Emily Dickinson’s Herbarium

Hello dearest natural beauties wherever you are! I recently found a beautiful article on the American poet Emily Dickinson. The article talks about her love of flowers and her craft of growing, collecting, pressing and recording them in books. Her ‘herbarium” is a 60 page collection of around 400 flowers from the Amherst region in Massachusetts. The original article from Maria Popova for  brainpickings.org can be found here.

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Page from Emily Dickinson’s herbarium (Houghton Library, Harvard University)

“Dickinson started studying botany at the age of nine and assisting her mother at the garden at twelve, but it wasn’t until she began attending Mount Holyoke in her late teens — around the time the only authenticated daguerrotype of her was taken — that she began approaching her botanical zeal with scientific rigor.”

brainpickings.org “Emily Dickinson’s Herbarium” by Maria popova

Emily Dickinson, daguerreotype, ca. 1847. (Amherst College Archives & Special Collections, gift of Millicent Todd Bingham, 1956)

Page from Emily Dickinson’s herbarium (Houghton Library, Harvard University)
First page of Emily Dickinson’s herbarium (Houghton Library, Harvard University)

The article also quotes another author, Judith Farr, in her book The Gardens of Emily Dickinson . Farr makes an important note about the first page of Dickinson’s herbarium:

On the very first page, the first flower pressed by the girl Emily, was the Jasminum or jasmine, the tropical flower that would come to mean passion to her as a woman. This “belle of Amherst,” … was profoundly attracted to the foreign and especially to the semitropical or tropical climes that she read about in Harper’s and the Atlantic Monthly-Santo Domingo, Brazil, Potosi, Zanzibar, Italy… Domesticating the jasmine in the cold climate of New England, writing sensuous lyrics about forbidden love in spare meters, Dickinson followed a paradoxical pattern that related poet to gardener in one adventurous pursuit. Just as her fondness for buttercups, clover, anemones, and gentians spoke of an attraction to the simple and commonplace, her taste for strange exotic blooms is that of one drawn to the unknown, the uncommon, the aesthetically venturesome.

Judith Farr “The Gardens of Emily Dickinson”
Page from Emily Dickinson’s herbarium (Houghton Library, Harvard University)

The page below collects 8 different types of violets – how divine!

Violet varieties from Emily Dickinson’s herbarium (Houghton Library, Harvard University)
Page from Emily Dickinson’s herbarium (Houghton Library, Harvard University)

The 60 page herbarium book can be viewed here. 

I really hope you enjoy it!

A Botanical Spring Walk in a National Park in Sydney

Video

Hello natural beauties I hope all is well in your world. The weather in Sydney is trying to warm up, but very slowly. I went for a walk the other day in local suburban bushland, Garigal National Park, and saw some beautiful indigenous plants and flowers. Walk with me past the cascade …

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Buy my 100% natural and organic botanical perfumes, and paperback book here: suzannerbanks.com.au

Digital downloads of my book Revelation! Reveal your Destiny with Essentials Oils:

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Garigal National Park, Belrose

 

Acacia (wattle)

 

Eucalyptus haemastoma – Scribbly gum

 

Grevillea …

 

Eucalyptus …

 

native flowers

 

 

 

Banksia serrata (Old Man Banksia)

 

Patersonia occidentalis (native bush Iris)

 

a peaceful walk after the rain

 

Thanks for joining me, wasn’t it lovely?

 

The Fragrant Plants of Late Summer in Sydney

Video

Hello natural beauties I hope you’re all well and happy. As the stinking hot edge to summer starts to taper off in Sydney, there are still so many beautiful flowers to behold. The scent is the draw card for me and here are a few pics I’ve taken in the past week. Long live summer!!! 

 

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Please check out my book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

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and many other stores worldwide as an ebook and paperback

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frangipani, Sydney

frangipani, Sydney

Of course the frangipani is still rockin, and will be for a while too as we’re in for a mild autumn!

