Foraging: Rose Hips & Making Rose Hip Tea

By : | 12 Comments | On : August 12, 2015 | Category : Dehydrating, Food, Foraging, Preserve, Recipes, Tea

Harvest Season

After two weeks of mostly overcast skies coupled with the occasional thunderstorm, I am beginning to feel that the earliest signs of fall are upon us here in Prince George.

Kevin assures me with weather-weary complaints that the heat rages on in the Columbia Valley – but northward, my uncle and I are convinced the summer season is already coming to a close, while fall embarks to envelope us in a cloudy embrace.

A long fall season would be wonderful remembering our past bitterly cold winter winds and having had enough summer heat to keep water reservoirs depleted for several recent weeks. Summer always brings a rush toward green growth and waterside adventures; while autumns vibrant colors and crisp air make me long for evenings spent in big comfy sweaters sipping on hot chocolate (or tea;)) whilst engaged in long conversations.

Among the early stages of the change in seasons are the cooler evenings and falling leaves as the landscape progresses from lush greenery to golden red hues – just like that.

foraging rose hips

Wild Roses

What were roses seemingly days ago have now passed into rose hips, already displaying fall colors, ripening from orange into a deep red.
Most will be left on the plants all winter for the wildlife to enjoy; but I plan to forage a healthy harvest to keep me in tea and jelly throughout the year.

Unlike back home, Prince George is positively abundant with wild roses.

Waiting until after the first frost to harvest will cause the fruit to sweeten further, but I will already be headed home to Columbia Valley before then – and my one little rose plant at home can’t meet the demand.:)

We tend to get more than our fair share of rain in the Columbia Valley as well, which serves to decimate any hanging fruit.

In other words – I’m stocking up on this delicious fruit while I can!

Rose petals and hips from all true roses are edible, they are from the Rosaceae family and are related to apples, cherries, strawberries, and almonds to name but a few.

Rose hips are incredibly high in vitamin C (10 – 20 times that of an orange by volume) and full of antioxidants. It’s often used to help prevent and fight colds and flu.


Be sure to collect hips that have not been sprayed with chemicals. Do not harvest from roadside bushes as they may be coated in vehicle exhaust.

Fresh rose hips can be eaten straight off the plant – but be sure to remove the seeds and ‘hairs’ from inside them.

The seeds are liable to break a tooth, and the ‘hairs’ inside rose hips are used to make ‘itching powder’ – they will cause irritation and you do not want that moving through your system.;)

When used in teas or boiled and strained for the infused liquid only, rose hips can be dried whole; otherwise, cut them in half and remove the seeds and fine hairs.

Foraging and Dehydrating Rose Hips

Rose hips will pull away from the plant very easily, you will not need scissors, but depending on the rose variety you may want to wear gloves.

Prepare the rose hips by twisting off the ends, and removing the insides (depending on how you plan to use them).

Give them a rinse under cold water, pat dry, and spread in a single layer on a baking sheet.

The rose hips can then be left in a dark, well ventilated room to dry (10 days or more), dried in a dehydrator, or oven on the lowest setting.

When they are completely dried, store in an airtight container out of direct sunlight.

Making Rose Hip Tea

A simple rose hip tea can be made using 1 – 2 tsps. of dried rose hips or 1 – 2 tbsps. fresh rose hips per 1 cup boiled water. Allow hips to steep covered for 10 – 15 minutes, strain, sweeten, and enjoy.

Once rehydrated after steeping for tea, remove the rose hip seeds and eat the fruit for an extra vitamin C boost.

I have some pineapple weed air drying and the scent is so lovely I decided to make a mixed-forage tea.
It made a refreshing and light tea with amazing aromatics.

I didn’t measure anything, instead I opted to throw a few things in a french pressfrench press in the order I craved them. Adjust at your discretion.;)

Rose Hip Tea Blend

Rose hipsrose hips
Pineapple weed (wild chamomile)
Lemon zest
Caraway seed
& Honey

If you are craving a deeper flavored tea, add some of your favorite teatea as a base – try hibiscus, green, black, or rooibos, or add fresh/dried currants, blueberries, apple, strawberry or raspberry for fruitier caffeine free blend.

Enjoy the harvest.:)

What is your favorite rose hip tea blend?

foraging rose hips & rose hip pineapple weed tea

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Comments (12)

  1. posted by johnhutchens1 on August 14, 2015

    I love rose hip tea. I just collected my rose hips this week. I love this tea in the cold winter months.

    • posted by YogurtHydro on August 18, 2015

      It makes a great addition to tea, I am loving the fact that Prince George has such an abundance of them to gather.:) I do find it tedious to remove the insides though, and the ‘hairs’ get all over my clothes and drive me mad lol. Drying them whole is so much simpler. Do you dry them whole?

  2. posted by Leisel on August 16, 2015

    I love this idea. I’m not really sure when it would be a good idea to harvest mine, though. I tried last year and failed dismally. My Knockout Rose bushes have got to be good for something, other than trying to kill me when I have to suck it up and prune them!

    • posted by YogurtHydro on August 18, 2015

      LOL! This is how I feel about the evergreen blackberries I forage – so many thorns that you look like you got into an argument with a pack of feral cats if you’re not careful lol. Denim, leather and gloves – that’s all I can tell you! Luckily, these wild roses don’t have too much in the way of thorns.
      Once your rose hips are red, you can give it another go.:)

  3. posted by Stacey @ Stacey Homemaker on August 16, 2015

    I’ve never seen wild rose hips like that! They’re beautiful! I would love to make my own tea, I’ll definitely give this a go! Thanks for joining the Food Stars link party! I hope to see you next week too =)

    • posted by YogurtHydro on August 18, 2015

      They are a great forage right before the winter months – tons of vitamin C to fight off colds and flu. Although my picky other half is afraid to try anything new, I love them in tea lol. I’ll be sure to link up next time Stacey, thanks for stopping by.:)

  4. posted by Kelly on August 23, 2015

    I am hoping we have these on our property. I have hear there is a ton you can do with Rose Hips.

    • posted by YogurtHydro on September 4, 2015

      They are delicious. My aunt makes rose hip jelly tarts that are to die for. I hope you found some!

  5. posted by Jasmine P on August 28, 2015

    Thanks for sharing this!!

    • posted by YogurtHydro on September 4, 2015

      You’re welcome – Thanks for reading Jasmine.:)

  6. posted by alicia szemon on November 23, 2015

    mmm(: i need to try this!

  7. posted by krysprincess on February 28, 2016

    Thanks for sharing this never heard of this recipe before should try it sometime


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