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Here at Rosie’s Apothecary, we like to use plants that we either grow or are familiar with. We feel it is important to understand what we are using on our bodies, so we wanted to share a brief, but fascinating history of some of the plants we use in our products with you! We hope our plant partners bring you as much joy as they have brought us! If you want to learn more about these plants, and others, sign up for our newsletter and follow us on social media, where we feature a different plant partner every week!
Disclaimer: The following information is intended for education and entertainment purposes only. It does not reflect the intended use of any product distributed by Rosie's Apothecary LLC. Our products are not intended to cure, treat, or heal any conditions or diseases. We are not medical professionals and recommend consulting a medical professional about health concerns. Our only intention is to share the rich history of the ingredients we utilize in our products.
Calendula, Calendula officinalis, a member of the Aster family more commonly known as pot marigold, is easily distinguished by its sun-like flowerheads and stickiness. Thought to be a tissue healer in German folk medicine, it was historically used for cuts, bites, burns, sunburns, scars and other skin issues. It has even been believed to be antifungal and a pain reliever. A favorite of Rosie's founder, Casey, who calls a calendula oil infusion “liquid gold”, calendula can be found scattered around her backyard in the late summer. Easy to grow in the ground or in pots, it's a great plant for beginner or busy gardeners! Should be avoided during pregnancy.
Lemon Balm, Melissa officinalis, was historically believed to be a mood booster. Used in herbal medicine to ease anxiety and depression, tension, and nervousness, lemon balm was a popular ingredient for teas and infusions, and still is due to its fresh, tart flavor described in its name. An easy-to-grow, drought-tolerant perennial that thrives in part shade, we highly recommend adding lemon balm to your garden. We let it take over, and allow some parts to go to bloom for pollinators. When using the plant for teas and other recipes, it is best to harvest before it blooms and use fresh. Propagate and share with friends!
Lavender, Lavandula spp., has long held the place in the hearts of many for its incredible aroma. It has been used for bathing since ancient times, though was believed to do more than sweeten one’s scent; lavender was believed to be antibacterial and antiseptic. Historically it was used to disinfect wounds, soothe pain, and aid in healing. Lavender was also believed to be a mood stabilizer and mild sedative. At Rosie’s Apothecary, we love the soft, purple color of lavender flowers, and enjoy watching the hummingbirds dip their bills in the cup-like petals in the summertime.
German Chamomile, Matricaria recutita, is a well-known herb from the Aster family and a popular ingredient in bedtime teas. Historically, chamomile was thought to be anti inflammatory and a powerful nervine to ease anxiety and tension. A lesser known fact is that chamomile was used for minor skin irritations. German Chamomile is an annual plant, but Roman Chamomile is a perennial. Both are believed to have similar healing properties, and pollinators can be found hanging out on the large yellow centers. Also a low maintenance, easy-to-grow plant!
Rosemary, Rosmarinus officinalis, another favorite of owner Casey Downs, and the plant featured in our logo! You’ve probably heard of rosemary, and maybe even used it in your cooking. It has long been used to spice up poultry dishes and scent cleaning products. Historically, rosemary was believed to be stimulating and restorative - in many ways! An herb for the brain, rosemary was believed to increase mental clarity and focus. Though it’s stimulating, rosemary was also believed to ease anxiety, depression, and tension in the muscles, relieve headache, as well as aiding in the healing of wounds. Believed to be antiseptic, antibacterial, and antifungal, rosemary was often used in cleaning. Rosemary is still used in haircare today, for scent, but in the past it was thought to aid in hair growth by stimulating the follicles.
Lemongrass, Cymbopogon spp., was historically believed to be antibacterial, anti inflammatory, and antifungal. Like it’s citrus namesake, it was also believed to be a stimulant and mood enhancer. We chose to use lemongrass essential oil because of its similar scent to lemon, without the phototoxic reaction that some citrus essential oils can cause.
Plantain, Plantago spp., is well-known as a stubborn weed that scatters lawns but it has a rich history as one of the most beloved plants for pain and skin issues. Historically, plantain was used as a remedy for anything from stings, to bites, scrapes, cuts, burns, sunburns, and even eczema and rosacea. Those of us who have had outdoor training may have been taught how to make the infamous spit-poultice. Plantain was also thought to be anti inflammatory, astringent, and antiviral. Some herbalists revere it for its alleged ability to pull toxins and impurities from the body, like splinters and dirt.
Rose, Rosa spp., is often considered a symbol of beauty. That, paired with its scent, has made it a staple in the beauty products since ancient times. At Rosie’s Apothecary, we use both rose petals and rosehip oil. Rosehips are the accessory fruit of the rose and are known for their Vitamin C content. In herbal medicine, roses to have anti inflammatory and pain-relieving properties, but it is their scent and flavor that has made them a household name.
(Information from "Eyewitness Handbooks: Herbs" by Lesley Bremness, "Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs" edited by Claire Kowalchik and William H. Hylton, "The New American Herbal" by Stephen Orr, The Herbarium, and personal experience.)