Murraya peniculata

Murraya peniculata

 

The star of late summer is always the murraya, sometimes known as orange jessamine.  There’s no stopping this tree from blooming the intoxicating scent of deep jasmine mixed with gardenia and a little spice thrown in for good measure.

I never want to live without it – just like this bee!

 

 

And look at all the petals on the ground! So delicious, its a treat to walk outside.

murraya petals on the ground still smell so sweet

murraya petals on the ground still smell so sweet

 

And of course there’s always geranium to be found.

Geranium ad Anne and Martins place in my street

Geranium ad Anne and Martins place in my street

 

If you’re in late winter/spring what scented delights have you found?

Thanks again dear ones and remember to appreciate the little things in life, like scented flowers, you will remember these moments fondly in the end.

Peace.

copyright-2017

 

Wild Australian Bush Flowers in the Springtime

On a visit to my parents a couple of weeks ago I snapped these little beauties in the bush next to their house. I hope you enjoy these colourful delights, however, I must admit I don’t know all the botanical names! Argh! I”l have to become a botanist I think …..

 

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Please check out my new book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as an ebook and paperback

**************************************************************************************************************

 

Bush iris or native iris, Patersonia occidentalis

Bush iris or native iris,
Patersonia occidentalis

 

Egg and bacon plant, Pultenaea villosa Willd.

Egg and bacon plant, Pultenaea villosa Willd.

 

Waratah, Telopea speciosissima

Waratah, Telopea speciosissima

 

wild freesia , Freesia alba x Freesia leichtlinii

wild freesia , Freesia alba x Freesia leichtlinii

 

I have no idea what this sweet little flower is

I have no idea what this sweet little flower is

 

wattle, genus Acacia but I'm not sure what species this is

wattle, genus Acacia but I’m not sure what species this is

 

 

borania, genus name Boronia but I'm not sure which one this is

boronia, genus name Boronia but I’m not sure which one this is

grevillea, genus name Grevillea but I'm not sure what species

grevillea, genus name Grevillea but I’m not sure what species

 

protect our natural habitat

protect our natural habitat!

 

Thanks for enjoying this lovely Sydney springtime bush walk with me xoxo

copyright 2016

banks botanicals “REVELATION” ~ My New Botanical Perfume Collection

Hello lovely readers. My book has been out for a couple of years now,and its doing really well, which I’m both surprised and happy about of course. While I was writing the book I decided that this would mark my move into botanical perfume. I knew as the book was coming together, the perfumes were on the pages, but I had to extract and create them.

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Please check out my new book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as an ebook and paperback

**************************************************************************************************************

Me in my dressing room at TVSN

Me in my dressing room at TVSN

 

I was scared.

So I put the list of the oils in the book, under my bed, to allow messages to come to me while I was asleep. I think they may have stayed there for a year until I made new lists, which I stuck on my kitchen cupboards

So I had lists, and that was about it.

I was scared.

I felt I didn’t know what I was doing and compared myself to others in the field, who are very successful. I felt limited, and not courageous at all.

Then I found some bottles and made a decision about what form the perfumes would take – oil based perfumes.

 

I've got these gorgeous chamomile flowers in a teapot nest to my bed - sweet dreams!

I’ve got these gorgeous chamomile flowers in a teapot nest to my bed – sweet dreams!

 

Then I tried out some recipes on paper. I was still scared but I was moving forward. I always create on paper first. My challenge was that my classic Aromatherapy book has less than 50 oils in it, and I had to make 10 scents.

Then I made 10 samples and left them for a few months, as blends take some time to mature. Some were good. Some were not so good.

I was still scared I’d be found out as a fraud who knew nothing! But I kept going.

The next set of samples was better but I had a realisation – a “Revelation” in fact – that I was making aromatherapy oil blends NOT perfumes. So I started afresh. I started with a new mindset, to approach the blending differently than I would usually.

