I’m pleased to announce that the Barefoot Botanist (that’s me) will embark on a 20-day “aromatic odyssey” on June 8.” The goal of the journey is to celebrate my botanical roots and network of artisanal and co-operative farmers and distillers across Europe.
This very personal journey will take us to some of the farms we use to source the wonderful oils that make up our products, and end at the burial place of my great grandparents and grandparents. We will visit the farm my great grandparents used to tend—where my passion for plants and the natural world was kindled! I was born and raised in a botanical dynasty. I spent my early years following my grandfather and uncles in search of rare plants (hence, my “barefoot botanist” designation.) My wife and I are so excited to undertake this botanical pilgrimage.
Our Aromatic Odyssey will take us from the extreme east of Europe for the romance of the rose harvest, then to the land of my forebears in England where the chamomile, hyssop and peppermint grow. We will stop in Croatia – the home of the world’s most treasured helichrysum oil – and in the meadows of Provence, France where we source our sweet lavender, thyme and clary sage.
- June 8: Arrive Sofia, Bulgaria,
- 4 days participating in the rose harvest and talking to farmers and distillers of rose and other Bulgarian essential oils
- June 13: Fly to Milan, Italy then travel down the Italian coast to Ancona by train, Night boat to Split, Croatia
- 4 days in Croatia meeting growers, harvesters and distillers of Croatian lavender and wild helichrysum (visit island of Hvar)
- Fly to Geneva
- 4 days in Provence visiting lavender farms, and meeting with our distillers of lavender, clary sage, basil etc. Just in time (or just before) the lavender harvest
- Train to Paris and London
- 3 days in East Anglia to visit distillers of our chamomile, peppermint and hyssop
- Finish at the graves of my grandparents and great grandparents next to the chamomile farm. Make an aromatic gravesite dedication
- June 28:return to Arizona
Check back for updates and photos from the road!