30 July 2015

Puress. Oil essence from Trieste’s Karst

Local aromas, essential oils and infusions

I’m always amazed when I discover new things just a few steps from home, especially when I discover them on internet… That’s what happened with the fields of aromatic herbs of Puress.Oil; I found the information on line and curiously went to have a look.

In Banne, a small location of Trieste’s Karst, there’s a wide field of almost 8.000 square meters, separated by dry stone walls that in the past separated fields that grew vegetables from the onesthat grew buckwheat.

In 2010, Martina, a botanist and herbalist, decided to redevelop these fields that had been long abandoned. In 5 years of hard work the area became a wide stretch of neatly farmed local aromatic herbs.

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Some of them let out an intense aroma, others color the bare land of the Karst with colorful flowers; others have already been picked and put in the food drier run by sun light, that Marina and her husband built.

With abundant details, the “lady of the house” tells me all about the work she’s done in these years, a work of complete devotion and love for nature.

As we walked in between the lavender, the sage, santureja, wild fennel, lemon balm, rosemary, mint, chamomile and hyssop, Martina tells me all the secrets about taking care of her plants. There’s no irrigation system: this helps not spoil the plant so that they create their own natural defenses by releasing more essential oils. The amount of oil increases in the periods of draught; if the summer is hot and dry, the final product will be much better.

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Close to the field Martina created a little showroom where she shows and sells her aromatic blends, the herb salts (based on a non refined salt from the salt works of Sicciole and mixed with the aromatic herbs), the infusions that can be accompanied by linden honey, and also soaps with lavender, thyme, oils and calendula.

And as I’m immersed in nature, by the shade of a tree, I sip a glass of elderberry syrup and essence of linden, happy with the wonderful morning spent with Martina and her plants.

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