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Blossom Oils For Blooming Summer

by Barbara Payne(more info)

listed in aromatherapy, originally published in issue 112 - June 2005

"The roses make the world so sweet,
The bees, the birds have such a tune,
There's such a light and such a heat,
And such a joy in June"
George MacDonald (1824-1905)

This little poem certainly encapsulates the essence of early summer. It is true that MacDonald lived in a bygone age when life was lived at a slower pace, but the sentiments are still true today if we implement certain strategies early in the summer. The secret thereafter, is to take the time to enjoy the results. Anyone who has a scented rose in the garden will tell you there is nothing quite like the scent of full-bodied face-on rose blooms after a summer shower. That smell does make the world seem sweeter and really is what aromatherapy is all about. If you do not have this pleasure, then why not treat your patio or yard to a potted rose. Through the sense of smell we can achieve a more relaxed and positive life with environmental fragrancing and making our own products to enhance a feeling of well-being.

The fragrance of many of the early summer blossoms is very uplifting and relaxing. Consider some of these; chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile), rose (Rosa damascene), and a little later on lavender (Lavandular angustifolia), along with herbal smells such as sweet marjoram (Origanum marjorana) and the mints (Mentha). All these plants produce essential oils, which may be enjoyed at any time. When things get hectic and the weather is tiring, the smell of these plants in my garden is enough to raise my spirits, but at other times a home-made product such as hand cream is a boon too. They can be both economical and pleasant to use.

Environmental Fragrancing

When we open our windows in the hot weather to air the rooms, particularly the bedrooms, summer breezes provide the ideal medium for dispersing essential oils into the room. Simply sprinkle a few drops of the oil onto the curtain and this will volatilize into the air and, therefore, leave no marks. I have pretty muslin curtains which I pull across for this purpose. Use calming oils for sleep time, such as lavender, and refreshing oils like peppermint or spearmint during the day. Different aromas can be utilized in each room. For the kitchen, herbal smells are delicious and a long, weighted muslin curtain across the door will keep flies out and provide the backdrop for the oils all summer. Anything can act as a weight but big glass beads look pretty as do small pebbles. If suspended on a wire the curtain is easily pulled back out of the way when necessary. When washing bedding, add a few drops of essential oil to the rinsing water. For vacuuming, a cotton wool ball carrying one or two drops of essential oil is excellent for fragrance and as all essential oils are antiseptic, it provides antibacterial properties too. Place the scented cotton wool on the floor and vacuum it up. From the above you can see there is no need for special fans or synthetic, expensive room perfumes, some of which need dusting!

Simple Home-made Summer Products.

As the above poem mentions, bees play an important part of summer and none more so than their wonderful products of honey and bee's wax. At times, such as in the heat of sunny days, our skin requires that extra bit of nourishment and honey can provide just that. Honey blends well with products such as cream, (which sometimes contains bee's wax), or lotion, and can absorb the essential oils. It seems fitting then that summer products should not only contain essential oils from summer flowers but also honey from the bee.

Midsummer Hand Cream

• 50mls of plain hand cream
• 5mls of set honey
• 15 drops of blossom essential oil, i.e. chamomile or lavender.

Blend well and use after washing the hands.

Midsummer Foot Cream

• Ingredients are exactly as above but use essential oil of peppermint (Mentha piperita), or spearmint (Mentha spicata) instead of lavender or chamomile.

Use after bath or first thing in the morning. When the cream is mixed with lavender and honey it is superb for fungal infections, such as athlete's foot, (Tinea pedis), because lavender is anti-fungal and honey is antiseptic and anti-inflammatory.

Midsummer Bath Milk

With the first signs of summer, we all tend to rush out and seize a sunshine moment, especially in Britain where we do not get very much sun. As a result, some with fair skin become slightly sunburned. My midsummer bath milk recipe with soothe away those burns.

• 1 pint of fresh milk
• 1 tablespoon of honey
• 1 tablespoon of ground oatmeal
• 5 drops of chamomile essential oil
Mix all the ingredients together and add it to a warm, (not hot), bath.

I hope that these ideas and products will make your June a joy.


McVicar J. Jekka's Complete Herb Book. Kyle Cathie Limited. London. ISBN 1-85626-349-5. 1994.
Mojay G. Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit. Gaia Books Limited. London. ISBN 1-85675-072-8.


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About Barbara Payne

Barbara Payne taught clinical aromatherapy in various hospitals in the North of England, for School of Health, University of Hull, and was principal of an IFA and IFPA accredited college of clinical aromatherapy, for many years. She served as an inspector and examiner and was Chair of Education for the ISPA, (now IFPA). Barbara had regular interviews with BBC radio and appeared on national television occasionally and lectured annually for the RHS. Having contributed to Positive Health over many years, Barbara has now decided to retire from her PH Expert Regular Column after Issue 154 in Jan 2009. She can be reached on Tel: 01482 835358;


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