Eucalyptus smithii species
From the Myrtaceae family and native to Australia.
There are over 700 species of Eucalyptus of which fewer than 20 have been exploited commercially, many of them outside Australia. Eucalyptus Smithii is commonly known as ‘gully gum’ or ‘white iron bark’ and also Smith’s gum after H G Smith, Australia’s foremost pioneer of eucalyptus essential oil.
This species is widely grown in southern Africa where the leaves are harvested for oil production. The part of the plant used is fresh or partially dried leaves and the oil is extracted by steam distillation.
The name comes from the Greek word ‘eucalyptos’ meaning ‘well covered’ because the flower buds are covered with a cup like membrane which is thrown off as the flower expands
The xpectorant activity of Eucalyptus oil may be directly traced to the 1,8-cineole which has the property of reducing the swelling of mucous membranes and of loosening phlegm, thus making breathing easier. Traditionally eucalyptus is one of the most valuable oils for treating the respiratory system Non toxic, non irritant and non sensitising.
If taken internally Eucalyptus oil is toxic.