-9.
    2. Sunlight: Roses require full sun exposure for at least 6-8 hours a day. Choose a location in your garden that receives ample sunlight.
    3. Soil: Roses prefer well-draining soil with a slightly acidic to neutral pH (around 6.0-7.0). Before planting, amend the soil with organic matter such as compost to improve its fertility and drainage.
    4. Planting: Roses can be planted in the spring or fall when the soil is workable. Dig a hole that is wide and deep enough to accommodate the root ball of the rose plant. Place the rose plant in the hole, making sure the bud union (the swollen area where the rose is grafted onto the rootstock) is level with or slightly above the soil surface. Backfill the hole with soil, gently firming it around the roots.
    5. Watering: Roses require regular watering, especially during dry spells. Water deeply at the base of the plant rather than sprinkling water on the leaves. Avoid overwatering, as it can lead to root rot. Mulching around the base of the plant can help conserve moisture and suppress weeds.
    6. Pruning: Regular pruning is essential for rose plants to promote healthy growth and flowering. Prune in early spring before new growth begins or after the last frost. Remove dead, damaged, or crossing branches. Prune to shape the plant and encourage airflow. Regular deadheading (removing spent flowers) can also promote continuous blooming.
    7. Pest and Disease Control: Roses are susceptible to pests like aphids, spider mites, and diseases like black spot and powdery mildew. Monitor your plants regularly and take necessary steps to control pests and diseases. This may include using organic pest control methods or consulting with a local gardening expert for guidance.
    8. Harvesting: Harvesting the rose petals is usually done when the flowers are in full bloom and have a strong fragrance. Choose roses that are healthy and free from damage or disease. Gently pluck or cut the petals from the base of the flower, taking care not to damage the remaining parts of the plant. You can use the petals immediately or dry them for later use.

    Remember to consult local gardening resources or experts for specific guidance regarding growing and caring for roses in your region. Different varieties of Rosa damascena may have slightly different growth habits and requirements, so it’s important to choose cultivars suitable for your climate and follow specific care instructions for optimal results.

    How to use as medicine:

    Rose (Rosa damascena) has been used for centuries in traditional medicine for its potential health benefits. While scientific research on the specific medicinal uses of Rosa damascena is limited, it is believed to have certain properties that may contribute to overall well-being. Here are some ways rose can be used as a natural remedy:

    1. Rose Tea: The petals of Rosa damascena can be dried and used to make a fragrant herbal tea. To prepare rose tea, steep a handful of dried rose petals in hot water for a few minutes. Strain and drink the infused tea. Rose tea is often enjoyed for its calming properties and pleasant aroma.
    2. Rose Essential Oil: Rosa damascena essential oil is highly concentrated and extracted from the petals. It is used in aromatherapy and as a topical application. The aroma of rose essential oil is known for its soothing effects and is often used to promote relaxation and uplift the mood. It can be diffused in a room or diluted with a carrier oil for topical use.
    3. Rose Water: Rose water is a byproduct of the steam distillation process used to extract rose essential oil. It has a mild floral scent and can be used as a facial toner, refreshing mist, or added to bathwater for a relaxing soak. Rose water is known for its hydrating and soothing properties.
    4. Culinary Use: Rosa damascena petals can be used in cooking and baking to add a subtle floral flavor and aroma. They can be added to dishes like salads, desserts, or infused into syrups or jellies. It is important to use edible roses that are free from pesticides or other harmful chemicals.

    It’s important to note that while rose and its derivatives are generally considered safe for most people, individual sensitivities or allergies may exist. If you have known allergies or sensitivities to roses, it’s best to avoid using rose products or consult with a healthcare professional before trying them.

    While rose may have potential benefits for mood and overall well-being, it is not intended to replace professional medical advice or prescribed treatments for depression and anxiety. If you are experiencing severe or persistent symptoms, it is essential to seek guidance from a healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment plan.

    rose tincture recipe

    A tincture made from rose petals can be effective in addressing sadness, grief, depression, anxiety or insomnia.

    To make a basic rose tincture, you will need the following ingredients and materials:


    • Fresh or dried rose petals (enough to fill a jar)
    • High-proof alcohol (such as vodka or brandy)


    • Glass jar with a tight-fitting lid
    • Cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer
    • Amber glass dropper bottles for storage

    Here’s a step-by-step guide to making a rose tincture:

    1. Clean and dry the glass jar thoroughly to ensure it is free from any contaminants.
    2. Collect fresh rose petals or use dried rose petals. Ensure that the petals are clean and free from pesticides or other chemicals. If using fresh petals, allow them to wilt slightly for a few hours to reduce moisture content.
    3. Fill the glass jar with rose petals, leaving some headspace at the top.
    4. Pour the high-proof alcohol into the jar, covering the rose petals completely. Make sure the alcohol is of sufficient strength (at least 40% ABV) to effectively extract the medicinal properties.
    5. Use a clean spoon or chopstick to gently stir the mixture, ensuring that all the petals are submerged in the alcohol.
    6. Seal the jar tightly with the lid.
    7. Place the jar in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight. Allow it to steep for at least 4 to 6 weeks. You can occasionally shake the jar gently to enhance the extraction process.
    8. After the steeping period, strain the tincture using a cheesecloth or fine mesh strainer to separate the liquid from the rose petals. Squeeze out as much liquid as possible.
    9. Transfer the strained tincture into amber glass dropper bottles for storage. Amber glass helps protect the tincture from light degradation.
    10. Label the bottles with the date and contents.

    Dosage: The dosage of rose tincture can vary depending on individual needs and the intended use. It is recommended to start with a small dose (e.g., a few drops) and gradually increase if needed. Consult with a qualified herbalist or healthcare professional for personalized dosage recommendations.

    Note: This recipe provides a general guideline for making a rose tincture. It’s important to research and ensure the safety and proper dosage of any herbal preparation before use. If you are unsure or have any concerns, it’s best to consult with a qualified herbalist or healthcare professional before making or using a homemade tincture.