Botanical name: Syzygium aromaticum
Plant part: Buds
Extraction: Steam distillation
Originally from the Molucca Islands, now native to Indonesia, Madagascar and Zanzibar which is the world’s biggest producer, Cloves (Eugenia carylophyllata) have been with us for centuries and are believed to be one of the first traded spices.
Taken to China from Indonesia during the Han Dynasty (circa.200 BC) Cloves were renown in traditional Chinese Medicine for its attributed antifungal and antibacterial effect. Historical records document its use as early as 226BC when the sitting Emperor demanded that anyone who wanted to speak with him chew cloves before doing so to freshen their breath and eliminate bad breath. Ayurvedic healers used it as a natural remedy in treating digestive issues, fever, and respiratory issues.
The pink flower bud from this Evergreen tree is said to symbolize birth, while unopened is hand-picked and dried to become that brown color we all know and either sold whole or ground as a culinary spice or steam distilled to produce the Eugenol rich essential oil.