Eucalyptus blue gum Tree Uses
Tree Healing Therapy
Botanicalname Eucalyptus globulus / Family Myrtaceae
Eucalyptus blue gum belongs to the myrtle family and is native to Tasmania and Australia. It is a tall, straight, evergreen tree that is mainly cultivated in unhealthy low-lying or, swampy districts. Its rough, deeply furrowed bark can be grey- blue or reddish and peels off in large strips, hence the name 'stringy bark tree'. The juvenile leaves are broad and a waxy whitish-green, but are succeeded by a mature, dark blueish-green, sickle-shaped form. Its almost stalk less flowers bloom singly or in clusters and produce copious nectar. The fruit is a woody capsule with valves that open on the top, shedding numerous small seeds.History, mystery and spiritual healing Eucalyptus blue gum was first collected on the south-east coast of Tasmania in 1792-3 by Jacques Labillardiera and described by him in 1799. It is said that he named it E. globulus because its spherical, waxy fruit bore a strong resemblance to a kind of round button then worn in France. Much later, on 27 November 1962, the tree was proclaimed the official floral emblem of Tasmania, but is seldom used.
In the Dreamtime, the Koori people have a myth about Australia's Murray River and how it was created, which involves the eucalyptus gum tree. Totyerguil was a mighty hunter and one day, having thrown all his spears and lost the huge fish he had hunted, he landed upon a river bank, where he set his canoe on end and stuck his paddle upright in the ground. The canoe became a huge gum tree and the paddle a Murray pine. It is these species of trees that the descendants of Totyerguil still use in making their canoes and paddles.
Believed to be the world's oldest wind instrument, the didgeridoo, or yidaki, is traditionally made from eucalpytus and is used by Aborigines for healing, ceremonies, initiation rites and social gatherings.
Before the biological process of the malarial mosquito's ability to spread the disease was understood, the eucalyptus blue gum was an axis of superstition. It was an Aboriginal belief that the tree released a magical essence that purified the air of fever germs - a very reasonable assumption, given the disinfectant nature of the leaves' oils emanating into the atmosphere. However, the benefit is actually derived from the capacity of the eucalyptus to absorb water from the swampy ground, culminating in the loss of suitable mosquito-breeding habitats.
One aspect of the eucalyptus's healing power is the didgeridoo as a form of vibrational medicine. It gives both psychological and physical benefits from the sound it influences the brainwaves directly and, as a result, can put the player or listener into an altered state of consciousness. Science proves that regular didgeridoo playing is an effective and well-accepted treatment for obstructive sleep apnoea. Reportedly, medical research has shown that healing with the didgeridoo aids aggressiveness, behavioural disorders, energetic blockages, hysteria, phobias, speech impediments, severe inhibitions and traumatic burdens; it also helps bone, muscle and hormone function and lowers the heart rate and blood pressure.
Although eucalyptus's properties have been renowned for more than 150 years in the Western world, the Aborigines used eucalyptus medicinally long before any colonists. Northern Aborigines crushed eucalyptus leaves as a 'sniffing' medicine, and the kino or tannin-rich 'gum' was also used by Aborigines to make an antiseptic wash for burns and skin infections. Boiled in an iron pot, kino yielded a black die used for ink and staining leather.
It was common Aboriginal knowledge that bathing in lakeside places where eucalyptus trees cast their leaves into the water offered skin-healing properties. And to treat diarrhoea, water from eucalyptus's 'manna' - made from the leaves and young bark of various eucalyptus species - was greatly valued by Bushmen and early colonists alike.
Antibacterial, anti-Candidiasis, antifungal, antimicrobial, antiseptic and antiviral, E. globulus essential oil is used for countless complaints, from halitosis and rheumatics to tuberculosis and viral infections. The lead compound, eucalyptol, is noted for its anaesthetic, analgesic, antibronchitic, anticatarrhal, antilaryngitic, stimulatory and expectorant properties, among much else. Used in aromatherapy, vaporized eucalyptus has an excellent record as an inhalant for the sinus and bronchial congestions of bronchitis, whooping cough, colds, asthma, influenza and other respiratory illnesses. The German Commission E approves the internal use of eucalyptus oil for treating catarrh (mucous) of the respiratory tract, and externally for use against bone and joint pain.
Eucalyptus oil was listed in the 1885 edition of the British Pharmacopoeia, in the British Pharmaceutical Codex of 1973 and in the British Herbal Pharmacopoeia of 1996. The oil's therapeutic uses have been integrated into traditional medicine systems, including traditional Chinese medicine, Indian Ayurvedic and Western medicine. Eucalyptus is included in the Indian Pharmacopoeia as a counter-irritant and mild expectorant; in the Chinese Pharmacopoeia as a skin irritant used in nerve pain; and in the present Ayurvedic Pharmacopoeia for its topical application for headaches due to colds.
Eucalyptus oil is contraindicated for internal use during pregnancy. Avoid it if you have high blood pressure or epilepsy. It may interact with existing prescription drugs. The oil should be diluted before internal or external use. Eucalyptus preparations should not be applied to the face, especially the nose, of infants and children.