Just when everything around here was blooming and smelling up the place, the monsoons came again and washed the garden away . . . and it's expected to rain more today. It's really put the brakes on the picking and plucking and distillation planned for the month, but I can live with that. We desperately need the water. I think this is the first time in at least five years that the Central Valley's gotten 100% of its normal rainfall.
Yesterday I distilled some French lavender. I got quite a lot of oil, a few mls, actually, and about four cups of lovely hydrosol. I won't be siphoning off the essential oil because there really isn't enough to do anything with, and because it smells so much better in the hydrosol. Again, as people circulated in and out of the house, I was fielding questions about the distillation unit -- someone called it a "machine". No moving parts on "the machine", just heat and burping, sputtering effluvia of aromatic gorgeousness.
Still waiting for the lemon blossoms to bloom. I run out to the farm every other day checking them, still, they're tightly closed, their heavy petals brushed with shades of violet, holding tight to the scent I want to steal. The old, antique lilac bushes on the farm bloomed for the first time in almost 20 years! Four solid arrows of lush purple blossoms bursting with heavenly scent. I was tempted to pick them, but decided against it as the garden needed the scent boost more than I did, neglected as it's been these past few decades. I'll post pictures of the back garden on the farm someday. There's also an orange tree in the back garden that hadn't had oranges in almost 10 years and mom pulled a dozen off it this past January, and now the tree is covered in white flowers and smells like bliss.
Mum's a green witch, for sure. Give her a stick, and she'll make it grow.