Australia is home to almost all 700 known species of eucalyptus, making it the ideal location to source the oil.
Used to cleanse surfaces and the air, Eucalyptus oil can help promote feelings of relaxation and clear breathing.
How does it work?
Eucalyptus, Tea Tree, Manuka, Clove, and Lemon Myrtle all come from the same plant family, Myrtaceae. All species are woody, contain essential oils, and have flower parts in multiples of 4 or 5.
Eucalyptus trees are evergreen and consume a lot of water. The trees can grow up to 50 feet (15 m) tall, and the leaves of the tree are thin, long, and green. The essential oil is steam distilled from the leaf.
Eucalyptus radiata in South Africa:
- Trees are generally grown to a height of around 3 meters and no more than 4 meters.
- There is management needed in the first two years depending on external factors (weather, weeds, fire control).
- It takes two years for a tree to be ready for harvesting
- It coppices and is harvested annually.
- It is harvested by hand - and put through the chopper to pack the pots better.
- E ratiata can be harvested and distilled throughout the year.
- Leaves are distilled fresh – takes from 2-4 hours
- Leaf and stem material are distilled (though the oil occurs only in the leaf)
- How is the spent charge used? The spent leaf is burnt in the Dutch Oven of a boiler, another uses the spent charge to produce mulch, and re-introduced into the land, in some cases, farmers will mix it into their manure pile and fertilize with it.