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Orris root is the dried, aged rootstock of a variety of “bearded” iris commonly known as Purple Flag. Although the roots resemble ginger root in appearance, they take on an aroma similar to the violet after curing. The cut and sifted root can be tinctured, but is most often used in herb pillows, linen sachets and potpourri.
With prolific and various displays of colorful flowers, the Iris genus is thought to be named for the goddess Iris of Greek mythology. From ancient times, the Iris was regarded as a symbol of strength and a connector to the divine. Egyptians tucked pieces of the plant into the head-dressing of the Sphinx. The prominent three petals of the blossoms were thought to provide a connection to the virtues of faith, wisdom and courage.
The root, described in literature from the 15th century, is traditionally used to counter a variety of gastrointestinal and skin conditions, and very often for flavoring and scenting. In fact, Orris root is an ingredient of the famous Bombay Sapphire gin and is used as a fixative in potpourris and sachets.
Background: With prolific and various displays of colorful flowers, the genus is thought to be named for the goddess Iris of Greek mythology. From ancient times, iris was regarded as a symbol of strength and a connector to the divine- said to be central to the origin of the sceptre. Egyptians placed it into the head-dressing of the Sphinx. The prominent three petals of the blossoms connected to the virtues of faith, wisdom and courage.
The root, described in literature from the 15th century, was used for a variety of health benefits and very often for flavoring and scenting. It is an ingredient of the famous Bombay Sapphire gin.
Orris to attract love and to protect: During a waxing moon, place powdered orris root into a cloth bag with items that represent love. Squeeze it with your dominant hand and, thus, will your wish for love be fulfilled.
Recipe: Special Pan Pudding:10 thin pieces of dry bread, 2 c. milk, 2 eggs, 1 c sugar, 7 oz. melted butter, 1/3 c monukka raisins, 1 tsp powder of grains of paradise, 1 tsp powder of orris root
Break bread, place into lined pan. Cover with in milk and egg mixture. Spread the mixture of sugar, butter, fruit and powders. Bake until golden brown at 345 degrees. Cool and serve with love.
Applications: Emetic, cathartic, and diuretic
Orris Root is used medicinally for oral and dental health, bronchitis, diarrhea, liver congestion and dropsy.
Root powder is used in perfumery, potpourris and sachets, and for scenting and flavoring. Its scent is similar to violet. It is included in a variety of cosmetic formulas. The volatile otto of orris is a favorite scent fixative. The fresh root juice has been used to remove skin discolorations and freckles. The root yields a black dye. The flower yields a blue dye. The seeds are used as beads.
Description: This flowering plant grows to 3 feet tall, with bluish-green, narrow, flat, sword shaped leaves - the largest of all the species. Large, deep blue, or purplish-blue flowers bloom in spring, show three bending petals of faint purple, inclining to blue. Purple veins run lengthwise; the beard is yellow, three erect petals are bright blue, with faint purple lines. Flowers have an agreeable scent. The brownish creeping rootstock is thick, fleshy, spreading over the surface of the ground.
Infusion: 2 tsp of dried herb or powder to 1 c. boiling water. Infuse for 10 minutes. Strain.
There is no known negative safety information available for this herb
|Use in body powders and to thicken skin lotions and creams.|
|culinary||Internal use is not recommended.|
|aromatic||Add to potpourri as a fixative. Orris root is also used in perfumery.|