Incense Making Logo  
Step by Step Guides to Natural Incense Making   

FREE Incense
Making Newsletter




Vetiveria zizanoides


Description: A tall tropical perennial grass whose roots grow downward of 10 ft. (3m) and greatly help prevent soil erosion. It's widely used in many parts of the world to battle soil erosion. The roots of the plant are aromatic and used for thousands of years for incense practices and medicinal purposes.

The older and healthier the plant, the better the quality of oil found in its roots. Vetiver oil is known in India and Sri Lanka as the "oil of tranquility," and the plant and its roots as "khus."

Vetiver grass is woven into screens to make shades and blinds, which are often misted with water to produce natural cooling effects when winds pass through. This also helps repel insects.

Family: Poaceae (Gramineae)

Synonyms: khus, khus khus, vetiveria, vetivert, "Oil of Tranquility"

Origin: India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, Re'union, Haiti, etc.

Parts Used: dried roots

Aroma Description: earthy, sweet, heavy, erotic fragrance

Emotional Attributes: relaxing, strengthening, sensuous, love, comforting, uplifting, grounding

Cosmetic Uses: perfumery, aromatherapy; treats mature, dry or irritated skin, acne, wounds. Strengthens connective tissues. Used in soaps, lotions, creams, etc.

Culinary Uses: roots are used to make "khus water" for flavoring candy and fruit drinks in India

Medicinal Attributes: used internally for nervous and circulatory problems. Externally it's been used as an all around tonic bath, to ease muscle pains, as well as treatment for lice

Element Association: Earth

Magical Associations: protection, luck, prosperity

Astrological Association: Capricorn

Planetary Association: Earth

Season: Autumn, Winter

Aromatic Note: Base note

Essential Oil: Yes. Known as "Oil of Tranquility" in India. Steam distillation of dried roots. Improves with age. Fixative properties.

Mixes Well With: aloeswood, benzoin, cedarwood, lemon balm, musk seeds, nutmeg, patchouli, sandalwood, spikenard, tonka beans, valerian root, vanilla, etc.

Medical Disclaimer: Information on this web site is for entertainment purposes only. This information is NOT intended as medical advice or for use as diagnosis or treatment of a health problem or as a substitute for consulting a licensed medical professional.

Back to Top