The many uses of eucalyptus oil
Why do most Australians refer to eucalyptus trees as gum trees? The answer to this question, and many more intriguing insights into the practical uses of eucalyptus oil, can be found in this article, including how to make your own!
Eucalyptus trees flourish in abundance in all parts of Australia. Australians grow up surrounded by the scent of eucalyptus; we find these trees in our bush lands, parks, gardens and back yards. Look out of your window, can you see one now?
There are eucalyptus trees all around us and we can easily find many practical uses for the affordable oil produced by this beautiful species of tree.
Eucalyptus oil for deterring pests
When ants seem determined to invade your pantry, or cockroaches are lurking in the laundry, eucalyptus oil is the defence you need to stop these nasties in their tracks. Use eucalyptus oil to wipe down areas where these pests have been sighted, the smell will deter them from returning. A strategically placed cotton wool ball, soaked with 3 or 4 drops of eucalyptus oil, will send these pests scurrying in search of somewhere more aromatically appealing!
Eucalyptus oil for wound healing
Eucalyptus oil is a powerful antiseptic and provides a strong defence against germs and bacteria. It is an effective treatment for healing wounds because it soothes the affected area and protects the open wound from infection. The application of a few drops of eucalyptus oil, diluted with water, can also help to relieve the sting of pesky insect bites.
Eucalyptus oil for pain relief
Eucalyptus oil contains analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. Joint and muscle pain caused by conditions including rheumatism, fibrosis and lumbago can be relieved by the application of eucalyptus oil. Massage the oil in a circular motion on the affected areas of the body.
Eucalyptus oil for wellbeing
Because the scent of eucalyptus oil is believed to be a stimulant, it may help to lift feelings of sluggishness and low mood. A few drops of eucalyptus oil in an oil burner, or bath tub, can help to rejuvenate the body and mind of anyone feeling unwell.
Eucalyptus oil for chocolate cravings
According to a study conducted by experts at Flinders University, when we imagine the scent of eucalyptus oil, our intense chocolate cravings will disappear. Next time you find yourself reaching for the Tim Tams, think of eucalyptus oil instead!
Crock pot cooking: a recipe to make your own eucalyptus oil
You can make your own eucalyptus oil at home in your crock pot or slow cooker.
Gently crush 30 grams of fresh eucalyptus leaves with your fist to release the oil.
Place the eucalyptus leaves in your crock pot or slow cooker.
Add 1 cup of olive oil for every 5 grams of leaves in the crock pot or slow cooker.
Place the lid on the crock pot or slow cooker and let the mixture steep for approximately 6 hours.
Strain the eucalyptus oil through a small-gauge mesh strainer and into an airtight jar made of dark glass.
Seal the jar and date it.
Store the eucalyptus oil in a cool, dry spot, where it will remain viable for 6 months. If you need it for longer, store it in the crisper drawer of your fridge, where it will last for approximately 1 year.
Recipe adapted from: Garden Guides > Homemade eucalyptus oil.
Did you come up with any theories as to why eucalypts are so often referred to as gum trees?
Well, it seems the term originated during the 1780s when Governor Arthur Philip observed indigenous Australians using the tannin-like substance exuded by the bark of the eucalypt tree to fasten barbs to the ends of spears and fishing sticks. Governor Philip considered the tree a most useful resource and it is he who is credited as being the first person to call the eucalypt a gum tree!
At RCA Villages we treasure our Australian native flora, like eucalyptus, so much so that we’ve even named Casey Grange Village villa designs after our much celebrated Acacia, Grevillea, Banksia and Teatree!
When using eucalyptus oil, it is important to avoid contact with the eyes, lips and tongue. Eucalyptus oil is not recommended for use during pregnancy.
By Lyndal Phillips | Content Services Melbourne
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