Ask the Perfumer 4/21/2013 Of Bees and Saunas

by | Apr 21, 2013 | Anya's Garden Perfumes | 4 comments

“Springtime” is a term that has little meaning in Miami.  We went from relatively pleasant weather that the northern part of the country envies to hot, steamy, sauna-like weather in  the blink of an eye.  It typically starts now, in mid-April.  The humidity at 9 a.m. is 89%. The temperature will go to the high 80s (F) today. With brief, sometimes only a few-hours-long respite, it tends to stay this way until late October.  Well, at least our skin stays well moisturized!  And, well, the best part, the one part I live for – our tropical flowers are now going into full blooming mode.

All my jasmines, the ylang, the frangipani, the rangoon creeper and many others in my garden are now bursting forth with their gorgeously-scented flowers.

Here’s a humidity-hampered photo of a bumblebee having a nice tasty time on my orange jasmine tree. I’ve never been stung by a bee or wasp, even though I’ve stumbled – and bumbled – into their territory my entire life.  Most bees on the orange jasmine can be combative, well, maybe just confrontational.  They’ll see me hovering and turn around and give me some attitude.  Yes, the nectar is that good, I guess.  This guy was shy and just flew away, so I was glad to get this one, quick. poorly-exposed shot.  A nice photo of the flowers is below.  Gorgeous flowers, yes?

Has springtime sprung where you live?  Are you jockeying with the bees for sniff and viewing time with the flowers?  I’d love to hear what’s blooming in your part of the world, especially those in the Southern Hemisphere, where it’s Fall!

Any perfumery questions will be entertained until 10 PM ET USA.  Don’t forget to subscribe to the blog, and if you leave a comment, to subscribe to the comments in the tread so you can see responses.  There will be a guest blogger here on Tuesday, Apr 23, with a report on a class in pre-modern Indian perfumes.  It’s soooo interesting, so make sure you’re subscribed to get all my updates.

bumblebee feasting on delicious, fragrant orange jasmine flowers

honeybee feasting on delicious, fragrant orange jasmine flowers


orange jasmine, a garden buffet

orange jasmine, a garden buffet


  1. Barry

    Speaking of sauna’s, I have a real sauna in my house that I built myself and we use it weekly. I frequently put some kind of essential oil on the hot rocks, usually eucalyptus or frankincense. Anybody got any other ideas?

  2. Fallah

    Hi Anya,

    My question is about smelling on a test strip vs on one’s own skin. As I’m blending I usually smell the perfume on a test strip. It does seem like sometimes when I put the perfume on my skin though, the smell changes completely, the structure I smelled on the strip seems to totally fall apart. How important is this? What if I didn’t test on my skin at all? I assume it’s my own chemistry that is shifting the perfume and I would be better off making it work on the test strip so that It will work on many peoples’ skin.

    Thanks so much,

    • Anya

      Dear Fallah:

      Our own skin chemistry can truly alter the drydown of the perfume. The scent strip is the true indicator of a true drydown. D
      Don’t be discouraged. You skin may not ‘like’ some aromatics. For instance, vetiver makes me ill, physically ill, and manderin has a hint of dead mouse. I’m speaking of the oils, even before blended in a perfume. So, I’d never be able to give an objective evaluation of the perfume with them in it.


  3. Brian Shea

    Like I said on FB, it feels like summer got here a little early. I don’t remember it being THIS hot and steamy THIS early. I don’t remember it getting like this till about mid-May or June.
    Anyway, yes, the flowers are loving the rain and heat. My deep violet(erroneously called ‘blue’) vanda orchid is blooming now, and my phalenopsis’ have been blooming for a month or so already. My black sweet potato threw out a bloom, as it does now and then(it never does that up north), and my helconia is blooming as usual. I’ve got blooms on my cannas,bougainvillea,opuntia, and moss rose and my neoregelia ‘Voodoo Dolly'(gods I love that name!LOL!) is starting to color it’s electric purple on the insides and it’s going to bloom too. I’m so excited that I found a little inflorescense on my ‘Key West Red’ plumeria! I’m not moving it or doing anything to it. That poor thing, everytime it’s about to bloom, something happens to it! And then it looses it’s buds. I’ve never had it come to bloom the whole decade I’ve had it! I’ve read the scent variously described as ‘rose’, ‘almond’ or ‘frangipani’. I cant wait to find out for sure!
    Oh, my mango is blooming again! The last flush of buds dried up and withered away without leaving any fruit, so this time I hope I get some fruit!


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



error: Copyright Content