Aromatherapy: Becoming a Practitioner

I’m a fully trained and qualified aromatherapist, yet, aside from massage for friends and family, I don’t practice or charge for treatments.  When I first qualified in 2005 after a year’s full on training, and with many hours of case study under my belt, I was absolutely sure that I would become self employed and leave my desk job.  However, I still needed an income, so couldn’t just plunge straight in.  So, it went on the back burner until I figured out what to do, and to all intents and purposes, that’s where it has stayed.

The itch to practice however, has never gone away.  I love the feeling of heat in my hands when massaging.  I love the study of the plants, the essential oils and their uses.  I periodically dream of setting up in business and seeing clients in their own homes.  Yet, I don’t actually do anything about it.  I know I can’t work from home because my house is just not practical in its configuration.  I worry about the cost of hiring a therapy space and then finding no clients coming through the door.  I guess I’m just super cautious and clearly not a risk taker.

So, what can I do to share my love of aromatherapy?  Well, I can write about it, that’s for sure.  I can grow medicinal plants and herbs in my garden.  I can get creative, making lotions and potions as gifts (I’m thinking teacup candles in vintage china).  I can read all the latest professional journals and keep up to date with what’s happening in the aromatherapy world.  And of course, I can still offer massage to my friends and family when they need it!

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I’d be interested to know if any other therapists have faced this dilemma and how they approached it.


The Garden In June

June is a funny month in the garden with spring flowers just going over, but summer not quite in bloom.  The alliums are still going strong, adding pops of purple to the borders and the aquilegia and Californian lilac add some lovely swathes of blue in the back borders.  I’ve set up my veg garden at the side of the house where there’s lots of sun, but not much to see yet.  The lilies in pots at the front of the picture should be out soon and there are one or two clematis in bud.  This time of year is when I think the garden takes on its most ‘cottage garden’ look.  Right at the back I have lavender and jasmine in my quiet corner -not flowering yet, but when they do, it’s by far the most fragrant place to sit in the summer.


The Garden in May

May is the month when everything goes from nought to sixty in 20 seconds!  We have an abundance of pinks and purples with aquilegia, weigela, clematis and ceanothus all in bloom.



The herb garden is looking lush too with chives, parsley and mint which are right by the back door.


This is a view of my quiet corner where I can sit on the rickety old benches and look up at the house.


This my secret composting corner, hidden from view by this huge pyracantha.  Look like a wild woman in this pic!DSCF1569

The Garden In April


April holds such promise!  Everything springs to life and the garden starts to get slightly out of control…not a bad thing in my book.


Lots of yellow to be seen with the forsythia, daffs and kerria japonica, plus an unknown plant I took a cutting from a few years back and kept because it’s good ground cover.


The bluebells and grape hyacinth are up and the snowy mespilus is in full blossom.


The clematis montana has fat little buds ready to pop.


The tulips have been a bit disappointing (I think the squirrels are eating them) but this black one looks magnificent.


Finally, it wouldn’t be April without our second cherry tree coming into flower.  Love the way this one hangs in bunches.


Anyone else have a woodland garden?  I’d love to see pics!

The Garden in March

I know for sure that spring has sprung in the garden when the cherry blossom appears.  This cherry tree dominates my garden and much of the planting has to be done to take into account its shade.


I’ve underplanted it with woodland plants, including this lovely dark hellebore.


The kerria japonica is just about showing itself, as is the bergenia.  The camellia is finally flowering too!


We have lots of daffs, crocus and a few early tulips now, so I’ve been out cutting back last year’s dead growth on the perennials so that I can see the spring flowers popping up.


Looking forward to the warmer weather now!

My Inner Hippie

In celebration of 1st March, I’m introducing you to my inner hippie, who definitely comes out to play in the lighter months.


My inner hippie:

  1. Has wild curly hair, freckles and pale skin. She does not tan and hides under an umbrella when the sun comes out!
  2. Gardens in a scruffy but comfortable manner.  She works on the ‘pull a few weeds as you go past’ school of management and doesn’t kill any living thing (even those red lily beetles which she is supposed to pick off, but can’t quite bring herself to do it).
  3. Reads lots of books, especially about plants, potions and healthy stuff.
  4. Loves wildlife and goes on the odd bird watching expedition.
  5. Holidays in places where nature is at its best, but is not averse to a city break if there are shops involved.
  6. Is crazy about charity shops and cannot walk past one without making a cheeky purchase.
  7. Likes to try out her Spanish & French conversation skills on holiday and doesn’t care if she looks stupid.
  8. Would spend all day in a kaftan and no knickers is she could get away with it.
  9. Likes to have her toes in sand, or on grass and her hands in mud and soil.
  10. Sings like no-one is listening.
  11. Performs the odd yoga move
  12. Enjoys a rock concert from time to time
  13. Cooks a bit erratically, but makes a good curry
  14. Occasionally reads Tarot and Goddess cards
  15. Understands the secrets of aromatherapy
  16. Rocks leather now and then
  17. Wears Birkenstocks in the summer
  18. Has a penchant for sparkly, floaty stuff: especially harem pants, long skirts, scarves and jewelled slippers!
  19. Secretly likes to think she is a Welsh goddess
  20. Blogs as Flowerpowerlife

A Walk Around My Garden: February

Taking a wander around the plot this week, you can really feel spring in the air.   There are daffs and tulips pushing through and a few clumps of snowdrops are showing their pretty little heads.

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This hellebore has been flowering for weeks but the camellia is stubbornly refusing to come out of bud.



At this time of year, the lawn (aka scruffy patch of grass) is like a quagmire and it makes the whole garden look a bit of a mess.  In a funny way though, I can identify with the scruffiness as it’s a bit like me with my mad hair!   I’ve never been a tidy gardener.  I get excited about the plants, but not necessarily the way the garden looks.  I like to see plants crammed together and love seeing clematis clambering up whatever happens to get in its path.

The other thing about my garden is that it’s a haven for birds.  The pyracantha has been virtually destroyed by a happy household of sparrows, but I don’t have the heart to hard prune it and turf them out.  We have a copse of trees behind us, so regularly get visits from nuthatches, sparrowhawks, woodpeckers and long tailed tits as well as our live in families of blue tits, great tits, robins and wood pigeons.  Our blackbirds are wise to the fact that we are a soft touch and wait, not so patiently, on the shed roof for their morning treat of sultanas.

Next  month  I’ll have more to report on the plant front I hope!    I’ve acquired a couple of new plant books to keep me amused ’til then.

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Happy  gardening!