Type of plant: Broadleaf evergreen tree growing to 100 feet with rough bark, glossy, fragrant leaves, a profusion of white flowers, and black berries
Part used: Leaves
Method of extraction: Steam distillation
Data: The large, glossy, leathery leaves are hand picked and distilled within a day. Ravintsara was introduced into Madagascar in the mid-twentieth century from Taiwan. It now grows wild in the rain forests of Madagascar or is cultivated. Despite the botanical name of Cinnamomum camphora, the essential oil from Madagascar has very little camphor within it, instead having a high percentage of 1,8-cineol, between 40% and 65%. Ravintsara has the same botanical name as ho wood, but ho wood oil is completely different, having a very low percentage of 1,8-cineol and instead having a very high percentage of linalool.
Principal place of production: Madagascar
When buying look for: A colorless to pale-yellow liquid with a strongly herbaceous aroma. Although the aroma is quite similar to saro essential oil, the two have different properties.
Therapeutic properties: Anthelmintic, antibacterial, anticatarrhal, antifungal, anti-infectious, antiseptic, antiviral, expectorant, immunostimulant, mucolytic
Therapeutic uses: Bronchitis, bronchial congestion, colds, sinusitis, rhinitis, excess mucus, laryngitis, viral respiratory infection, viral infection, herpes, shingles, general fatigue
Blends well with: Bay laurel, bergamot, black pepper, cardamom, cedarwood, cypress, eucalyptus radiata, fragonia, frankincense, geranium, ginger, ho wood, hyssop decumbens, lavender, lavender (spike), lemon, manuka, myrtle, niaouli, oregano, palmarosa, ravensara, rosemary, tea tree, thyme linalol
Precautionary advice: Best avoided during pregnancy and while breast-feeding.