PETRICHOR – the smell after rain

Petrichor. The smell after rain…..I love that smell don’t you?

I have memories of that smell right back from my childhood and was always fascinated by this pungent yet sweet aroma that would fill the air once it rained after a long hot spell. I have been thinking that this early recollection maybe part of the reason that started my lifelong fascination with aromas?

It was only fairly recently however that I discovered that this ‘smell’ had a name.

So where does the name Petrichor come from?

It is a combination of two words. The Greek word petros, for stone, and ichor which means the ‘fluid that flows in the veins of the Greek Gods of Mythology’ (another passion of mine!) It was first used in 1964 by researchers Isabell J Bear, an Australian chemist, and her colleague, Richard G Thomas, an Australian mineralogist, and biochemist.

The fragrance is a combination of some fifty or so aromatic chemicals stored in the dried-out plants that are dormant in the earth, paving stones, pathways etc. The rain releases the aroma into the air ready for us to inhale! Aaaah!

The smells that we like and associate with have always fascinated me, my favourite aroma may not be yours…. Smells are so intrinsically linked to memory. Something from our childhood or the place we first lived; a piece of clothing, someone baking, plants in your garden, it could be anything and instantly it will transport you to that time. What a truly magnificent thing!

So, next week is Aromatherapy Awareness Week. I am, at present, unable to offer hands on treatments, but I am using my essential oils most days. So, look out for my blends next week, I will be posting one every day.

 Monday – Motivation

Tuesday – Sleep better

Wednesday – Uplifting

Thursday – Contemplation

Friday – Balance

Any queries please don’t hesitate to get in touch!

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