Cistus Organic Spain

Essential oil

Cistus ladaniferus var. beta maculata


General data

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Product details

Fragrance side

Cistus is a traditional tool in perfumery, often used in chypre compositions and leather accords. Its amber, woody, frankincenselike notes help create lasting intensity in a fragrance.

Healing, promotes relaxation. Used following a traumatic or painful event to soothe and warm the body and soul.

*These aromatherapeutic properties are excerpted from specific works and are provided for information purposes only. They are not, under any circumstances, to be considered sufficient as a basis for any health claim or diagnosis for purposes of therapeutic application.

Cistus ladaniferus var. beta maculatus is the only species of cistus to be used in perfumery. Present all around the Mediterranean, cistus is particularly abundant in Andalusia where the arid climate is favourable to its development. It flowers from April to June in the form of large white flowers with ephemeral purple macules. At the end of flowering, between May and June, new branches appear. They will then produce a gum, called labdanum, whose intoxicating smell fills the air of the hills.
Until the beginning of the 20th century, the gum was harvested directly from the fields by letting goats pass through. Their fleece would fill with gum as soon as they walked by the shrubs. In the 20th century, gum was harvested by whipping the branches with rakes of leather strips called Ladanisterion. The strips were then scraped with a knife to collect the gum. Today, the cistus branches are harvested by hand with sickles.

Manual cutting of the cistus branches begins in July, when they are gummed. Only the shoots of the year are harvested. Once cut, the twigs are gathered into 25 kg bundles and taken to the factory for processing.
For a good yield, good weather conditions are essential: if it rains too much during the harvest season, the plant’s resin will be “washed” and if it does not rain and the air is too dry, the rockrose will suffer from hydric stress, lose part of its leaves and produce less resin.

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