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History, Description, and Chemical Composition.
This plant is indigenous to Europe, and introduced into this country; it usually attains the height of 6 or 10 feet, and flowers in June and July. The flowers are succeeded by a scarlet fruit called hip. The fruit (Rosae Caninae Fructus) was official in Br. Pharm., 1885. It is inodorous, but possesses a rather pleasant, sweetish, acidulous taste, which is increased by the action of frost. The hip or fruit (not a true fruit) consists of the developed tube of the calyx, inclosing within its cavity numerous carpels or true fruits; these must be carefully removed before it is used for pharmaceutical purposes. After having been dried it contains gum, citric acid, malic acid, a large proportion of uncrystallizable sugar, various salts, and traces of wax, resin, and volatile oil. Its properties are preserved by beating the pulp with sugar (C.). The vanilla-like fragrance of the fruits is due to the presence of vanillin (Schneegans, Jahresb. der Pharm., 1890, p. 148).
Coffee; Flowers; Fruit; Seed; Tea.
Fruit - raw or cooked. It can be used in making delicious jams, syrups etc. The syrup is used as a nutritional supplement, especially for babies. The fruit can also be dried and used as a tea. Frost softens and sweetens the flesh. The fruit is up to 30mm in diameter, but there is only a thin layer of flesh surrounding the many seeds[K]. Some care has to be taken when eating this fruit, see the notes above on known hazards.
The seed is a good source of vitamin E, it can be ground and mixed with flour or added to other foods as a supplement. Be sure to remove the seed hairs.
The dried leaves are used as a tea substitute. A coffee substitute according to another report.
Petals - raw or cooked. The base of the petal may be bitter so is best removed. Eaten as a vegetable in China. The petals are also used to make an unusual scented jam.
Plants make a dense and stock-proof hedge, especially when trimmed.
Cynomolgi has been used in ancient times as a remedy in urinary difficulties.