Lemon Verbena is a plant native to South America. When crushed, it releases a refreshing lemon scent. The Spanish brought Lemon Verbena to Europe in the 18th century, where it was used in perfumes, to make a relaxing tea that aided in digestion and for cooking. When dried, Lemon Verbena can hold its scent for years, which makes it an ideal choice for potpourri. Once the essential oil is extracted from a verbena plant, it can be made into perfumes and used for aromatherapy. Extract the essential oil from verbena leaves in a few simple steps.
Place a brick in the bottom of the canning stock pot, and place the pot on the stove.
Pour enough water into the stock pot so that the water level hits just below the surface of the brick.
Add 2 cups of lemon verbena leaves to the water.
Place a metal bowl on top of the brick, facing up.
Turn the lid of the stock pot upside down and place it into the mouth of the pot so that the lid points downward into the bowl.
Fill the inverted lid with the three trays of ice.
Set the burner beneath the stock pot to its lowest setting.
Wait until the ice melts in the stock pot lid.
Carefully move the stock pot off of the burner.
Remove the stock pot lid and discard the melted ice by dumping it into the sink.
Take the bowl out of the stock pot carefully; using a pair of gloves or pot holders in case the bowl is hot. The essential oils will have condensed on the lid of the pot and dripped into the bowl.