A member of the durable Sage organic family, clary sage is native to the north Mediterranean, farming both in the wild and cultivated.

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Distribution, background and usage

Classified as either a biennial or perennial herb, clary sage is one of the four essential oil producing plants belonging come the Salvia genus.

Its stems and also leaves are covered in fine hairs, with plentiful pale lavender, white or pink flowers. The tree can grow up come 120cm in height.


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Plants indigenous the Salvia types have a long legacy of use in medicine and cooking.

Salvia derives from the Latin word "salvere" an interpretation "to be conserved or healed", which shows the high regard these plants were hosted in. The Romans believed that sage granted immortality, a "herba sacra" and curative.

The native clary originates from the Latin "clarus" or "clear", i beg your pardon is reflect in its folk name of "clear eye" and in its function in dealing with eye conditions.


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In medieval times clary sage was recommended for intestinal complaints and colic and was a well-known tea in Britain before the importation of black tea indigenous China.

In the culinary ar the pipeline were dipped in batter and also fried to develop fritters that often accompanied meat dishes.

Clary wines were popular and said to have narcotic effects, the powdered seeds added to wine for their noticeable lust inducing properties.

Clary sage was also used together a hops instead of in beer impending in Britain. Beers infused with clary sage were considered to have actually increased intoxicating powers and also rather unfortunately cause severe headaches the following morning.


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The practice in Germany of utilizing clary in wine started in the center Ages. It was an initial employed together an adulterant, included to alcohol to make it resemble muscatel.

The widespread use of clary sage eventually led come its surname of "Muskateller Salbei" or "muscatel sage" in Germany.

The aromatic is still supplied today together a muscatel flavouring for liqueurs, wines and vermouths.

In aromatherapy, clary sage finds applications in female reproductive, respiratory, musculoskeletal and also nervous device conditions.


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Essential oil production

Clary sage necessary oil is acquired by vapor distillation of the flowering tops and also leaves, either in upright columns continuously or through batch in cell phone containers. The tree is robust and also thrives in stony, mountainous regions or in locations with warm Summers and also cold Winters.

Commercial production of clary sage aromatics can be discovered in the Shaanxi province of China, phibìc Carolina in the US, the Crimea, Russia, Moldova, Bulgaria and between the Vaucluse and Alpes de Haute Provence departments in north Provence, France. The season lasts from July come August. Clary sage plants were created in Provence at first after people War One by the Gattefosse family, taken into consideration to be one of the pioneers of contemporary day aromatherapy.


Clary sage has actually a life bike of 5 years maximum. In the very first year there is no harvesting, vital oil production occurs in the second year and also continues for as lengthy as possible.

The top quality of essential oil created varies depending upon its geographical origin and also the freshness of leaves used for distillation.

There space three key methods the clary sage distillation:

Green shredded - the tree is harvested, shredded and also distilled eco-friendly without drying. This produce a "vert broye" clary sage that has a subtle tart, eco-friendly aroma.

Pre-wilted - plants space cut and dried in the ar then shredded and also distilled.

Traditional - plants are cut and also dried in the field, shredded and distilled v the entirety stem. This gives the clary sage a sharp, brewed aesthetic.


Clary sage is additionally used to create a concrete and absolute which room widely supplied in the fragrance and also flavour industries. These very concentrated, dense aromatics are derived by solvent exploit of tree material. Clary sage concrete contains a high percentage of sclareol, one unusually big molecule not typically found in botanical aromatics, which own a gentle, ambergris-like aroma. This is provided as a starting point in creating derivatives through an ambery odour.

In perfumery, clary sage can be discovered in chypre and also fougere perfumes, oriental accords or amber bases.


Clary is a facility aromatic v over 250 different constituents. Major chemical constituents incorporate the ester linalyl acetate (up to 75%), which provides it fruity and floral characteristics and also the alcohol linalool (up to 25%), which imparts gentle floral and woody effects. These aromatic chemicals are likewise found in huge amounts in true lavender oil. "Vert broye" clary sage is richer in linalool. The alcohol sclareol is present at as much as 7%.


Aromatic profile

Clary sage acts as a middle note and fixative in a composition, used to provide body, fullness and warmth to a blend. The essential oil is versatile and also diffusive, with a distinctive scent.

It have the right to be described as sweet, herbal, soft, green, with aspects of lavender and wood, a heat tea or tobacco-like mid note, drying down to a warm, balsamic aroma.

It has actually a an extremely different odour profile compared to cooking sage i m sorry is more pungent and also camphoraceous.

The vital oil blends well with vetiver, lavender, sandalwood, cedarwood, juniper, cypress, pine, jasmine, rose, geranium, patchouli, frankincense, black color pepper, cardamom and also most citrus important oils.

Clary sage pure is much more persistent with solid woody and hay-like nuances and ambery aspects. It combine favourably v citrus, oakmoss or tobacco note in a fragrance.


Clary sage crucial oil is an ingredient discovered in the derekwadsworth.com Greek Island blend. Prefer sweet marjoram essential oil, it adds warmth and also a herbaceous human body to the blend but likewise infuses it v its very own distinctive touch and high spirited character.


Further reading

Clary Sage, The colonial Taste of Spring. Indiana publicly Media. North American homesteaders enjoyed clary sage fritters to mark the arrival of Spring.

Recipe for clary wine from clary sage flowers. Earthnotes.

Birrificio Montegioco "Rex Grue" Amber Ale Brewed through Clary Sage from Italy. K&L wine Merchants.

Sustainable method to make a prized fragrance ingredient. Scientific research Daily.

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two enzymes extracted from clary sage are applied to bacteria to recreate the molecule the is so prized in ambergris. In its herbal form, ambergris is a secretion that is at first produced by male sperm whales that is expelled right into the ocean. It at some point is reinvented by air and also sunlight right into a rare and also expensive substance that gets washed up to shore and is used to provide ambery base notes in perfumery.


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