Angelica

Thought to have originated in Syria, angelica was one of the few aromatics exported to the Orient. The oil was a common flavoring and apothecary drug, and magical powers were attributed to it as the “root of the Holy Ghost.” The way angelica hovers over the herb garden, it’s no wonder! It offers little fragrance until you bite into a seed or snap a root. It still flavors Cointreau liqueur.

Family: Apiaceae (Umbelliferae)

Extraction: Distilled from root or seed. Absolute. The root oil is stronger and slightly more expensive, and it smells earthy/herbal; the seed oil is spicy/peppery.

Medicinal Action: Angelica regulates menstruation, is a digestive tonic and stops coughing.

Emotional Attribute: The fragrance relieves depression (especially nerve-related) and provides a new outlook on problems.

Considerations: Use angelica very carefully: it can overstimulate the nervous system, and the root oil contains photosensitizing bergaptene.

Kathi Keville Written by Kathi Keville

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