Wild Harvest | Rosehips

Rosehips are absolutely beautiful! They really brighten up a hedgerow and there's something very...wild about them. When collecting rosehips, you really REALLY feel like you're foraging. Wild harvest. This is what it's all about. I thought I wasn't going to be able to do this post this year because I left it a bit late...but the rosehips were late this year anyway so I guess it was meant to be! So here is your Guide to Foraging for Rosehips.

Where can I find rosehips?

Rosehips grow on roses (shock, I know), specifically wild roses. The dog-rose, and the field-rose. (Rosa canina and Rosa arvensis) They will grow in hedgerows and woodlands and are widespread throughout Europe, western Asia and north-west Africa. 

How to identify rosehips

Roses are tall, long, rambling plants that can reach between 1-5m by themselves, and taller if climbing a tree. It has really REALLY sharp thorns, for defence presumably and to help it climb. It produces flowers in the spring ranging from pale pink to dark pink.

When to harvest rosehips

Depending on where you are, rosehips can be harvested any time from late summer all the way through to December (as I've found out this year). They start off green and then slowly change to orange and are fully ripe when they're a deep red colour and this is the best time to harvest them. Ideally wait until after a frost to harvest them, or else freeze them overnight and this makes them just a little bit sweeter.

What can you do with rosehips?

Rosehips are actually a really sweet fruit once it's been prepared. You can make a syrup from it which is beautiful drizzled over pancakes or ice cream. You can make a cordial which you can mix with cocktails or mix as a refreshing summer drink. You can make a herbal tea from them. Jelly. Cakes. The list is endless. It's a very versatile fruit.

A few things to watch out for...

As I've already pointed out, roses have some very sharp thorns so I recommend wearing gloves when foraging for these little beauties. And a very important thing to note is that the seeds are an irritant. In fact, they're used in itching powder (true story, look it up). So in order to use them in cooking, they have to be boiled and strained several times to remove the seeds. 

I hope you enjoy your foraging trip. Here's a little reminder of how to be a responsible forager...

What have you been foraging for?

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  2. Rosehips are william larue weller absolutely beautiful! They really brighten up a hedgerow and there's something very...wild about them


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