Narcissus-"Des Plaines"(Narcissus poeticus) Absolute/France

Images of Narcssis poeticus

Narcissus "Des Plaines" Absolute(Narcissus poeticus)/France
There are two types of Narcissus absolute. The first is Des Plains which comes from the cultivated Narcissus and the second is "Des Montagnes" which is from wild harvested Narcissus. The odor of the cultivated and the wild harvested absolutes are very different. I have only done the olfactory evaluation of the cultivated Narcissus absolute.
The Des Plaines Narcissus absolute is a dark amber colored viscous liquid has a mild, rich, sweet, floral bouquet with a delicate green herbaceous, honeyed-balsamic undertone with good tenacity. Deeper into the dry out a lovely sweet hay-like, fruity note nestles amidst the other notes. Also as the initial notes disperse into the air the absolute begins to develop a warm, soft but quiet radiance. In the beginning the aroma seems to stay close to its core notes but with time extends deeper into the environment

Blends well with beeswax absolute; bakul attar; broom abs; boronia absolute; cabreuva eo; cassie absolute; clove bud absolute; champa, golden abs; elderflower abs; hay absolute; helichrysum abs and eo; henna flower attar; honey absolute; frangipani absolute jonquil abs; kadam attar; mimosa abs; neroli eo night queen abs; orange flower absolute; osmanthus absolute parijata attar; rosa bourbonia abs; rose de mai absolute; saffron co2 and abs; sandalwood eo, co2 and abs; tuberose absolute and attar; vanilla abs; violet leaf absolute; ylang absolute

In perfumery can be used in literary perfumes; mythological perfumes; high class florals

Narcissus in Literature
Never as long as they lived would the children forget the scene before them! The budding trees, the singing of the birds, and the sweet scents that came to them were only part of the great surprise that awaited them. Golden sheets of daffodil and white narcissus bordered the dark evergreen shrubberies; edging the old lawn were clumps of violets and primroses. Hyacinths, tulips, and other bulbs were making the flower beds a mass of bright colour, and the lilac and laburnum trees seemed overweighted with their bloom.
Bulbs and Blossoms, by Amy Le Feuvre


Narcissus, I like to watch you grow
When snow is shining
Beyond the crystal glass.
A coat of snow covers the hills far.
The sun is setting;
And you stretch out flowers of palest white
In the pink of the sun.
Poems By a Little Girl, by Hilda Conkling

Siberia is no doubt as a rule somewhat severe and inhospitable, but M. Patrin mentions with enthusiasm how one day descending from the frozen summits of the Altai, he came suddenly on a view of the plain of the[Pg 29] Obi—the most beautiful spectacle, he says, which he had ever witnessed. Behind him were barren rocks and the snows of winter, in front a great plain, not indeed entirely green, or green only in places, and for the rest covered by three flowers, the purple Siberian Iris, the golden Hemerocallis, and the silvery Narcissus—green, purple, gold, and white, as far as the eye could reach.
The Beauties of Nature, by Sir John Lubbock

"Go out, in the spring time, among the meadows that slope from the shores of the Swiss lakes to the roots of their lower mountains. There, mingled with the taller gentians and the white narcissus, the grass grows deep and free, and as you follow the winding mountain paths, beneath arching boughs all veiled and dim with blossom,—paths, that for ever droop and rise over the green banks and mounds sweeping down in scented undulation, steep to the blue water, studded here and there with new mown heaps, filling all the air with fainter sweetness,—look up towards the higher hills, where the waves of everlasting green roll silently into their long inlets among the shadows of the pines; and we may, perhaps, at last know the meaning of those quiet words of the 147th Psalm, 'He maketh the grass to grow upon the mountains.'"
The Beauties of Nature, by Sir John Lubbock

Links to Narcissus poeticus
The book of flowers By Sarah Josepha Buell Hale
Poems of the inner life By Calla L. Harcourt
The Gardens of Emily Dickinson By Louise Carter
The new perfume handbook By Nigel Groom
Wikipedia article on Narcissus
Paghats Garden-Narcissus

