Making Homemade Potpourri for the Holidays

Fall is a wonderful time to gather up some common spices and make your own potpourri. While the word “potpourri” literally means, “rotten pot”, there is nothing rotten about making a good smelling scent for your home for the holidays or give as gifts. You can gather almost anything to make potpourri. Use good smelling spices, herbs and even fresh flowers to add to the mix. You can also add some color by adding fresh leaves or dried flower blossoms.

When you make your homemade potpourri, think about adding a bit of ground orris root. This additive will allow your potpourri to last longer. Essential oils that you can purchase at any arts and craft stores will also help your potpourri smelling great for a while.

For best results, store your homemade potpourri in a non-metal container for up to six weeks. Cover the container and place it in a cool, dry and dark place. Make sure you stir your mix periodically. This homemade potpourri makes a great gift at the holidays. If you are giving it around Thanksgiving, consider adding some festive orange or yellow flower blossoms. You can do the same at Christmas. Use decorative bags and tags to wrap your homemade potpourri when you give it to gifts.

Here are some homemade potpourri recipes that smell wonderful.

Spice Mix: This is a perfect mixture for the fall months. Set this out during the holidays for a wonderful spicy aroma.

5 cinnamon sticks
6 whole nutmegs
3 whole vanilla beans (available in the spice isle at the grocery store)
�½ cup of cloves
1 tablespoon of ground allspice
1 tablespoon of crushed anise seed
�½ cup orris root (you can buy this at arts and craft stores)

Start by breaking the whole nutmegs and cinnamon sticks and place them in a paper bag. Use a hammer to crush the spices. Use a sharp pair of scissors to cut the vanilla beans into small pieces. Mix all of the ingredients together and place in a glass jar for up to six weeks.

Citrus Potpourri: Nothing smells fresher than the scent of fresh citrus. Dried orange slices and lemon slices can be added to this recipe for an added touch. Add a few oranges with cloves in them for a festive look.

2 tablespoons of dried orris root
5 tablespoons of Bearberry leaves
several drops of lemon oil (essential oil works fine)
1/ 2 cup dried yarrow blooms
�½ cup lemon verbena
�¼ cup dried Safflower blossoms
�¼ cup dried orange slices

Mix all ingredients together and place in a glass container with a lid. Allow the potpourri to sit for six weeks for the maximum fragrance.

Peppermint Potpourri: Here is a great recipe for the holidays. You can make this and put it in jars decorated with candy canes to give as memorable gifts.

�½ cup dried rose petals
�¼ cup of black peppermint
1 tablespoon of lemon rind (use a zester)
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 tablespoon of orris root

Place the ingredients and a large container and stir gently. If you are using whole rose buds, be careful not to tear the buds while you stir. Seal the container and allow it to sit for up to six weeks.

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