North·The Arctic Kitchen

Manitoba woman put cloves in oranges, house smells awesome

Stick some cloves in an orange and you've got yourself a natural air freshener that lasts for weeks. Perfect for the holiday season.

'As soon as I walk into our house you can smell it'

Kimmie Charlton loves to make orange-clove pomanders during the holidays. She says they smell fantastic. (Kimmie Charlton)

If you want a house that smells like heaven, stick cloves in an orange. Simple as that.

"It really makes a room smell so pretty and natural smelling!" said Kimmie Charlton to CBC over Facebook messenger.

Charlton lives in Douglas, Manitoba, and has been sticking cloves in oranges for years.

"I saw someone do this on TV about 10 years ago and I thought that I would try it," she said.

Scented balls like this are called pomanders, and people have been making them for generations.

Orange clove pomanders make great decorations, smell fantastic and last for weeks. (Kimmie Charlton)

According to The Old Farmer's Almanac website, "medieval herbalists used pomanders — mixtures of fragrant, dried herbs in cloth bags or perforated boxes — to ward off illness or bring strength and good fortune."

Now they are mainly used as decorations and to make homes smell nice.

And for many people, December is the best time for an orange-clove pomander.

"I really loved the beautiful smell that reminded me of Christmas," said Charlton.

"It reminded me of how we got oranges in the toe of our Christmas Stocking!" she added.

Kimmie Charlton likes to stick cloves in mandarin oranges when making pomanders. (Kimmie Charlton)

Chartlon took a picture of one of her orange-clove pomanders and posted it on CBC North's Facebook group, The Arctic Kitchen.

It was very popular.

"This was a Christmas tradition when I was growing up. I'd completely forgotten about this, thanks for the reminder," said one member of the group.

"I'm so going to start this tradition with my kids tomorrow," said another.

"I really loved reading responses about how it made people feel!" Charlton said to CBC.

If you are thinking about trying an orange-clove pomander at home this holiday season, now's the perfect time.

Charlton says they stay fresh and aromatic for up to six weeks.


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