Scientific name of it are Cymbopogon nardus L. Rendle and C. winterianus Jowitt
Citronella is a plant genus of the family Poaceae & belongs to Species C. Nardus
Synonyms of Citronella are Andropogon nardus, Cymbopogon, Cymbopogon nardus, Lemongrass, Lemon Grass, Citronella grass,Java citronella grass.
- Citronella is native to tropical regions of South and Central America, insular Southeast Asia, Africa,Australia,Queensland, and islands of the western Pacific
- In India Citronella is widely grown in Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, In the southern region, parts of UP and Assam in the north-eastern region and Uttaranchal in the northern region.
- Citronella grass thrives well in wide range of soils ranging from rich loamy to poor late rite. But sandy loam soil and red soils with good drainage and good organic matter is best suited for its cultivation.
- Citronella plant is perennial plant with thin and long green leaves.
- Citronella grow to about 2 m (6.6 ft) and have magenta-colored base stems. Citronella has pseudostems that are colored reddish.
- It has strong citrusy scent
- Citronella oil is brownish yellow in color.
Citronella oil is one of the essential oils obtained from the leaves and stems of different species of Cymbopogon.
- Phytochemical analysis of essential oil yielded geraniol (40.06%), citronellal (27.44%)and citronellol (10.45%) as the main constituents.
- Both Ceylon- and Java-type citronella oils contain over 80 constituents, primarily monoterpene compounds and minor amounts of sesquiterpenes.
- Main constituents of the Ceylon oil is citronellal and citronellol. Ceylon oil contains lower concentrations of citronellal and citronellol and higher concentrations of isomethyleugenol compared to the Java-type citronella oil.
- Phytochemical analysis of leaf essential oil yielded a mixture of monoterpenes, as citronellal (36.19%), geraniol (32.82%), and citronellol (11.37%).
The citronella oil from steam distillation considered rubefacient, antispasmodic, diaphoretic, sedating, analgesic. Citronella oil have widespread uses, including stress reduction, antibacterial or antiseptic action, and skin rejuvenation, Anti-Inflammatory and Pain Reducer.
- Apperance : It is yellow to brown colored free flowing liquid
- Solubility: Soluble in 0.8 to 1.5 vol. of 80% alcohol
- Odor : It has a grassy/floral sweet smell.
- Specific Gravity at 23°C : 0.8820 to 0.8875
- Refractive Index at 23°C : 1.4750 to 1.4885
- Flash Point: 175.00 °F. TCC ( 79.44 °C. )
- Inhibits Bacterial Growth : Components like methyl isoeugenol and a few others that are found in this essential oil are responsible for this property. They kill bacteria and inhibit any further bacterial growth in the body
- Fights Depression : This oil fights depression and gives relief from anxiety, sadness, and negative feelings.
- Eliminates Infections : The antiseptic properties of this essential oil fight infections in wounds, as well as the urinary tracts, urethra, prostate, and kidneys, while simultaneously protecting them from being sepsis.
- Anti-inflammatory Properties : Citronella essential oil sedates inflammation, particularly those situations which pertain to the liver, stomach, intestines and other parts of the digestive system.
- Eliminates Toxins : The diaphoretic properties of this essential oil increase sweating and promote the removal of toxins and other unwanted materials like excess water, fat, and salts from the body.
- Stimulates Urination : citronella essential oil has many benefits. It disposes of waste substances and toxins from the body, including uric acid, excess bile, acids, and salts, as well as water and fats. This helps reduce weight, eliminate infections in the urinary system, free the body from toxins.
- Reduces Fever : While the diaphoretic property of this oil increases perspiration, its anti-inflammatory property reduces inflammation, while the antimicrobial property fights infections. The combined effects of these three properties fight fever and reduce body temperature.
- Insect Repellant : This is one of the most commonly used properties of this essential oil, as it kills and keeps away insects.
- Stimulant : The stimulating effect of the essential oil of citronella stimulates blood circulation, secretions and discharges like hormones and enzymes from the glands, brain while also increasing activity in the nervous system.
- Acts as Tonic : This property means that citronella essential oil has an overall toning effect on the body. It tones up digestion, excretion, the nervous system, and the brain while fortifying the body.
- Many commercial repellents are manufactured using Citronella Java, and it is often used in combination with Cedarwood to produce a pleasant smelling natural insect repellent.
- Citronella Java is credited with having therapeutic properties as an antiseptic, deodorant, insecticide, parasitic, tonic and as a stimulant.
- It is also used in soaps and candles, and has common applications in massage.
- Citronella oil is used to revitalize the body and relieves the symptoms of jetlag, clears headaches and helps to combat nervous exhaustion and stress-related conditions.