Right here, in this wild universe, we are at home in our solar system, within an eternity system. I am thankful the universe has my back, and has given me the correct coordinates for returning home to our Yoop.
I am composed by the ink of Mama Nature’s blueprint to discover Wild Rose growing peacefully on the dunes and rocky shores of the Big Water to the plains of Jack Pine. Like her sister the apple, she is a wild child of the five star-petaled Rose Family. Pretty in pink, Rosa acicularis appears delicate, yet her feminine mojo is a sub-arctic generator not just of pretty things – she is also rooted in old world plant wisdom, nurturing life around us and in us.
With Autumn’s equinox, her hips are ripened and ready to harvest. Each rose berry is red, round and fleshy – pregnant with a belly of seeds. She asks us to be patient and wait until the first frost energizes her life force with a higher concentration of Vitamin C. This is her elegant equation to answer winter’s call. Vitamin C is optimal when ingested as a whole food, rather than by pill or in capsule form. Wild Rose encourages us to stay with what comes naturally, following this sweet timing, as each seed of good work today is the fruition of tomorrow.
A pouch is helpful for collecting each berry with blessings and patience. Upon harvest, wash and dry your rose hips. Cut open each from top to tail. I use a butter knife to clean out all seeds and fuzzy hairs as they will tickle the throat if not removed. Once cleaned, place on a cookie sheet and re-check that all seeds and fuzzies have been removed. She is a wild food and ready to serve.
Indigenous plants usually have more than one job to do, and Wild Rose is no exception. Begin your relationship with her authentically by keeping your interactions simple. I have made rose hip honey, “the Nectar of the North,” by packing a sterilized jar full of clean, freshly cut rose hips and infusing to the tippy-top with raw local honey. Place your filled, closed jar in a cool, dark cupboard for about six weeks, allowing the goodness of Bee and Hip to synergize flavonoids and Vitamin C along with other vital vitamins and minerals. Once infused, no need to press the hip from the honey, but “in joy” on toast, as a yogurt topping, in home-made dressing, and/or as a skin mask.
Heat deteriorates Vitamin C levels so I dapple rose hip honey on my pancakes rather than baking it in them. Rose hip honey nurtures children, and carries a faint fragrance similar to apple. The water solubility of its Vitamin C makes it especially lovely in mint tea. This combo is my constant companion during winter’s stay.
I invite you to discover and cultivate your relationship with Wild Rose to raise your health and happiness. May your discovery be her gift.
KimAnn Forest is a wild-harvest herbalist of our beloved U.P., a life ceremony officiant, and crystal bowl sound healer. Email:firstname.lastname@example.org. Facebook: KimAnn Forest.
Photo courtesy of KimAnn Forest.
Excerpted with permission from Health & Happiness U.P. Magazine, Fall 2018 Issue, copyright 2018. All rights reserved.