Roses are a mainstay of many gardens, and homes. They are beautiful, adaptable and come in a multitude of forms and colors, making them essential landscaping tools for many gardeners. However, roses also have their uses outside the garden. They can be used in the kitchen, in the bath, and even as an essential part of gifts for special occasions.
Roses and romance have long been linked in popular culture, so it's no surprise that they play an important part in modern courtship rituals and seductions. Rose petals can be used to good effect in several ways, if you have love in mind. For instance, scattering rose petals in a trail from the door to the bedroom is quiet a romantic way to invite your loved one in. Even better, scattering rose petals across the bed, or across the table during a romantic, candlelit dinner, can make your intentions clear.
Dried rose petal confetti is the hit of any wedding. Not only is it thrown on the young couple after they have taken their vows, but it is often splashed on the isle in front of the bride before she goes down the isle. Perhaps it is a blessing to the young couple wishing them the best of luck in their new life together. Whatever the rose symbolism, anyone would admit that it is a beautiful way to begin the new adventure.
Rose petals make excellent, fragrant packing material in gifts and cards. Imagine the look on your loved one's face as they open a Valentine's Day card and a shower of rose petals dipped in glitter falls out. Damp rose petals inside a clear balloon can lend a decorative air to any affair, and can make wonderful confetti if you pop the balloon.
Besides romance, roses are used for their scent. Like many flowers, roses have an alluring, pleasing scent that can soothe the soul and ease the mind, and they are frequently used in one form or another for aromatherapy. Take a crock pot, fill it with water, heat it up and pour two handfuls of rose petals inside and let it simmer, and fill your home with a sweet fragrance. You can also let rose petals float in a bowl of water, with or without a candle, for a fainter, more subtle scent. Throwing petals in a fire achieves much the same effect, especially if you put them in early, before the fire heats up, or very late, as the fire is burning down. You can also use them in a rose petal bubble bath, much like bath salts, where their subtle scent will seep into your skin and give you a pleasing odor all day.
We've covered romance and scents. Now it's cooking's turn. Roses have a unique place in the kitchen. Roses are one of the strongest sources of Vitamin C on the planet, and the rose hips are used in a variety of vitamins and foods. Cooking with rose hips will lend an interesting flavor and scent to your meal. You can also use rose petal in home-made ice cream.
Rose petals have many uses, once separated from the plant: in romance from dried rose pillowcases to candlelit dinners with petals scattered around the table, to the many cooking uses, as well as a number of uses not mentioned here. They provide an element of class to go with their sweet fragrance, and can enliven even the dullest meal or bath. Using rose petals can also provide plenty of opportunities for creativity in your home.
Bob Leland is a Rose Growing enthusiast. Visit About The Care of Roses for more Rose Growing advice, including rose petal projects. http://www.aboutthecareofroses.com/RosePetals.xhtml
Photo Credit: Natara