By Maryann Readal
If you grow roses, plan now for rose hips. Simply leave the spent flowers on your rose bushes after their last bloom of the season. Do NOT cut them off. Allow the fruits of the rose, which are the rose “hips,” to ripen on the bush. The hips will turn red or orange depending on the rose variety. When the sides of the hips are soft to the touch, they are ready to harvest. Waiting to harvest until after the first light frost increases the flavor of the hips.
Now, you may be wondering why you should allow your roses to form hips. Here are some good reasons:
- Ounce for ounce, rose hips contain eight times more vitamin C than oranges, according to the US Department of Agriculture Food Data Central.
- They are also rich in vitamins A, B, E, and K, as well as other nutrients.
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