It hasn’t been a productive gardening season. Not yet. It has been raining a lot. And it has been cold. And digging the soil is really, really hard. My meditation / aromatherapy garden is still mostly in my head. The only thing I have to show are my growing seedlings, which are a real pleasure to look at and do make me have some sense accomplishment. I cannot believe I grew that, from seeds. These beautiful sunny plants.
But, although I didn’t get a chance to go out and transplant my garden from my head into the ground, I have been making all sorts of plans and dreams for it. Most of them involve perfumed lotions and fragrant herbal teas that will soon make my life a luxurious, scented heaven.
I have to admit that I am a veteran in this line of dreaming. As a child, I remember, one of my favorite games, on the summers spent in my grandparents’ village, was “the pharmacy”. My grandfather had made a small table and chair for me, which I had outside, near the flower garden, in the shade of the vine pergola. On the table I would have a large assortment of small bottles which I would zealously fill with rose petals and water, waiting patiently for the perfume to result. Big disappointments resulted always, let me assure you, which made me realize at the time that maybe I should look into other professions, because obviously I didn’t make a very gifted pharmacist.
I thought I would share with you the recipe for aromatic body oils (cold infused oils), which can be used for massage, for hair conditioning, as well as for moisturizing the skin.
In a jar with an airtight lid put a handful of flowers or leaves from the aromatic plants that you prefer and add a table spoon of white vinegar.
On top of this pour oil (I like almond oil, for example, but olive oil, sunflower or grape seed oils are just as good) to cover the plant matter.
Cover the jar and keep it on a sunny window sill for at least a month and try to remember to shake it every day. You can test the oil on your skin and if the fragrance is not strong enough, or not lasting, you can add new plants and repeat the process for another couple of weeks. After that, you need to strain the plant and put the oil in a pretty bottle that you can keep on your bathroom counter.
There is a great number of concoctions that can be devised from the aromatherapy garden. For me the herbal teas are very important, but I also intend to try and make body butters, essential oils and flower waters, home perfumes and aromatic sachets for closets.