Manuka Essential Oil

Type of plant: Hardy, fast-growing shrub growing to 12 feet high with prickly leaves and small, whitish-pink flowers with a deep pinkish-red center.

Part used: Leaves and end branches

Method of extraction: Steam distillation

Data: Manuka, a plant native to New Zealand, is becoming known internationally as a very useful essential oil. It’s distilled from both wild and cultivated bushes. In the wild it often grows alongside kanuka, and the plant materials should be separated before distillation into the two essential oils. All parts of the bush have been used by the Maori people as an important part of their indigenous medicinal system. Manuka is said to be the original tea tree; Captain James Cook wrote that it “has a very agreeable bitter taste and flavor when [the leaves] are recent, but loses some of both when they are dried.”

Principal places of production: New Zealand, Australia

When buying look for: A clear to pale-yellow liquid with an earthy, slightly sweet, balsamic, camphorous aroma

Therapeutic properties: Analgesic, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antiseptic, cytophylactic, expectorant, immunostimulant, spasmolytic, vulnerary

Therapeutic uses: Bronchial infection, bronchitis, catarrh, coughs, influenza, skin infection, wounds, cuts, grazes, contusions, ulceration, Helicobacter pylori, fungal skin infection, athlete’s foot, parasitic infection, ringworm, mites, head lice, scabies

Blends well with: Basil, bergamot, cedarwood, chamomile german, chamomile roman, cypress, eucalyptus peppermint, eucalyptus radiata, fragonia, lavender, lavender (spike), lemon, mastic, niaouli, oregano, peppermint, pine, rosemary, spruce, tea tree, thyme linalol

Precautionary advice: No contraindications known