From the myrtle family (Myrtaceae), Eucalyptus L'Héritier 1789 is a diverse genus of flowering trees and shrubs. Members of this genus are dominant in Australia and include Eucalyptus regnans, which is the tallest known flowering plant on Earth. The indigenous people of Australia have used eucalyptus oil for centuries to relieve everything from common aches and pains to cold and flu symptoms.
There are more than 700 species of eucalyptus growing in the world, with the vast majority grown in Australia. The first production of eucalyptus essential oil began in 1852 in Victoria, Australia. By the turn of the 20th century, it was well established and eucalyptus oil was being exported to many countries. Over the next 50 years, this distinctively Australian industry was the major supplier of eucalyptus oil all over the world.
The oil is extracted by steam distillation, which separates the essential oil from the dried eucalyptus leaves. That extracted oil is used in countless health-related treatments and products.
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