Botanical Name: Cymbopogon Nardus L
Family Name: Poaceae (Gramineae)
Common Name: Citronella Oil
Part used: leaves (grass)
Specific Gravity: 0.880
Refractive Index: 1.465 to 1.475
Optical Rotation: -7.00 to +7.00
Odor : Lemony
Therapeutic properties: The oil has in it properties of an antiseptic, insecticide, deodorant, parasitic, tonic and a stimulant.
Oil properties: The oil is well recognized as a insect repellent. Further, as per the research done, the oil also has strong antifungal properties.
Extraction: The oil is extracted from grass/leaf part using seam distillation process.
Chemical composition: Blends well with most oils, but specifically well with Cedarwood, Geranium, Bergamot, Bitter Orange, Lemon, Lavender, Orange and Pine.
Blends Well With: Bergamot, Lemon, Orange, Lemon grass and even pine too
Uses: The oil is well used for therapeutic causes. Further, it is a good antiseptic, tonic, stimulant and insecticide. The oil is used in combination with Cedarwood for producing pleasant smelling natural insect repellent. Further, it is also used in soaps & candles.
Essential oil information: Also known by common name of Zeylanicum, the oil has well rounded lemon citrus scent and a subtle woody aroma. Here, the oil is steam distilled from the leaves of a resilient grass (Cymbopogon nardus) which is native to Sri Lanka and Java.
Countries where it’s found: The production of citronella is nearly 4000 tonnes all over the globe. The greatest producers of this are country china and Indonesia, who are nearly producing forty percent of the complete world’s supply. The other sixty percent is produced by Taiwan, India, Argentina, Ecuador, Honduras, Jamaica, South Africa, Mexico, Madagascar, Brazil, Honduras and Guatemala etc.
Harvesting Information: It can be grown in tropical and non tropical areas. It is harvested when its length become till three feet. It also needs moisture and sunshine in equal amount and cultivated inSandy loam soil well-heeled in organ which suits most for its cultivation. Once when it is sowed after that till four year it can be yielded.
History of the Plant: Much information is not available about the history of the citronella plant but in the beginning of this century Ceylon type oil was widely used but soon overpowered by java type of citronella. It has been reported that ancient civilizations have used this oil in menstrual troubles and intestinal parasites; it is good to be used as a stimulus and it there are strong evidences that this oil was also used in Chinese ancient medicines. In modern era pure natural oil is not used only synthetic form which is called java type is common.
Extraction Process: The lustrous green leaves of citronella plant are used for extraction of oil and for this distillation method is used. Hardy grass, when grown till one meter in height after that finely chopped fresh or dried hardy grass is used to extract the oil and steam distillation is used for this as used in extracting most of the similar oils.