Today’s Aromatherapy Tip of the Day: October 29, 2013 is Potpourri and Essential Oils.
POTPOURRI AND ESSENTIAL OILS
Potpourri is a mixture of dried leaves, flowers, twigs, spices, roots, and essential oils. An abundance of plant material can be collected all year round from gardens or woods.
To make your own potpourri, it is best to gather the ingredients on a dry day. Dry your plant material on a flat surface or in net bags hanging in a dark, warm and airy place.
The spring and summer months bring a vast variety of aromatic herbs: chamomile, lavender, marjoram, Melissa, rosemary, peppermint, sage, and thyme are among the more common herbs found growing in many gardens.
Fall brings a colorful mixture of leaves, twigs, seeds, berries, and cones. These make great decorations for the festive season. Use woody essential oils to scent your decorations and/or potpourri; Cedarwood and Sandalwood are good fall scents.
During the winter months, look for eucalyptus, juniper berries, bay, rosemary, and pine. Add Bay, Eucalyptus, Juniper, Rosemary, and/or pine essential oils to scent. Remember to choose no more than three essential oils at a time.
You can use different colored peels of fruit (dried in an oven or microwave). Add any three of the citrus essential oils for a zesty, fruity aroma. This is a great potpourri for the kitchen.
Rose petals, feverfew, and marigolds are among the hundreds of flowers which can be dried and used to make a colorful potpourri for any room. Add any three of the floral essential oils to your mix.
If you are unable to find the plant material you desire in nature, your local health food shop and/or local supermarket should have a selection of herbs, spices, seeds, and bark to choose from.
Place your dried ingredients into a bowl. In a separate bowl, prepare your blend of essential oils. Make sure to add a fixative essential oil to your blend; Benzoin, Cedarwood, Myrrh, Patchouli, Sandalwood, or Vetivert. Personally, I use 15 drops essential oils to a small bowl of potpourri and 45 drops to a large bowl. For instance, for a small bowl of dried flowers potpourri, I would use the blend:
5 drops Roman Chamomile Essential Oil
5 drops Lavender Essential Oil
3 drops Rose Essential Oil
2 drops Rosemary Essential Oil for my fixative oil
Swirl to mix oils thoroughly.
Gently blend the oils to the dried potpourri, taking care not to crush any of the dried leaves or petals. Once your potpourri is coated with a fine film of essential oils, cover the mixture with a lid and seal it. Let it sit for 5 to 7 days; giving the ingredients a chance to mature. Once matured, you can pour your potpourri into a small decorative bowl that will give a room a fragrant aroma.
For gifts, you can place the mature potpourri in a sachet to be placed inside a pillowcase (between the pillow and the pillowcase) or in a muslin bag for a bath sachet.
To Keep Moths at Bay: Hang or place sachets filled with clove buds and clove essential oil in your closets, cupboards, and/or drawers.
Car Pomander: To help keep car driver’s awake and alert, fill a sachet with dried basil and rosemary herbs along with basil and rosemary essential oils.
For a large bowl of dried potpourri for the Autumn Season:
15 drops Cedarwood Essential Oil
15 drops Pine Essential Oil
10 drops Sandalwood Essential Oil
5 drops Patchouli Essential Oil for the fixative oil
Swirl to mix oils thoroughly.
Proceed as above. Let the mixture sit for the full 7 days. Pour the matured potpourri into a large decorative bowl or several small decorative bowls.
Strategically set a few Black, Brown, and Orange Candles near the bowls for a perfect Autumn Centerpiece.
Check Back Tomorrow for Essential Oils: The Unseen Energies.
Debra Mauldin, Certified Aromatherapist
Feel free to contact me with any questions you may have pertaining to using essential oils as aromatherapy. Please put ‘Aromatherapy’ in the subject line.
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Resource: Aromatherapy Blends & Recipes by Franzesca Watson