Itâ€™s the rain and the dirt that mix together aromatically to set the mood for the day. The most refreshing of fragrances, the most ambrosial smell that brings us closer to emotions and sentiments as soft as the wet mud is one of the most cherished mysticism of nature. Now, the physics and logic, which in laymen terms would be some divine alchemy, is right there to back the romanticism up with science. How do we smell it? There is a common substance in the forests areas known as geosmin, produced by a bacteria called actinomycetes that swell the soil. Now, when the bacteria creates spores, the compound is secreted which are bounced into the air with force of the falling rain. The spores containing geosmin get splashed and spread in the air where they remain as we walk into them and to be received by the enticing fragrance.
Petrichor â€“ is what the smell is called.
Petrichor is a coin termed in 1964 by two scientists, Isabel Joy Bear and Roderick G. Thomas for an article in Nature, The British interdisciplinary Scientific journal formed in 1869. Petrichor, the word, is of Greek origin â€“ petra â€“ stone and ichor â€“ the blood of Gods.
The Potpourri of Petrichor:
The key ingredient that works in the mixture is the plant oil which is produced during arid periods. With air and rain, these compounds of oil are taken to the soil and rocks where they all mix together and emit the fragrance.
It is the organic mineral that interweaves with the different agents of nature to create the earthy smell â€“ one of the many little aesthetics of nature.