14 hours ago
Sunday afternoon, dividing Vetiver with @_younggrandmother & @thewildherbalistnw
This plant, with its deep-reaching roots, was bound by one pot for 3 years. We knew it wasn’t the best option for this wild grass but, with a promise to replant it back into the earth one day, we needed it for research.
Its strong, fibrous & fast-growing roots can penetrate & bind soil to a depth of over 9 ft, making it effective at reducing erosion & stabilizing hillsides & slopes. But we’re posting on plant & aromatic medicine & not land management.
The first thing to clear up, in our research, was confusion over its botanical name. We found references to both, Vetiveria zizinoides & Chrysopogon zizinoides. Turns out, in 1999, plant taxonomists, J. F. Veldkamp determined there was no significant difference between the genera Chrysopogon & Vetiveria &, since Chrysopogon was used first, Veldkamp renamed all the Vetiveria grasses to Chrysopogon. Lest we remain confused.
Even though we gently coaxed the roots apart, there were many that separated from the plant - unfortunate circumstances for the roots but we couldn’t waste them - we were excited to rinse off the dirt to discover the rich, warm & smokey fragrance we knew as Vetiver. At first, they mostly smelled like dirt but within a few hours, the roots began to release their exotic & familiar scent. More experimentation will follow with these precious spoils... We read that a syrupy extraction is used as a flavoring agent for sweets, beverages, & sherbets in Indonesia & other parts of the world. We might try this, too.
Vetiver personality: Masculine, in nature, but can bring perfect balance between yin & yang energies. Is wise in spirit &, when turned to for advice, will be blunt & strait forward. Is ruled by the planet Saturn & teaches how to thrive in adversity. Associated with the astrological sign of Capricorn.