Type of plant: Bushy evergreen shrub-like tree growing to 15 feet high with fragrant leathery leaves, white flowers with tufts of white stamens, and bluish-black berries
Part used: Leaves, twigs, and flowers
Method of extraction: Steam distillation
Data: The myrtle grown in the French island of Corsica is known as green myrtle. A favorite garden plant due to its aromatic leaves. The essential oil is used in medicines, skin preparations, perfumes, aftershaves, and as food flavouring. Myrtle has long had a reputation as an aphrodisiac, being variously associated with weddings, sexual potency, and marital happiness from Roman times to the present day, from the Levant to Scandinavia.
Principal places of production: France, Tunisia, Morocco, Spain
When buying look for: A pale-yellow to golden-amber liquid with a fresh, sweet, peppery, herbaceous, camphorous aroma
Therapeutic properties: Antibacterial, anticatarrhal, antiviral, astringent, expectorant, pectoral, regenerative, restorative, soporific, stimulant, tonic
Therapeutic uses: Bronchitis, sinus infection, laryngitis, bronchial infection, coughs, colds, cystitis, urinary tract infection, heavy legs, insomnia, tired all the time, skin disorders, psoriasis, acne, pimples, boils, parasitic infection, head lice, mite bites, emotional, mental, and physical exhaustion
Blends well with: Basil linalol, bergamot, black pepper, chamomile roman, cistus, eucalyptus lemon, eucalyptus radiata, frankincense, geranium, ginger, hyssop decumbens, immortelle, lavandin, lavender, lemon, lemongrass, mandarin, niaouli, orange (sweet), petitgrain, rosemary, spruce, thyme linalol
Precautionary advice: Best avoided during pregnancy and while breast-feeding. Best avoided if using multiple medications.