Thyme is an evergreen perennial shrub that grows up to 45 cm (18 inches) in height. It has a woody root system with a multi-branched stem, and small elliptical greenish-grey leaves. This variety is native to Morocco. Thyme is derived from the Greek word thymos that means ‘perfume’. It was used in herbal medicines by the ancient Greeks, Egyptians and Romans, as incense in Greek temples, and in embalming by the Egyptians. During the Middle Ages it was given to jousting knights for courage, and a sprig of thyme was later carried into courtrooms to ward off diseases (as well as to freshen the air). It has been popular as a flavoring agent in foods for Millennia.
A top note with a strong aroma, Thyme has a woody, medicinal scent described as spicy and green.
Cautions: Thyme contains a high amount of thymol that can irritate mucus membranes, and must be diluted well before use. Avoid use if under the care of a medical practitioner. May cause skin irritation in some individuals; a skin test is recommended prior to use. Contact with eyes should be avoided.
NOTE: This oil may form crystals during transit or storage. Gentle warming in a hot water bath and stirring may be required.