It’s A Lavender Season! Lavender Association of Colorado
The cultivar of the Month
June 2020 Cultivar of the Month
Lavandula angustifolia ‘Hidcote Pink’
Hidcote Pink is another versatile lavender grown in Colorado. It is an excellent culinary variety. It produces an exceptionally sweet oil that several growers use in conjunction with other lavender essential oils to make unique blends. Planted with purple lavenders, the pink flowers make the purple flowers “pop” in the landscape.
Hidcote Pink is not really good for crafting as in drying it loses its pink color and dries to a brown.
Hidcote Pink plants are 30-40″ tall. Stems are in the 6-10″ range. Spacing the plants 36″ apart should allow them to remain separate over the years.
Hidcote Pink was developed by Major Lawrence Johnston in Gloucester, England, and became available around 1958. It is hardy in zones 5-9. It blooms once in the spring.
Dilution The Key To Using Essential Oils Safely
We are often asked, “How can I use a lavender essential oil on my skin?” We recommend that people not use an undiluted lavender essential oil on their skin. Some people may develop an allergic response to undiluted essential oil or may develop a tolerance to it if used over time.
Instead, we encourage people to make a product with their lavender essential oil that can be used on their skin. How much lavender essential oil you put in your product will depend on what the product is going to be used for and with whom the product will be used. The following information is from the Aromahead Institute (www.aromahead.com). The Aromahead Institute offers on-line classes and information on how to safely and effectively use a wide variety of essential oils. We appreciate their willingness to allow us to share the following information with our readers.
In order to make essential oil products, you must understand the concept of dilution. Generally, if you are going to use essential oils on your skin, it’s best to dilute them in a carrier. Commonly used carriers are jojoba wax or unscented lotion.
Because essential oils are very concentrated, you may need to use fewer drops than you think. Also, some essential oils can irritate the skin when used undiluted. Lavender essential oil is one of the more benign essential oils but it is still wise to be careful.
Generally, dilutions of 1%, 2% or 3% are commonly used.
A dilution of 1% is used for children between the ages of 5-12 years old, the elderly who are frail or those using medications, pregnant women, and people with long-term illnesses or immune system disorders. A 1% dilution is also a good place to start with individuals who are generally sensitive to fragrances, chemicals, or other environmental pollutants.
Skincare, natural perfumes, massage oils, and blends that are used every day generally have a 2% dilution.
When creating a blend to address a specific, acute health concern such as pain relief or for getting through a cold or flu, a 3% dilution may be used
To get a 1% dilution, add 5 to 6 drops of oil for every one ounce (30 ml) of the carrier. To get a 2% dilution, add 10-12 drops of oil per ounce and for a 3% dilution, add 15-18 drops of oil per ounce of carrier.
Keep in mind that every cultivar of lavender produces a different essential oil. All of the lavender oils have the same 200+ chemical compounds in them but those compounds are in different ratios.
The main chemical components of lavender oil are a-pinene, limonene, 1,8-cineole, cis-ocimene, trans-ocimene, 3-octanone, camphor, linalool, linalyl acetate, caryophyllene, terpinen-4-ol and lavendulyl acetate.
Linalool and linalyl acetate are the two compounds in lavender essential oil most associated with promoting relaxation so an essential oil with a higher ratio of these two compounds would tend to promote relaxation more than other lavender essential oils with a lower ratio.
The chemical composition of a certain essential oil is often determined through the use of a gas chromatograph
Knowing what ratios of compounds in your essential oils may help you decide which oil to use or you can always just fall back on the “It smells good to me” reason for using a certain oil in your product. Some aromatherapists would argue that you will be drawn to the aroma of the essential oil that best meets your body’s needs.
If you are going to be using a lot of essential oils and blending those oils for certain desired effects it would probably be wise to take a class from an experienced essential oil practitioner so that you are using your oils safely and effectively.
This Month’s Recipe Provided by:
Trudy Perry Of Heritage Lavender in Berthoud Colorado
cherry lavender muffins
Blend together in a large bowl:
2 Cups Flour
1/2 Cup Sugar
3 Teaspoons Baking Powder
1 Teaspoon Salt
1 Cup Chopped Pie Cherries
1 Teaspoon Finely Ground Culinary Lavender
In a large glass bowl, beat 1 Cup of Milk, 1/4 Cup Oil, 1 Egg, 1 Teaspoon Almond Flavoring.
Slowly blend into dry ingredients and stir well.
Grease muffin tins before adding batter. Sprinkle with Lavender.
Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Serve with honey and butter. Delicious with a cup of tea.
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