Growing on the High Plains: Rose Rocks

Feb 8, 2018

While beautiful to behold, "rose rocks" carry a legend that unearths an ugly chapter of American history.

They say, “Every rose has its thorn,” but not the beautiful blooms cropping up on today’s Growing on the High Plains. Nor do they require watering, pruning, or pest control—and yet they give new meaning to the word “perennial!”

With their perfect petals and pinkish hues, “rose rocks” aren’t actually flowers but weathered sandstone resembling faux flora, formed from crystals and quartz. (And just like me, they get a little blush thanks to the iron-rich soil of Oklahoma.) But according to the Cherokee Nation, the legend behind these geological rarities is no bed of roses.