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Pelargonium graveolens
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Geraniales
Family: Geraniaceae
Genus: Pelargonium
Species: P. graveolens
Binomial name
Pelargonium graveolens

Pelargonium graveolens is a species in the Pelargonium genus, which is indigenous to various parts of southern Africa, and in particular South Africa. It is often called geranium as it falls within the plant family Geraniaceae, although more correctly, it is referred to as Pelargonium. This specific species has great importance in the perfume industry. It is cultivated on a large scale and its foliage is distilled for its scent. P. graveolens cultivars have a wide variety of smells, including rose, citrus, mint, coconut and nutmeg, as well as various fruits. However, the most commercially important varieties are those that have rose scents.


Nomenclature and taxonomy



Common names include rose geranium [1][2][3], old fashion rose geranium[2], and rose-scent geranium[1]. Pelargonium graveolens is also known by taxonomic synonyms "Geranium terebinthinaceum Cav." and Pelargonium terebinthinaceum (Cav.) Desf."[1] "Rose geranium" is sometimes used to refer to "Pelargonium incrassatum (Andrews) Sims" or its synonym "Pelargonium roseum - the herbal name- (Andrews) DC."[4] Commercial vendors often list the source of geranium or rose geranium essential oil as Palargonium graveolens regardless of its herbal botanical name.


Pelargonium distillates and absolutes, commonly known as "geranium oil," is sold for aromatherapy and massage therapy applications is sometimes used to supplement or adulterate more expensive rose oils. Other applications include


The variety that matches this name is Lady Plymouth Geranium. Rose Geranium's botanical name is Pelargonium radula

Aroma profile



Notes and references

  1. ^ a b c d USDA ARS NPGS. "Pelargonium graveolens information from NPGS/GRIN". United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Agricultural Research Service (ARS), National Plant Germplasm System (NPGS). Accessed June 23, 2007.
  2. ^ a b "Pelargonium graveolens". Plants For A Future. Accessed June 23, 2007.
  3. ^ USDA NCRS. "PLANTS Profile for Pelargonium graveolens (sweet scented geranium)". United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NCRS), PLANTS Database. Accessed June 23, 2007.
  4. ^ "Pelargonium incrassatum". Plants For A Future. Accessed June 23, 2007.
  5. ^ a b Shellie, Robert A.; Philip J. Marriott (2003). "Comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis of Pelargonium graveolens essential oil using rapid scanning quadrupole mass spectrometry". The Analyst (chemistry journal) 128: 879–883. doi:10.1039/b304371a. 
  6. ^ a b Gupta, Ritika et al. (2001). "Characteristics of an isomenthone-rich somaclonal mutant isolated in a geraniol-rich rose-scented geranium accession of Pelargonium graveolens". Flavour and Fragrance Journal 16 (5): 319–324. doi:10.1002/ffj.1002. 

See also


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