Eucalyptus globulus-Eucalyptus

Family: Myrtaceae

Names: Blue Gum, Tasmanian Blue Gum,Curly Mallee, River Red Gum, Mottlecah, Maiden’s Gum, Fever Tree, Stringy Bark Tree, Eucalyptus maidenii subsp. globulus (Labill.) J.B.Kirkp.

Eucalyptus leaves are a traditional Aboriginal medicinal herb. The essential oil found in the leaves is a powerful antiseptic and is used all over the world for relieving coughs and colds, sore throats and other infections. The essential oil is a common ingredient in many over-the-counter cold remedies. The adult leaves, without their petioles, are antiperiodic, antiseptic, aromatic, deodorant, expectorant, febrifuge, hypoglycaemic and stimulant. The leaves, and the essential oil they contain, are antiseptic, antispasmodic, expectorant, febrifuge and stimulant. Extracts of the leaves have antibacterial activity. The essential oil obtained from various species of eucalyptus is a very powerful antiseptic, especially when it is old, because ozone is formed in it on exposure to air. It has a decided disinfectant action, destroying the lower forms of life. The oil can be used externally, applied to cuts, skin infections etc, it can also be inhaled for treating blocked nasal passages, it can be gargled for sore throat and can also be taken internally for a wide range of complaints. Some caution is advised, however, because like all essential oils, it can have a deleterious effect on the body in larger doses. The oil from this species has a somewhat disagreeable odour and so it is no longer used so frequently for medicinal purposes, other members of the genus being used instead. An oleo- resin is exuded from the tree. It can also be obtained from the tree by making incisions in the trunk. This resin contains tannin and is powerfully astringent, it is used internally in the treatment of diarrhoea and bladder inflammation, externally it is applied to cuts etc. The essential oil is used in aromatherapy. Its keyword is ‘Respiratory system’.

hazardsmallCitronellal, an essential oil found in most Eucalyptus species is reported to be mutagenic when used in isolation. In large doses, oil of eucalyptus, like so many essential oils has caused fatalities from intestinal irritation. Death is reported from ingestion of 4 – 24 ml of essential oils, but recoveries are also reported for the same amount. Symptoms include gastroenteric burning and irritation, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, oxygen deficiency, ,weakness, dizziness, stupor, difficult respiration, delirium, paralysis, convulsions, and death, usually due to respiratory failure. The plant is reported to cause contact dermatitis. Sensitive persons may develop urticaria from handling the foliage and other parts of the plan. Avoid if on treatment for diabetes mellitus. Infants and small children – avoid oil preparations on faces as possible life threatening spasms. Do not use when pregnant or breast feeding.

Habitat: Victoria and Tasmania in Australia, cultivated in USA and Southern Europe etc. Damp marshy areas on moist loams and clays. Found in hilly country or moist valleys in deep rich soils.

eucalyptusDescription of Eucalyptus:

Eucalyptus globulus is an evergreen Tree growing to 55 m (180ft) by 15 m (49ft) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone 9. It is in leaf 12-Jan It is in flower from Jul to August. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Bees.

Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. Only grows in full sun. It prefers dry moist or wet soil and can tolerate drought.

Culinary uses of Eucalyptus:

Edible Parts:
Edible Uses: Condiment.

An essential oil from the fresh or dried leaves is used as a flavouring in sweets, baked goods, ice cream etc;

Collection: Leaves autumn,bark when tree has been felled.


Eucalyptus_Globulus_botanicalMedicinal uses of Eucalyptus:

Actions: Anti-microbial, anti-spasmodic, expectorant, stimulant, febrifuge.

Part Used: Leaves, and the oil distilled from them.


