Common Name: Patchouli
Latin Binomial: Pogostemom cablin
Family: Labiatae or Lamiaceae
Other Common Names: Patchouly oil
Production Method: steam-distilled
Countries of Origin: India
Description of Oil: dark orange or brownish in color, viscous, rich, sweet, herbaceous, spicy, woody and balsamic odor.
Description of Plant: tropical perennial shrub, large green leaves and small white-purple flowers.
History, Folklore and Myth: Dried patchouli leaves were placed amongst amongst the folds of Indian cashmere, linens and garments to repel moths and small insects. Arabs used it to perfume carpets and the Chinese produced a perfumed ink for use on scrolls. In the 1960’s patchouli became a signature scent often used to mask the tarry odor of marijuana.
Properties and Uses: antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, aphrodisiac, astringent, deodorant, fungicide, insecticide, sedative
Precautions and Contraindications: non-toxic, non-irritating, and non-sensitising.
Other Interesting Information: The leaves must be dried and fermented before the oil is extracted. In Chinese medicine patchouli is used to treat colds, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.