 

Dried juniper berries at a spice shop in Sydney

Dried juniper berries at a spice shop in Sydney

 

In the meantime fellow Perfumer and Aromatherapist Julie Nelson, of Aromatique Essentials, floated the idea of a botanical perfume event. I had been talking to Julie more and more and looked up to her as a mentor, so a little over a year ago we had a meeting about an event, and now we are almost at the first Australasian Artisan Botanical Perfume Expo ~ October 23rd ~ Sydney.

There’s nothing like a deadline to get you going, so I started making more samples. I’d wait a few months, test, make notes, and make new sample again. The more I worked the less fearful I became. Mind you I still freaked out about little things, but had to talk myself into the momentum, and accepting my individuality as a perfumer.

 

my little cuties

 

So at the perfume expo I’ll have 10 different perfumes that reflect the 10 active chapters in my book. I have used the “revelation formulas” to create each scent uniquely and really hope to see you there. My perfumes will be for sale in 9ml and 1ml samples.

xoxo

copyright 2016

My Jasmine – Spring has Sprung!

Dear lovers of natural scent, the jasmine buds have finally flowered! Spring has sprung with these tiny little flowers packed with the most delightful scent. My last jasmine post was 2 weeks ago and I had predicted I would have had flowers by then, but was disappointed I didn’t. A day after the article, a lone flower popped out….

 

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Please check out my new book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as an ebook and paperback

**************************************************************************************************************

At first there was one

lone flower

lone flower

 

And then there were three

three amigos

three amigos

 

And now

my jasmine

my jasmine

 

The plant is still only a couple of years old so I’m looking forward to more flowers next year.

Spring has sprung. I’m now counting down to summer!

What season are you in?

copyright 2016

The Australasian Artisan Botanical Perfume Expo ~ October 23rd ~ Sydney

Hi natural scent lovers. I’m here today to let you know about the inaugural Australasian Artisan Botanical Perfume Expo ~ October 23rd ~ Sydney. We are botanical perfumers from the southern hemisphere passionate about educating the world on the beauty of natural, BOTANICAL perfumes. Be part of the revolution of natural fragrance, beauty, sensuality, health and wellbeing.

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Please check out my new book REVELATION! – Reveal Your Destiny with Essential Oils

Barnes & Noble      Booktopia AU      Amazon UK

and many other stores worldwide as an ebook and paperback

**************************************************************************************************************

WHEN        Sunday, October 23, 2016 from 11:00 AM to 3:30 PM (AEDT)
WHERE      Kirribilli Neighbourhood Centre – 16-18 Fitzroy Street
                   Kirribilli, NSW, 2061
** close the to Kirribilli train station with lovely cafes in the village.
 
INCLUDED IN YOUR TICKET
A variety of teas to enjoy
Award winning dark chocolate mousse by Yalla (Gluten and preservative free)
fruit and more.
Gifts given out during the day by Lord Foppington
and
A door prize will be drawn at 2pm for one attendee to the value of $500 (Winner must be on site to receive the gift)

Lord Foppington himself will join us!

Lord Foppington himself will join us!

 
Our focus is Artisan Botanical Perfumery. We create truly beautiful and deeply evocative scents made with Mother Natures gifts and love. Every perfume has a story and is as unique as you.
Using natural ingredients, essential oils and botanical extracts, we strive to give you the best botanical perfumes in the world.
Many of the essential oils and botanical extracts we use are from the most remote places on the globe, grown and harvested under rigorous quality guidelines consistently preserving their finest essences. Let us not forget our distinctive and peerless Australian natives in some of the collections.

lovely lavender

lovely lavender

Our aim is to demonstrate that these divine gifts from Mother Nature are more than beautiful aromatic plants. They hold a life force of their own that when inhaled transport you to another place and time. This alone gives them amazing healing properties, in addition to the beautiful and captivating scents they hold.
Join us at our boutique event and experience the power of natural botanical fragrances that can transform you life!
Perfume collections by the exhibitors will be available for purchase.
I hope to see you there where I will be launching my first collection, which coincides with my book.
And stayed tuned over the next few weeks to meet the perfumers who will be exhibiting on the day xoxo
copyright 2016