The Many Uses Of Eucalyptus Citriodora Oil
Eucalyptus citriodora oil comes from a tree that is but one of several hundred different species of the genus eucalyptus. Eucalyptus citriodora is an essential oil that can function as a mosquito repellent, a deodorizer, an anti-rheumatism medication, a compound useful in treating skin, a sanitizer, and much more. If such a description makes this essential oil appear to be just another highly touted miracle compound, it would be doing eucalyptus citriodora essential oil a disfavor, as it indeed has a large number of valuable uses.
A more common name for this species of eucalyptus tree is the Lemon-Scented Gum tree, because of its habit of exuding large quantities of sap should its bark be damaged or broken. The tree is also called the Lemon Eucalyptus by some. A native of Australia, this tree can reach a height of up to 150 feet, and has a spread of up to 100 feet. Eucalyptus citriodora can however be grown in a container, or as a house plant, as it can be grown to be either a shrub or a tree. The leaves, which are about 6” long, are lemon scented. When grown in a garden, this graceful-looking tree is grown for its lemony scent as well as its shape. Its flowers and seed pods are quite small and rather inconspicuous. The leaves are usually yellow green in color, but in some cases will take on an almost golden color.
The wood of the fully grown trees is valuable as timber, and also makes exceptional firewood, but when the trees are grown commercially, they are grown is mostly for their foliage, the source of the essential oils. If constantly pruned back, new shoots will produce copious amounts of fresh foliage, definitely making this tree a highly renewable resource.
The Essential Oils Of Eucalyptus Citriodora
Like many species of eucalyptus, the Lemon-Scented Gum tree is a producer of volatile oils, and as such, it tends to burn quite rapidly, and even explosively, if caught up in a wildfire. The essential oils, as useful as they are, are treated as a hazardous material when stored or present in large quantities, although they are not considered to be hazardous under the normal conditions of their use.
The oils are obtained by a process of steam distillation. The many uses of these oils are a function of the concentration of the oils as well as of the compounds contained within the oils. Products containing these oils generally are marketed in concentrations of between 40% and 80%, with further dilution sometimes necessary or recommended for certain uses. As noted above, the oil, due to its scent and volatility, is an excellent insect repellent, and is very often the repellent of choice in areas where mosquitoes are prevalent. The oils also have medicinal uses, industrial uses, and are widely used as aromatics in the world of perfumes, soaps and cosmetics. The oil is very useful as an air freshener, and as a freshener for clothing as well.
Medicinal Uses of Citriodora Essential Oils
The essential oil of the Lemon Scented Gum/Lemon Eucalyptus has many well-established medicinal uses. It has both antibacterial and anti-fungal properties. It can be used as an antiseptic, and as an anti-inflammatory agent. The oil can be used as a calming agent for the skin under certain conditions, but may cause irritation if it comes into contact with sensitive skin, or if it is in contact with skin over a prolonged period of time. For that reason, products containing this essential oil may not be appropriate for use on children. The essential oils, when appropriately diluted, may be taken medicinally to treat respiratory infections, fungal infections such as Candida, and certain viral infections, and can also be used as an expectorant. These essential oils cannot and should not be used as a dietary supplement.
Not All Eucalyptus Oils Are The Same
While the essential oils of eucalyptus citriodora may be used in the same manner as the essential oils of a number of the other eucalyptus species, it always pays to read the label of any commercial eucalyptus-based product, as there are on occasion uses for some of the other oils that may not apply to citriodora oils. The essential oils of certain species of eucalyptus are either inappropriate for medicinal purposes, or are ineffective. In addition, eucalyptus shrubs and trees, though native to Australia, are currently being commercially grown in a number of countries. Both the climate the trees are growing in, and the processes used in the extraction of the oils can influence the chemical properties of the extracted oils. Put in simpler terms – all eucalyptus essential oils are not the same. For the most part, eucalyptus oils, when used in small amounts, and when appropriately diluted, are considered safe to use, with the most common side effects being skin or eye irritation if the oil is inappropriately used. With its lemony scent, eucalyptus citriodora is easy to recognize, and its oils are not apt to be confused with those of another species. The many and varied uses of the oils of this species are well documented.