Originally native to Australia, eucalyptus trees are now grown worldwide and used for their medicinal properties. Their healing power comes from eucalyptus oil, which is made from the tree’s oval-shaped leaves.
Eucalyptus oil hails from Australia, where various parts of the tree from its bark to its leaves were and are used by the Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander peoples for tools, shields, musical instruments, and health purposes.
Australia is home to almost all 700 known species of eucalyptus trees. These various species can dramatically range in height, anywhere from 30 to 200 feet high. The tallest eucalyptus tree, the Mountain Ash, can reach over 301 feet. The Eucalyptus Radiata tree is typically about 98 feet tall, sometimes reaching up to 164 feet.
Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus)is an evergreen tree native to Australia but cultivated worldwide. It was first used by the Aborigines in the dry outback—they chewed the roots, which hold a high concentration of water. They also drank eucalyptus tea as a remedy for fever. As this use spread, eucalyptus became known as Australian fever tea.
The highly concentrated oil that’s steam-distilled from the leaves of the tree has been used medicinally since at least 1788 when doctors reportedly noted the oil’s presence and began using it to treat chest problems and colic. In the late 1800s, its ability to promote sweating and clear mucus led to eucalyptus oil being prescribed for respiratory conditions, including bronchitis, flu, asthma, and coughs. As word about eucalyptus oil spread, it began to be used in other ways, including as a liniment for tired, sore muscles and to ease the pain of arthritis.
Based on the narration of English folklore, it is said that once when an English settler accidentally hurt his finger with an ax, his father had instructed him to keep some of the Eucalyptus leaves wrapped against the wound. Later, when a surgeon checked the injury, he was entirely galvanized by the healing done, especially without the lurking of any infection.