Mitti(Baked Earth) Attar/India

Images for Mitti Attar
Article on Mitti Attar

"The real significance of the mitti attar was only revealed to me though when we were in Rajasthan as it had been many years since I was in India during the monsoon season. Seeing the sun baked earth upturned and waiting to receive the rains and feeling the longing of the people for the return of the monsoon connected me once again to the"reason" behind the existence of the attar. This odor was for the people a reminder of one of the most sacred and important events of their lives. Ramakant also explained to me that from the scientific level when the earth becomes depleted of moisture the soil organisms, numbering 10 million to the teaspoon, become inactive but as soon as the soil receives the rain they are activated again and this activity is most likely the cause for the sublime aroma that is dear to those who love the earth. This exquisite rich, deep, mysterious smell created by the activity of the micro-organisms, invisibly charges the air with its positive influence and one can easily imagine that the earth is in turn thanking the clouds and rain for showering their cooling draughts so that life can return to the land and all nature can rejoice."
Mitti Attar/White Lotus Aromatics

Olfactory Properties of Mitti(baked earth) Attar

The attar of Mitti displays a fine, dry, earthy, punguent aroma that has a delicate, sweet, rooty-spicy undertone with good tenacity.

Mitti Attar is such a special and unique aroma that I would hesitate to add anything to it but certainly for the adventurous perfumer one could add trace amounts of agarwood/oud eo, attar and co2; allspice eo, co2 and abs; angelica root eo, co2 and abs; carrot seed eo, co2 and abs; cedarwood, western red heartwood eo; cedarwood, virginia eo; cinnamon bark co2, eo and abs; cypress eo and abs; elecampange eo and abs; galangal eo; oakmoss abs; patchouli eo, co2 and abs pepper, pink eo and co2; kewda attar and ruh; siamwood eo; turmeric eo and co2; vetiver eo, co2 and abs;

In perfume blending could be used in sacred perfumes, chypres, fougeres, monsoon blends, oriental bases, amber notes, precious woods blends, ayurvedic perfumes

Scent of the Earth in Literature

"You speak like the very spirit of earth, imbued with a scent of freshly turned soil," exclaimed my friend.
The Hall of Fantasy, by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Then rain, and after, moonshine cold and fair,
And scent of earth, sweet with the evening rain,
And slow soft speech beneath the rain-washed trees,
Ah, that such things should never come again!
All Round the Year, by
Edith Nesbit and Saretta Nesbit

April! April! April!
With a mist of green on the trees--
And a scent of the warm brown broken earth
On every wandering breeze;
What, though thou be changeful,
Though thy gold turns to grey again,
There's a robin out yonder singing,
Singing in the rain.
The Miracle and Other Poems, by Virna Sheard

The coyote is your true water-witch, one who snuffs and paws, snuffs and
paws again at the smallest spot of moisture-scented earth until he has
freed the blind water from the soil. Many water-holes are no more than
this detected by the lean hobo of the hills in localities where not even
an Indian would look for it.
The Land of Little Rain, by Mary Austin

Meanwhile, toward the west, a vast marine picture, like a panorama on wheels, was accompanying us all the way. Sometimes at our feet, beneath the seamy fissures of a hillside, or far removed by sweep of meadow, lay the fluctuant mass we call the sea. It was all a glassy yellow surface now; into the liquid mirror the polychrome sails sent down long lines of color. The sun had sunk beyond the Havre hills, but the flame of his mantle still swept the sky. And into this twilight there crept up from the earth a subtle, delicious scent and smell—the smell and perfume of spring—of the ardent, vigorous, unspent Normandy spring.
In and Out of Three Normady Inns by Anna Bowman Dodd

"For it is clean dirt," she laughingly said, when Miss Dorothy playfully scolded her for it. "This kind of dirt is healthful, and it isn't going to hurt me if a few dusty twigs or a bit of dried grass or weeds should cling to my gown. You must remember, Sister Dorothy, there are different kinds of dirt. I haven't any respect for grease spots or for clothes soiled from wearing them too long. I don't like that kind of dirt, but to get close to dear old mother earth, and have a scent of her fresh soil once in a while is what I enjoy. It is delightful. I like nature too well to stand on ceremony with her."
Dickey Downy, by Virginia Sharpe Patterson

Above all there came to his nostrils the scent of summer, the smell of flowers mingled, and the odour of the woods, of cool shaded places, deep in the green depths, drawn forth by the sun's heat; and the scent of the good earth, lying as it were with arms stretched forth, and smiling lips, overpowered all. His fancies made him wander, as he had wandered long ago, from the fields into the wood, tracking a little path between the shining undergrowth of beech-trees; and the trickle of water dropping from the limestone rock sounded as a clear melody in the dream.
The Great God Pan, by Arthur Machen

