Essential Oils

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CANANGA

Cananga odorata

FAMILY Annonaceae

SYNONYMS C.odoratum var. macrophylla

GENERAL DESCRIPTION
A tall tropical tree, up to 30metres high, which flowers all year round. It bears large, fragrant, tender yellow flowers which are virtually identical to those of Ylang Ylang.

DISTRIBUTION
Native to tropical Asia: Java, Malaysia, the Philippines, the Moluccas.

OTHER SPECIES
Very closely related to the tree which produces Ylang Ylang oil, C.odorata var.genuina. Cananga is considered an inferior produce in perfumery work; being grown in different regions the oil has a different quality, heavier and less delicate than ylang ylang. However, cananga is truly a'complete' oil whereas ylang ylang is made into several distillates.

HERBAL/FOLK TRADITION
Used locally for infectious illnesses, for example malaria. The beautiful flowers are also used for decorative purposes at festivals.

ACTIONS
Antiseptic, antidepressant, aphrodisiac, hypotensive, nervine, sedative, tonic.

EXTRACTION
Essential oils by water distillation from the flowers.

CHARACTERISTICS
Greenish-yellow or orange viscous liquid with a sweet, floral balsamic tenacious scent. It blends well with calmaus, birch tar, copaiba balsam, labdanum, neroli, oakmoss, jasmine, guaiacwood and oriental type bases.

PRINCIPAL CONSTITUENTS
Caryophyllene, benzyl acetate, benzyl alcohol, farnesol, terpineol, borneol, geranyl acetate, safrol, linalol, limonrne,methyl salicylate and over 100 minor components.

SAFETY DATA
Non-toxic, non -irritant, possible sensitization especially in those with sensitive skin.

AROMATHERAPY/HOME USE

Skin care: Insect bites, fragrance, general skin care.

Nervous system: Anxiety, depression, nervous tension and stress-related complaints.

OTHER USES
Fragrant component in soaps, detergents, cosmetics and perfumes, especially men's fragrances. Limited use as a flavour ingredient in some food products, alcoholic and soft drinks.

Reference: The Encyclopedia of Essential oils: Julia Lawless

 

 

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