Botanical Name: Nepeta cataria
Method of Extraction: Steam Distilled
Characteristics: Catnip Herb, Nepeta cataria – is a flowering herb that stands between two and three feet tall. It is attractive and during full bloom attracts many native bees and small butterflies. As the blooms go to seed even gold finches enjoy it. It is a grossly underappreciated addition to garden and wild landscape artistry. The plant is resistant to insect maladies and disease and therefore easily wild crafter. It is easily suited to organic farming.
The steam distilled oil is a mobile liquid of pale to yellow, and even brown color with age. It is not a particularly pleasant aroma but on the scent strip it develops well into lovely earthy tones. It is often described as harsh and grassy herbal.
The two primary uses of Catnip essential oil are to attract cats and repel insects. There is empirical evidence to support both accounts.
Frankly there are not many references to catnip in western aroma therapy. Popular aroma therapy experts seem to overlook it in both research and daily operations,
Although catnip is easy to grow, good distillations are challenging because the density of the oil is too similar to water. The main constituent, nepetalactone, is slightly heavier than water. At the same time many of the other constituents have such similar density they tend to suspend in water, neither sinking nor floating. EOQA has done dozens of laboratory distillations, often with frustrating results. There are very few producers of catnip oil. At one time there was only one family producing all the catnip oil on the market. EOQA laments that this is sadly underutilized in every area including perfume. Occasionally there are animalic and rare facets to this oil.
The herb alone has been used since Roman times. It can be used for a sedative property. Catnip tea is used for stomach issues. The herb is used to treat fevers, skin issues and sore throats. Famous American writers like Irving, Hawthorne and Stowe make references to Catnip. Rodale’s 21st Century Herbal lists Catnip as one of “nature’s most powerful plants.”
Please Note: The information on EOQA.com is only provided for educational purposes, and further research should be done on each essential oil to be assured of its proper usage for each individual. Aromatherapy is not meant to be a replacement for care under a qualified health professional, but should be considered a complimentary form of healthcare.
1 oz, 4 oz, 1 lb, 1 kg