Kadam(Anthocephalus cadamba) Attar/India wild harvest

Images of Kadam/Kadamba/Anthocephalus cadamba

olfactory properties of Kadam(Anthocephalus cadamba) Attar/India wild harvest

The sandalwood based attar of Kadam displays a wonderful rich, sweet, heavy, honeyed, powdery-floral bouquet which due to the presence of sandalwood(into which the flowers are distilled over a period of 10-15 days) maintains its aromatic profile in a consistent manner over many hours(24 hours later the
As with all sandalwood based attars, the overall bouquet has soft precious woods radiance subtly manifesting itself as an undertone , helping harmonize and exalt all the flowers rich beauty.
All true traditonal attars, in my opinion are perfect perfumes in themselves and can be enjoyed as such. They are a treasure to explore through all stages of their aromatic life, revealing quiet facets of beauty as one concentrates on the volatile molecules as they release into the air in a measured way(again due to the true fixative effect of sandalwood)
Kadam attar was once regularly distilled in North India but nowadays it is rarely done although we are doing our small part to keep this precious attar on the aromatic palette of one of our colleagues who is dedicated to this ancient art and craft.The high cost of legally traded sandalwood within India has resulted in a steep decline in the production of traditional attars and many of the delightful aromatic treasures that were once produced from Indian flowers are no longer produced.

One can of course use the attars in blending if one feels so inclined. One needs to proceed with great caution though as small additions of natural essences are all that is required to create the changes one desires. In general these absolutes, essential oils and co2 extracts can be added to kadam attar to create wonderful perfumes- araucaria eo; beeswax abs; boronia abs; broom abs; cabreuva eo; cananga eo; carrot seed, eo, co2 and abs; cedarwood eo and abs; champaca, golden abs; champaca, white co2; Cassie abs; hay abs; coriander eo, co2 and abs; frangipani abs; helichrysum eo and abs; honey/miel abs; jasmine absolutes(grandifloroum, sambac and auriculatum); karo karounde abs; magnolia lily co2 mimosa absolute; neroil eo; orange blossom abs; orris eo, co2 and abs; rose otto and abs(centifolia, bourbonia, and damascena); siamwood eo; tuberose abs; ylang abs

In perfumery can be used in garland perfumes; sacred perfumes, high class florals

Kadam/Kadamba Tree in Literature
It is evening. The rain is pouring in lance-like showers. Our lane is under knee-deep water. The tank has overflown into the garden, and the bushy tops of the Bael trees are seen standing out over the waters. Our whole being, on this delightful rainy evening, is radiating rapture like the Kadamba flower its fragrant spikes. The time for the arrival of our tutor is over by just a few minutes. Yet there is no certainty...! We are41 sitting on the verandah overlooking the lane[12] watching and watching with a piteous gaze. All of a sudden, with a great big thump, our hearts seem to fall in a swoon. The familiar black umbrella has turned the corner undefeated even by such weather! Could it not be somebody else? It certainly could not! In the wide wide world there might be found another, his equal in pertinacity, but never in this little lane of ours.
My Reminiscences, by Rabindranath Tagore

Near the unwalled city, the priest sat down before the pandit, Ratna
Ram, whose seat was under the kadamba tree by the temple of Maha Dev.
Ratna Ram was learned in the signs of different languages and could
write them with a reed, so that those who had knowledge could decipher
his writing, even after many days and at a great distance: Ratna Ram,
to whom the gods had given that greatest of all kinds of wisdom,
whereby he could hold secretly any knowledge and not speak of it till
the thing should be accomplished. (The pandit was well known to Skag
who studied Hindi before him for an hour or more, on certain days.)
Son of Power, by Will Levington Comfort and
Zamin Ki Dost