 King’s American Dispensatory describes the uses this plant was put to by the eclectics. Here are some relevant quotes:”Eucalyptus globulus has for a long time been known as a remedy for intermittent fever among the natives of the countries of its origin. Aside from its alleged utility in intermittents, this agent has had other virtues attributed to it, as follows: The leaves and their preparations have been successfully used as a tonic and gently stimulating stomachic, in atonic dyspepsia, and in catarrh of the stomach and typhoid fever; also advised in mucous catarrhal affections generally; in pseudo-membranous laryngitis, in asthma, with profuse secretion, and in chronic bronchitis, with or without emphysema, and in whooping-cough; it has likewise proved efficient in chronic catarrh of the bladder, where the urine is high-colored, contains an abnormal amount of mucus, or, perhaps, some purulent matter, and micturation is attended with much pain. More recently it has been recommended as a diuretic in the treatment of dropsy. Both the leaves and the oil are excitants and deodorizers, and, as such, have been successfully employed as local applications in bronchial affections with fetid expectoration, in ozena, in fetid or profuse mucous discharges, in vaginal leucorrhoea, offensive lochial discharges,gonorrhoeal dischargesindolentfetid wounds or ulcerscancerous ulcerations, in septicemia, and in gangrene. The leaves may, in some cases, be applied alone, directly to the part, in form of cataplasm; or they may be combined with other articles to form a poultice. The oil may be applied of full strength, or diluted with some other agent. In throat and pulmonary maladies, a tincture diluted, or a medicated water, may be inhaled in the form of spray; if the oil be employed, it may be dropped on some cotton placed in a small tube, from which the vapor may be inhaled. As a deodorizer, the tincture or the oil may be sprinkled or sprayed upon the offensive body, or the atmosphere of an apartment may be frequently sprayed with the same. Externally applied, the oil gives relief in some forms of neuralgic and rheumatic pains. The leaves of Eucalyptus, made up into cigars or cigarettes, and smoked, have been advised to afford relief in bronchial catarrhasthma, and other affections of the respiratory organs. The question has been asked, may not the small amount of benefit that might be derived from the minute proportion of oil remaining intact, be more than overcome, and even prove injurious, from the irritating action of the smoke and of the empyreumatic products.Eucalyptus honey, gathered by bees from Eucalyptus flowers, is quite active, and has been recommended for parasitic and putrescent conditions,gonorrhoeafevers, and catarrhal diseases. It is sedative to the heart, actively diuretic, and increases the elimination of uric acid.”

Combinations: The oil is often combined with Thymus.

Preparations & Dosage of Eucalyptus:

Infusion: may be made with 1-2 teaspoonfuls of the leaves to a cup of boiling water. Let infuse for 10-15 minutes.

Tincture: is 1 ml. three times a day.

Other uses:

Cleanser,  Deodorant,  Dye,  Essential,  Fuel,  Repellent,  Wood.

The leaves and the essential oil in them are used as an insect repellent. The trees can also be planted in wet areas where mosquitoes abound. The ground will be dried out by the trees, making it unsuitable for the mosquitoes to breed. A decoction of the leaves is used for repelling insects and vermin. Africans use finely powdered bark as an insect dust. An essential oil is obtained from the leaves. It is used in perfumery and in medicines. The yield is about 0.9% by steam distillation. The essential oil is also in spot removers for cleaning off oil and grease. Yields of 40 to 45 kilos of oil per hectare have been reported.  A yellow/brown dye is obtained from the young leaves. It does not require a mordant  Grey and green dyes are obtained from the young shoots. A dark green dye is obtained from the young bark. Wood – heavy. (or light according to another report), durable, fire resistant. An important timber species, it is used for various purposes such as carpentry, construction, fences, piles, platforms, plywood, poles, sheds, tool handles and veneer. The oil-rich wood is resistant to termites. This is one of the best eucalyptus for pulp production for making paper.

EucalyptusEsoteric uses of Eucalyptus:

Attracts healing vibrations, great for protection and healing sachets. Use to purify any space. Use dried leaves to stuff healing poppets, pillows, or sachets. Arrange a ring of dried leaves around a blue candle and burn the candle for healing vibrations. Carry in a sachet or amulet to help reconcile difficulties in a relationship, for protection, and/or to maintain health.

 The Chemistry:


  • Volatile oil, the major component of which is 1, 8-cineole (=eucalyptol), 70-85%; with terpineole, [[alpha]]-pinene, p-cymene and small amounts of sesquiterpenes such as ledol, aromadendrene and viridoflorol; aldehydes, ketones and alcohols
  • Polyphenolic acids; caffeic, ferulic, gallic, protocatechuic and others
  • Flavonoids including eucalyptin, hyperoside and rutin.

Citations from the Medline database for the genus Eucalyptus

EucalyptusArustamov AS Udalov VA [Treatment of rhinitis and rhinopharyngitis using a mixture of copper, Eucalyptus and tea]

Med Sestra 1980 Jul;37(7):38 (Published in Russian)Bohlau V Schildwachter G[Aerosol treatment of bronchitis]

ZFA (Stuttgart) 1977 Oct 31;53(30):1885-7 (Published in German)Boyd EM A review of studies on the pharmacology of the expectorants andinhalants.

Int Z Klin Pharmakol Ther Toxikol 1970 Jan;3(1):55-60Burrow A Eccles R Jones ASThe effects of camphor, eucalyptus and menthol vapour on nasal resistance to airflow and nasal sensation.

Acta Otolaryngol (Stockh) 1983 Jul-Aug;96(1-2):157-61Byers JF To douche or not to douche.

Am Fam Physician 1974 Sep;10(3):135-9Cohen BM Dressler WE Acute aromatics inhalation modifies the airways. Effects of the common cold.

