The Damask rose is a rose hybrid that originated from a crossbreeding, and it is one of the most unique roses. It is likely to have originated from Asia, where these beautiful pink-flowered plants have been cultivated since ancient times. It only reached Europe around the 13th century.
Characteristics of the Damask rose
This rose variety encompasses about 25-30 different types, some of which also produce rose hips. They typically grow on light green, very thorny, bushy shrubs, bearing usually pink but occasionally white fragrant flowers. Their leaves are usually grayish-green and of large size. In Europe, we only come across them occasionally because the local climate is too cold for them, as they are sensitive to frost.
Caring for the Damask rose
It has a large space requirement as it grows into bushy shrubs, so it’s worth considering this when planting. From early summer, it blooms with pink and white flowers for a few weeks. With vigorous pruning, it can be trained into a medium-sized bush. It is also advisable to remove faded flowers to promote further blooming.
Usage of the Damask rose
Primarily, it is used for making rose oil, but its petals can be utilized for rose jam, rose water, rose petal syrup, and even for making candied rose petals.
- This rose variety also possesses healing properties, as it:
- Reduces inflammation
- Relieves spasms, including muscle spasms
- Provides protection against infections
- Acts as a nerve relaxant
- Alleviates coughing, headaches, and fever
- Eases the discomfort of eczema and psoriasis symptoms
The cosmetics and beauty industry also uses it because:
- Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, it is well-suited for treating acne-prone and oily skin.
- Its moisturizing effects help improve the texture of dehydrated and dry skin.
- It slows down the skin’s aging processes.
- It strengthens cell walls.
- It nourishes the hair and adds shine to it.
Rose water, made from its petals, can be used not only for cleansing the skin but also for soothing and regenerating the skin, refreshing tired skin, and enhancing its radiance.
Rose water can also be made at home:
- 2-3 rose heads’ worth of petals
- Well-sealed jar
- 4-5 dl of water
- Thoroughly wash the rose petals, ensuring they are free from impurities and insects.
- Place them in the jar.
- Boil the water and pour it over the petals in the jar.
- Let the petals steep in the water for 3 days, stirring them every day.
- Afterward, strain the mixture into another well-sealed jar. It can be used daily.
Purchasing Damask roses
Damask roses can be purchased locally or even ordered online. Although they are delicate and do not tolerate cold and frost well, they can be grown in pots, which will then require winter protection.
The Damask rose, at the Museum Garden:
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