Sweet, vibrant and unmistakeable , Commiphora Guidotti is the accepted Commiphora/Myrrh type used in mainstream commerce under the name Opoponax. Though there are other Commiphoras such as C. Erythrea also called Scented Myrrh and Opoponax, it is C. Guidotti that yields the Opoponax essential oil we are accustomed to.
After a long 6 months of setbacks, this shipment from our co-op in the Somali Puntland has finally cleared customs and is physically in the shop! Woohoo!!!
Fresh, fragrant and fair trade. What more could one ask for?
Both Commiphora Guidotti, known as “Hadi””, and Commiphora Erythrea, known in Somalia as “Hagar”, are sold as Opoponax in the West. Though they are closely related trees, their scent profiles are very different and each stands out as a unique resin with a signature scent of its own.
While Commiphora Erythrea has great depth, mystique and complexity, Commiphora Guidottti is forthright and bold, lending a bright, crisp and fresh top note to perfume and incense blends with its unmistakable zest.
After 2 years of work, this is our first shipment directly from Somalia to North America, bypassing a chain of middlemen who benefit at the expense of the harvesters. There is a nursery established to plant more trees in the wild and part of the profits from these sales find their way back to the harvester’s communities. This is a young venture, a novel approach to the traditional industry and I have high hopes for its growth and success.
Commiphora Guidotti is ruled Astrologically by the Moon as are its sisters C. Myrrha and C. Erythrea. In traditional Somali folk medicine, Opoponax is used to treat lower back pain and urinary tract issues. This is done by adding some resin the drinking water container and topping it up with fresh water when it gets low. The resin is not refreshed but left in the water for a period of days and untill the water no longer tastes or smells of the resin.. I do not know the dosage or the duration of the treatment and do not counsel anyone to try it.