Red Roselle Hibiscus
Posted by Stephanie Jones on
What’s your passion? I have many. Early in life I found dancing. Then in my 20’s I grew to love gardening, soap making, and crafting. Later in life that has grown and evolved into sustainable farming, supporting the eat local movement, and growing foods that can’t be found in the grocery store.
Red Roselle Hibiscus is one of those plants. I can’t just go to the grocery store and buy fresh Hibiscus. But man can I grow it! This is a beautiful, and amazing plant that is also edible! The Roselle Hibiscus can grow over six feet tall and just as wide in just one season. Each flower only blooms once, usually opens in the mornings and then closes mid afternoon. The green leaves are edible and so are the flowers!
The flowers can be harvested when first opened and preserved by floating in a bowl of water in your fridge. The flowers make a beautiful garnish on a plate or the petals can be added to salads. Once the flower closes, the calyx (the part the flower blooms out of) starts to produce a seed pod. As that seed pod grows, the calyx gets bigger. This is a good time to harvest the calyx. Once harvested, open it to discard the seed pod within. What’s left, is the bright red, cranberry-citrus flavored goodness that can be made into teas, juice, jelly’s, and chutneys. Red Roselle Hibiscus is full of Vitamin C, especially in the green leaves.
It can also be used to make a natural pink dye. I’ve decided I want to try to use this hibiscus to color a batch of soap naturally. I’m thinking about video documenting this process. Please comment below if you’d be interested in seeing the process beginning to end! Planting, harvesting, making the dye and then turning it into a naturally colored hibiscus soap! 🌺 🌺 🌺
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