of the Essential Oils
Citrus auranticum ssp. bergamia Rutaceae
stomachic; antispasmodic; cephalic; antibiotic; anti-inflammatory;
antiseptic; febrifuge; appetite stimulant; cicatrizant; digestive
stimulant; bactericide; parasiticide; relaxant; sedative; tonic; nerve
tonic; uplifting; refreshing
WARNING: Avoid exposure to sunlight; phototoxic. Not for those with
very sensitive or fair skins. Only use, 5-1% dilution in base oil.
PLANT: Asia; now Italy, Tree; 5m high; fruit like miniature oranges;
white flowers; thorny branches; peel of fruit.
OIL: hand expression, peel green to olive green, fruity; fresh; citrussy;
almost universally liked.Cultivated today in the Ivory Coast (not
very successfully), Southern Italy (at Bergamot) and the Canary Islands,
where it is believed that Christopher Columbus introduced it. An ingredient
in Hungary water; Flavourant in Earl Grey tea. Bergamot is a hybrid
of bitter orange and lemon. Tests in Psychiatric hospitals show that
bergamot acts on the hypothalamus.
Salvia sclarea Labiatae
antidepressant; stimulating; regenerating; antiseptic; relaxing; balancing;
inspiring; revitalizing; aphrodisiac; antispasmodic; bactericide;
hormonal; nerve tonic; galactagogue; sedative; warming; soothing.
WARNING: Can induce vivid dreams; do not drink alcohol after use;
avoid during pregnancy; never take orally with any medication that
PLANT: Italy; Syria; S France. Herb; to 3ft tall; tall flower spikes;
hairy leaves; flowers blue, violet, lilac, pink; whorls from terminal
OIL: steam distilled, flowering tops and leaves clear; colourless;
nutty; hay-like; warm; sweet; retsina-like. The name is thought to
derive from the Latin clarus meaning 'clear', and was widely used
to clear foreign bodies from the eyes. The oil was used in Germany
to make clary wine out of inferior wines, due to its euphoric effects.
Russia is now one of the largest suppliers of this plant. The plant
used to be cultivated only in France for the oil.
Pelargonium graveolens; Pelargonium asperum; Podorantissmum Geraniaceae
EFFECTS: antidepressant; regenerative; circulation
stimulant; balancing; astringent; analgesic; anticoagulant; antifungal;
antiseptic; digestive; tonic; anti?inflammatory; cicatrizant; antispasmodic;
hormonal; lymph gland stimulant; refreshing; relaxing; diuretic
WARNING: Avoid in pregnancy
PLANT: South Africa, herb
OIL: steam distilled, plant; stalks; leaves; flowers; flowering tops
greenish sweet; distinctive; green
There are over 700 species of this plant, but only two are used for
aromatherapy. Pelargoniums were introduced to Europe in the 17th century.
Reunion, France, Morocco and China produce the oil. Nicholas Culpepper
used it as a haemostat and to all green wounds and ulcers.
Citrus auranticum amara; Citrus bigardia Rutaceae
EFFECTS: antiseptic; bactericide; balancing;
hypotensive; relaxing; nerve tonic; antispasmodic
PLANT: China; Seville orange and the bitter orange are names given
to this tree; white flowers
OIL: enfleurage; steam distilled, orange flowers thick; deep brown
The tree is widely cultivated in the Mediterranean area. It takes
1 ton of handpicked blooms to yield 1kg of oil. It is thought the
oil was named after a princess of Neroli who loved the fragrance so
much, that she scented her bath water and all her clothes with it.
It has been used in bridal headdresses for centuries because the scent
was said to calm the bride's nerves.
Lavandula augustifolia; Lavandula officinalis Labiatae
EFFECTS: analgesic; anti-allergic; bactericide;
anticoagulant; antiseptic; softening; anti-pruritic; anti-inflammatory;
antispasmodic; cicatrizant; hypotensive; relaxing;
sedative; tonic Therapeutic; refreshing; rejuvenating
WARNING: Avoid in pregnancy
PLANT: Mediterranean, herb; evergreen; mauve flowers, silver leaves;
fragrant shrub native to Southern Europe. The oil glands are in tiny
star-shaped hairs that cover the flowers, leaves and stems.
OIL: steam distilled, flowering tops, distilled in the fields where
they are grown.
Commercially grown in France, Spain, Bulgaria, Russia. Used for centuries,
as a perfume, and antidote to snake venom, as an insect repellant.
Queen Elizabeth drank lavender tea for migraines. 100 kg flowers needed
for 5-600g of oil.
and text adapted from "Aromatherapy for Natural Health and
Beauty" (1st edition) by Cecilia Salvesen
Published by Salvesen Publishers, South Africa 2000