Sweet Orange

Citrus sinensis

The orange tree (Citrus sinensis), is a fruit tree of the Rutaceae family native to Asia. It is the result of a natural hybridisation between grapefruit (Citrus maxima) and mandarin (Citrus reticulata).

  • Bath

  • Dermal application

  • Oral route

  • Respiratory route

As the essence of Citrus sinensis is phototoxic, avoid exposure to sunlight for twenty four hours after applying it. A skin test should be performed before using it for massages or beauty care as it is an irritant to some. Moreover, attention should be paid to certain drug interactions.

Do not use in: pregnant or breast-feeding women, children under the age of three years, persons allergic to one of the components (geraniol, linalool, limonene), subjects with asthma without the advice of an allergologist before the first use, over a long period in persons with functional kidney failure (monoterpenes).

Take 1 drop of essence of sweet orange in one teaspoon of honey, or on a neutral tablet, three times per day for five days.

3 to 5 drops of essence of sweet orange give flavour to flans, puddings, fruit salads and pastries and facilitate digestion.

Pour 10 drops of essence of sweet orange in a spoonful of powdered milk or neutral base for the bath in very hot water.

Insect stings
Apply 1 drop of pure essence of sweet orange onto the sting. Do not expose the skin to sunlight afterwards. In the event of exposure to sunlight, replace with 1 drop of essential oil of spike lavender.


Growing to a height of up to ten metres, it has spiny branches and leaves of four to ten centimetres. Its fruit – actually a berry – is called sweet orange to distinguish it from that of the bitter orange tree (Citrus aurantium).

Mignon sang "Do you know the country where the orange tree flowers?". Talleyrand's opinion of life under the Old Regime could be applied to orange, the fruit of happiness: he who ignores its flavour is ignorant of the gentle lifestyle. In Antiquity, the golden apples in the garden of the Hesperides were in fact oranges. Introduced to Europe by the Portuguese navigators returning from China – hence its Arabic and Greek names burtughal and portokali – sweet orange in German is a "Chinese apple" (Apfelsine). The glorious fruit overshadows the tree's bark, that can be used to make an excellent aperitif, and the leaves, that Mattioli claimed to promote sweating to "eliminate all the nasty humours through the skin". The fruit have been used to adorn countless chimneys, certifying the bride's virginity.


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Excerpts from the book

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