When animals are exposed to stress in their environment, they can respond by moving. Plants do not have this luxury and must instead produce phytochemicals in response.  These phytochemicals are considered secondary metabolites and are similar to the color of flowers that a given plant producers.

Many of these phytochemicals are useful to people and we incorporate them in ourselves when we ingest plants, when we absorb them topically, when we smell them, or taste them.

Of the thousands and thousands of plants which are accessible to us, about a hundred have smells which we find pleasant and can use as fragrances or in aromatherapy applications.  As Samuel Ethnobotanics uses only naturally occurring, non-reacted products we get our fragrance from essential oils. 

Our views about fragrance are the same as our views about plant and seed oils, they should be simple and extremely high quality.  General Salve No. 18 is a vehicle for one of our three essential oils: 


Rose Absolute (Rosa damascena) essential oil has been traded along the silk road for generations and been used as an ingredient for baking as well as in the production of perfumes. Aside from its distinctive fragrance, Rose has antimicrobial properties and is utilized in aromatherapy to assist in relaxation. 

Frankincense (Boswellia sacra) essential oil is an ancient resin which has been traded for thousands of years and is indigenous to the southern Arabian peninsula. We source our Frankincense from Oman where it is distilled in country and the community owns the production.  The resin which is produced by the tree has antimicrobial properties and is used by the tree to protect itself. The odor has a woody, earthy, and sweet character, with some resemblance to pine.

Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata) essential oil comes from a bright and fragrant flowers and has been traded throughout the Indian ocean since the days of the silk road. The fragrance is sweet and floral and has been used traditional to reduce anxiety.  We source our Ylang Ylang from the island of Comoros, just north of Madagascar.