Gifts from the garden make wonderful gestures because they’re personal and unique. If you’re searching for the perfect present for a flower lover, consider making potpourri with your own dried flowers.
Choose potpourri materials that will be absorbent or porous when dried. You want them to slowly release the fragrance oils into the air over time. Dried flowers are often utilized for this purpose, as their delicate leaves and petals hold just the right amount of essential oils.
Dried seeds and pine cones are a common addition to potpourri. You can collect items from your garden for use in this project. Rinse pine cones before using, as they can be slightly sticky from sap. If you’re feeling exotic, check your local craft store for lotus pods and other types of unusual-looking seed pods.
Dried fruits are also a fun choice for adding to potpourri. Thinly slice red apples or your favorite citrus fruit. Arrange the slices in a single layer on lined baking sheets. Bake at 250 degrees for several hours, until the slices are totally dry and translucent. The slices will begin to turn a light golden brown. The fruit will add visual interest to your potpourri, and is excellent at dispersing fragrance.
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Essential oils can be purchased at craft stores, health food stores, and many online retailers.
Choose at least 3-5 complementary fragrance oils. You don’t need to use only floral notes for your potpourri. Don’t be afraid to mix food notes (like vanilla) with florals for a more complex finished scent. Choose an unexpected note to make the scent more interesting. For example, pink or black peppercorn oil pairs well with floral notes and adds a subtle hint of spice.
If you wish, you can coordinate your fragrance oil to match your dried flowers. A popular choice is roses, using the dried petals as well as dried buds and rose hips. There are several types of rose essential oils, each offering a different scent. If you prefer a classic, sweet rose fragrance, look for oils that are labeled “old-fashioned rose”.
Rose potpourri would be a lovely present for a loved one’s birthday. If you’re looking for a special Mother’s Day or Easter gift, use dried violets or violas from your spring garden. The violet fragrance has been beloved for hundreds of years and will make a excellent top note in your potpourri.
When giving the gift of potpourri, include a small dropper bottle of the mixed essential oils that you have used. A few drops of the oil can be used to refresh the fragrance of the potpourri throughout the year.
There are hundreds of combinations of dried flowers and essential oils that will make beautiful and fragrant potpourri. Let your harvest and your imagination guide you, and the final result will be a treasured gift from your garden.