Respiration 1982;43(4):285-93Demchenko P [Aerosol therapy in the complex treatment of children with chronic pneumonia]

Pediatr Akush Ginekol 1966 Mar-Apr;2:11-4 (Published in Ukrainian)Dzhanashiia NM Startsev VG [Comparative evaluation of the effect of some species of Eucalyptus and of antibiotics on peptic activity of gastric juice in monkeys]

Antibiotiki 1970 Jun;15(6):547-8 (Published in Russian) Egawa H Tsutsui O Tatsuyama K Hatta T Antifungal substances found in leaves of Eucalyptus species.

Experientia 1977 Jul 15;33(7):889-90Goldstein E Cooper AD Tarkington B Effect of inhaling medication vapors from a cold preparation on murine pulmonary bacterial defense systems.

J Toxicol Environ Health 1976 Nov;2(2):371-88Jongkees LB [Nose rinsing, gargling and steambaths]

Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd 1974 Aug 10;118(32):1227-9 (Published in Dutch)Jori A Bianchetti A Prestini PE Effect of essential oils on drug metabolism.

Biochem Pharmacol 1969 Sep;18(9):2081-5Jori A Di Salle E Pescador R On the inducing activity of eucalyptol.

J Pharm Pharmacol 1972 Jun;24(6):646-9Kachnyi GG [Use of chlorophyllpt 1 percent alcohol solution in chronic suppurative otitis media]

Zh Ushn Nos Gorl Bolezn 1977 Mar-Apr(3):85-6 (Published in Russian)Koliadenko VG Levkovskii NM Golovchenko DIa [Use of chlorophyllipt in the treatment of erosive-ulcerative skin diseases]

Vrach Delo 1976 Sep(9):121-2 (Published in Russian)Kriazheva SS Khamaganova IV [External use of eucalimine in pediatric practice]

Pediatriia 1989(8):97-8 (Published in Russian)Lacroix R Merad MR Lacroix J Schoebel MF [Broncho-pulmonary antiseptics in the traditional Algerianpharmacopeia]

Tunis Med 1973 Sep;51(5):285-92 (Published in French)Low D Rawal BD Griffin WJAntibacterial action of the essential oils of some Australian Myrtaceaewith special references to the activity of chromatographic fractions of oil of Eucalyptus citriodora.

Planta Med 1974 Sep;26(2):184-5Lysenko LV [Anti-inflammatory effect of azulene of eucalyptus oil]

Farmakol Toksikol 1967 May-Jun;30(3):341-3 (Published in Russian)Metaksa GIu Primachenko NB [Use of chlorophyllypt for treating neurotoxoplasmosis]

Vrach Delo 1979 Jul(7):111-3 (Published in Russian)Miao TJ Xiong RC The use of Chinese herbs folium ilicis chinensis decoction plus eucalyptusdistillate for preoperative preparation of intestinal tract.

J Tradit Chin Med 1984 Jun;4(2):149-52Pochinok VIa [Antibiotic substance, extracted from the leaves of the blue eucalyptus andits detoxication properties]

Farm Zh 1965;20(3):70-1 (Published in Ukrainian)Pochinok VIa [The effect of a detoxifying substance from eucalyptus leaves on the amino acid composition of diphtheria toxin]

Mikrobiol Zh 1972 Jan-Feb;34(1):7-8 (Published in Ukrainian)Rodin VI Lozitskaia VI Foderman VM [Use of chlorophilliptum in otorhinolaryngologic diseases of staphylococcaletiology]

Zh Ushn Nos Gorl Bolezn 1975 Nov-Dec(6):79-82 (Published in Russian)Shramkevych AF Sol’s’kyi IaP Rozumenko MB [Antihypoxic effect of chlorophyllypt and the method for its clinical use in maternal and fetal tissue hypoxia]

Pediatr Akush Ginekol 1979 Sep-Oct(5):55 (Published in Ukrainian)Tsvetkov VL Shevchenko NF [The use of chlorophyllypt in eye practice]

Oftalmol Zh 1972;27(8):623-4 (Published in Russian)Usenko GV [Comparative evaluation of various methods for the overall treatment of inflammatory diseases of the internal female genitalia using chlorophyllypt]

Pediatr Akush Ginekol 1974 Sep-Oct(5):57-9 (Published in Ukrainian)Vichkanova SA Dzhanashiia NM Goriunova LV [The antiviral activity of the essential oil of E. viminalis and several other frost-hardy eucalypti]

Farmakol Toksikol 1973 May-Jun;36(3):339-41 (Published in Russian)Zanker KS Tolle W Blumel G Probst J Evaluation of surfactant-like effects of commonly used remedies forcolds.

Respiration 1980;39(3):150-7