Ritûsamhâra is clearly a work of Kâlidâsa's immaturity. The youthful love-song in it does not reach the sublime reticence which is in Shakuntalâ and Kumâra-Sambhava. But the tune of these voluptuous outbreaks is set to the varied harmony of Nature's symphony. The moonbeams of the summer evening, resonant with the flow of fountains, acknowledge it as a part of its own melody. In its rhythm sways the Kadamba forest, glistening in the first cool rain of the season; and the south breezes, carrying the scent of the mango blossoms, temper it with their murmur.
Creative Unity, by Rabindranath Tagore
Close by on a mud-flat stood a large Kadamba tree in full flower. My
lord, the baby, looked at it with greedy eyes, and Raicharan knew his
meaning. Only a short time before he had made, out of these very
flower balls, a small go-cart; and the child had been so entirely happy
dragging it about with a string, that for the whole day Raicharan was
not made to put on the reins at all. He was promoted from a horse into a
The Hungry Stones And Other Stories, by
Rabindranath Tagore

In the middle of the sea of nectar,
In the isle of precious gems,
Which is surrounded by wish giving Kalpaga trees,
In the garden Kadamba trees,
In the house of the gem of thought,
On the all holy seat of the lap of the great God Shiva,
Sits she who is like a tide
In the sea of happiness of ultimate truth,
And is worshipped by only by few select holy men.
Adi Sankaracharya's
Soundarya Lahari
Translated bY P. R. Ramachander

After the rain a gentle breeze springs up
while the sky is overlaid with clouds;
one sees the horizon suddenly in a flash of lightning;
moon and stars and planets are asleep;
a heady scent is borne from kadambas wet with rain
and the sound of frogs spreads out in utter darkness.
How can the lonely lover spend these nights ?
Page 1
from Vidjäkara's "Treasury" TRANSLATED BY

As the temperatures had cooled down considerably Naveen suggested we visit a place which he knew had some Kadam trees. This is very important from our fragrance research viewpoint as Kadam flowers are greatly valued for the wonderful fragrance they impart to attars. Outside the city we came to a tiny village where we asked an elderly farmer if he knew how we could find the place where Naveen had heard their was Kadam trees. The farmer told us that he would be happy to guide us there himself so he got in the car and off we went on another fragrant adventure. After a few miles we left the tarred road and followed a dirt one until it ended in a small ravine at the gate of an ancient temple. Once again I felt we had entered a forgotten world where anything and everything was possible. The kind and gentle soul which had guided us to this serene spot told us that many centuries before a great sage had settled here and became absorbed in meditation. In India it is believed that nature blesses that place where meditation is being done and so, in this case, a grove of Kadam trees began to grow up around his hermitage. They became so thick that it created a canopy of foliage above the place where he was sitting. The flowers when in bloom gave off their delicious aroma from 3-6 AM the time considered most auspicious for spiritual practice. Many old Kadam trees still surrounded the temple and we wandered about in search of some that were in bloom. This is the season in which they flower but their full crop usually appears only when the monsoon rains begin. A beautiful grouping of old and gnarled trees surrounded a stone lined well and the elderly farmer told us that this was a sacred place where Sita use to do her daily ablutions when she and Rama stayed here on their way to Ayodhya from Sri Lanka. Their story is recounted in the Ramayana one of the most famous epics in India. As we walked up the ravine we found more and more Kadam trees but none seemed in bloom. We came upon a forest department nursery tucked neatly away in the ravine that served as a propagation station for neem and other trees that were known to do well in this location. Thousands of tiny saplings were growing there in the shade of mature neem and peepul trees. We asked the watchman if he knew of any Kadam trees in bloom and he directed us to spot to the side of the road upon which we had come. We were overjoyed to find several trees with both mature flowers and new buds emerging. At the time of our discovery a number of village children appeared on the scene. They were asked to collect some flowers from the higher reaches of the tree in a flash they were scrambling up the trunk and onto the limbs. Laughing and chattering merrily they nimbly collected flowers while I took pictures of them. They were delighted to render this service and we were delighted to see their absolute spontaneity, innocence and purity. Their eyes sparkled with joy and happiness and there voices were like the melodious chirping of birds. They collected a small bundle of flowers and returned to the ground with their treasure in hand. And what a treasure it was. The fragrance of Kadam is rich, mellow, and delicious.
Kadam Newsletter

Links to Kadam/Kadamba/Anthocephalus cadamba
Human Flower Project-Pom-Pom of the Monsoon
Kadam Flower Article
Kadamba Tree-Wikipedia Article
A dictionary of the economic products of India, Volume 1 By George Watt
Indian herbal remedies By C. P. Khare
Plant lore, legends, and lyrics By Richard Folkard