Honeysuckle and Sage

Nature's Aromatherapy: Honeysuckle
Nature’s Aromatherapy: Honeysuckle

I have not studied aromatherapy, but I raised my son on a farm surrounded by acres of fresh earth that produce profound and changing aromas throughout the year. Like those who do study aromatherapy, I believe that these scents can stimulate brain function to enhance psychological and physical wellbeing.

At this exact time of year, the honeysuckle is in bloom. It snakes around the cedar fences and climbs on the farm buildings. Its fragrance is my favorite and always promotes a profound sense of joy in me. I love it because honeysuckle’s presence heralds the very beginning of summer. The scent seems more special because the blooms stay fragrant only on the longest days of the year. At the very top of the list is that their smell is almost too good to be true. I would describe it as a unique blend of pine and rose.

I use a few essential oils in my practice—ones that I think promote a needed change of mood. Sometimes I crush mint from my garden to fill the room with it’s freshness. Often I place a dab of lavender on a patient’s temples when I am through with a treatment. For a few, I use the pure rose extract that is the flower of summer. It loves heat and sun and needs lots of water. In Chinese Medicine, summer is the season when the heart function predominates. I like to think that the smell of roses can support the healing of heart issues.

My use of essential oils is non-scientific, depending on experience-based intuition. However, my library is filled with books from the 1920’s on herbs, flowers, and their healing properties. They are a legacy from grandmother-in-law who had a large herb garden bordered with lavender and sage, the later of which some colleagues burn to ‘cleanse’ the air of treatment room.

I hope you get a chance to walk outdoors, close to the earth, at this very special time of year. It is a wonderful season for fragrances from the honeysuckle to the sage and many in between. Enjoy this stretch of long summer days.

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