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Camel Grass (Vettiver)


Camel Grass or Vetiver has a long and rich history. Its fragrant dried roots find many uses such as scenting fabric and linen, freshening wardrobes or as pot-pourri when mixed with other dried flowers and leaves.

Vetiver is celebrated for the fragrant essential oil distilled from its roots. Due to its excellent fixative properties, Vetiver is used widely in numerous Western perfumes. Vetiver is a more common ingredient in fragrances for men; some notable examples include Dior Eau Sauvage, Guerlain Vetiver, Zizan by Ormonde Jayne and Vetiver by L'Occitane. The grounding quality of Vetiver essential oil is found in many fine perfumes such as Channel No. 5 and White Shoulders.

During summer a muslin sachet of vetiver roots is tossed into the earthen pot that keeps a household's drinking water cool to lend a distinctive flavour and aroma to the water. When used as a body scrubber Vetiver makes skin soft, prevents skin infection, helps in blood circulation and due to its fragrance body odours are controlled. When water is sprinkled on Vetiver roots, they impart a refreshing, fragrant coolness to the air that is redolent with the pristine earthiness of nature. The dried roots are generally placed in wardrobes to perfume linen with a fragrant, freshly laundered scent.

Khus Syrup is prepared by distilling the juice extracted from Vetiver roots. To make the syrup one simply needs to let the cleaned roots steep in a hot syrup (boiling is not advised as sometimes the syrup tends to get bitter). It is a good idea to add lime, since the woodiness and sweetness of Vetiver can get a bit tiring- a citrus twist can remedy this remarkably well. Khus Syrup is an ingredient in many refreshing coolers and mocktails.


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