Friday, February 10, 2012

Winter Distillation - White Cedar Leaf

My beautiful copper still arrived yesterday and within minutes I was sterilizing mason jars and itching to start my first distillation. Next I needed some plant matter to work with. It being February in the North Country my options are limited yet there is 1 readily available plant I have always wanted to capture the scent of.

These are some beautiful White Cedar trees living in a nearby park. I have always admired these trees so that is where I headed. It was quite the icy trek & desolate too. Nobody in the park but distillers today :) I harvested from this mother tree here and the 2 babies behind her, leaving a gift for each tree in gratitude. Thanks Trees!

Here is my Duran Duran fan bag filled with white cedar leaf, the scent was not strong at all until .....

WOW how quickly a strong scent of cedar leaf filled my house! Mr. ADKaromatherapy has a bad head cold & was still struck by how overpowering the smell was. So fresh & green, a true treat in winter. I got about 150 ML of strong hydrosol with lovely droplets of cedar leaf oil floating happily on top. I have plenty of cedar leaf left to see how the yield changes once my plant matter dries.

Thus begins my adventures in distilling, it was so easy, inexpensive & rewarding. It took me about an hour total, and this project only cost me less than $1, for the ice. For anyone interested I got this still from Elfin Herb Farm in California. The only question remains, ~ what shall I brew up this weekend????

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