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Scents of the Earth

episode  nr. 5 : Rose

Welcome to Scents of the Earth! This month, we're diving into the world of roses, the Rosa Damascena in particular. It grew to be a personal favorite of mine, not just for its captivating fragrance, but also for its nourishing connection to love. 

Rose, in its essence, invites the grieving soul to find beauty amidst turbulent times. To me, it is like a warm hug that I can give myself and I like to dab a little of the pure essence behind my ears and onto my sternum whenever I am stressed or worried, or just- because I am in the mood for something beautiful.

The rose has long been symbolized with love and empathy and amongst all the botanical wonders, the rose is believed to emanate the highest vibration.

 

This imbues it with remarkable properties, opening our hearts to compassion, forgiveness, and love.  This specific rose from Kazanlak, Bulgaria is my fave and I love to add it to my perfumes for a soothing, honeyed and quintessential rosy scent. 

So sit back and relax while you enjoy this month's scent of the earth.

Hello plant friends,

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With love,

Merle 

Rosa DamascenaScents of the Earth
00:00 / 20:51

“In the morning, or at daybreak, pluck a rose petal and place it on your eyes. It draws out the humor and makes them clear."
- Hildegard von Bingen

In your box this month:

Rosa Damascena absolute, Rosa Damascena hydrolate/Rose water and rose buds. The rose buds can be used in a tisane by adding water just off the boil.

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Corresponding images, books and video's 

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In Walahfrid Strabo's poem from the ninth century, Hortulus, he illustrates the rose's many virtues:

Far and away the best of all in power and fragrance,
It well deserves its name "the Flower of Flowers."
It colors the oil which bears its name. No man can say,
No man remember, how many uses there are
For Oil of Roses as a cure for mankind's ailments…
Photo's by: Imdad Barbhuyen
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The Rose has been used in countless perfumes over the ages. Diptyque has L'eau Rose, Portrait of a lady by Serge Lutens is one of the biggest sillaged perfumes I have smelled (and it sticks to walls and in elevators), Enfleurage must have one of my favourite natural Rose perfumes and it is called 'Rose', which is barely a perfume since it just contains 4 different types of Roses and pink peppercorns and not much else, but it is just divine. And Attract of course! 

It took me a little while to get beyond the idea of the rose in perfume and it's obvious classical image. Maybe it takes a certain age to appreciative of its beauty. Fact is, I grew very fond of this plant and it's scent and I am so glad to have found my two direct suppliers in Bulgaria's Rose valley during a trip I made two years ago. To have seen the plant growing in its natural habitat and the reverence the people of Kazanlak have towards the flower was a magical experience. It helped nourish the strong connection I have with the Rose and I feel honored that Lingua Planta can partake in this ancient tradition or working with this beautiful flower.

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Enio Bonchev

The oldest and only UNESCO protected distillery in Bulgaria where we get our Rose absolute. I love to work with them because the special attention they have for sustainable and social practices. The world of perfuming materials can be mystified and wholesalers usually don't share information on which destilleries and farms they work with. It was a happy discovery that when I visited Enio Bonchev that unknowinlgy I worked with their Rose since almost the beginning of Lingua Planta.

Bulgaria’s Rose Valley­ stretches for about 87 miles across a narrow interval between the Balkan mountain range, dressing up in pink every May and June. We joined the harvest on a very early morning in June to gather the flowers when they are most fragrant. 

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This beautiful lady was harvesting the Rosa Alba in the fields of Silvia. 

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Traditional bridal costume of Bulgaria.

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Silvia - Rose Overdose

Dearest Silvia provides us with the Rose Water in your box that you can use directly on the face as a little ritual for self-love. Scroll down for extra info.

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Rose water ritual

Spray a small amount of rose water into your palm or a fine mist directly onto your face.

Close your eyes, take a deep breath and lightly pat the Rose Water into your skin with your fingertips onto your cheeks, forehead and chin.

Feel the coolness soothe and hydrate your skin. Let the subtle scent transport you to a place of calm within a field of roses.

Inhale deeply, savoring the subtle floral aroma. Embrace the enchanting essence of rosewater, connecting with nature's beauty.

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The constituents of Rosa Damascena.

As all natural materials, Rose is made up of many different kinds of molecules. Phenyl Ethyl is a sweet, honeyed floral note, Geraniol is floral and leans towards citrussy. It plays an important role in the diffusiveness of the scent. Citronellol is quite citrussy. Eugenol is present in clove and has that warm spiced scent that brings warmth to the scent of the Rose.

Upon ordering the Rose absolute I got this laboratory test result that shows some of the constituents and quality control and I was so delighting to see that it was pink.

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The Roses of Heliogabalus is an 1888 painting by the Anglo-Dutch artist Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema depicting the young Roman emperor Elagabalus (203–222 AD) hosting a banquet.

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Suggested reads:

 

Nosedive by Harold McGee

Nez + LMR's Damask Rose in Perfumery

Perfume and Flavor Materials of Natural Origin, Steffen Arctander, 1960, pp. 552-4.Listening to Scent – An Olfactory Journey with Aromatic Plants and Their Extracts, Jennifer Peace Rhind, 2016, p. 100.Aromatherapeutic Blending – Essential Oils in Synergy, Jennifer Peace Rhind, 2016, pp. 91, 138, 158."Rose," The Perfume Society, https://perfumesociety.org/ingredients-post/rose/“Stop and Smell the Roses,” Ayala Moriel in Smellyblog, February 2010, http://ayalasmellyblog.blogspot.com/2010/02/stop-and-smell-roses.html“CaFleureBon Roses in Perfumery,” Elise Pearlstine in CaFleureBon, February 2012, http://www.cafleurebon.com/cafleurebon-roses-in-perfumery-the-name-of-the-rose-draw/“Rose,” by Mat Yudov at Fragrantica, https://www.fragrantica.com/notes/Rose-105.html (bottom of page)

Golden rose (second quarter of the 14th century), Minucchio Da Siena. © RMN-Grand Palais (musée de Cluny – musée national du Moyen-Âge/Jean-Gilles Berizzi

Rosa Damascena is to be found in the form of the Rose absolute that you can find in abundance in Attract and the Rose water is the pure, dewy Rosa Damascena hydrolate. 

Find Rose in our products?
 

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Reach out or say hi

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We would love to personally connect with you, if you have any questions or are in need for some help, don't hesitate to reach out.

info@merlebergers.nl

or DM @linguaplanta

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