A native to the mountains of western South Africa, Buchu, as it is commonly known, gives up its leaves to produce an essential oil, Buchu oil. The oil glands are located within the leaves and, when distilled, produce a rue/peppermint-like aroma and essential oil. The essential oil also has an earthy and medicinal note.
Although Buchu essential oil has several benefits, it should be used with care, as too much can cause toxicity.
Common English Name: Buchu. Also known as Round Buchu.
Botanical Name: Agasthoma betulina. Previously known by the name Barosma betulina.
Plant Family: Rutaceae.
Method of Extraction: Steam distillation of the leaves.
Origin: Western South Africa.
Plant Description: A small, evergreen shrub with white or pale pink flowers. It has pale green, glossy, leathery leaves.
Main Chemical Components: High in pulegone (monoterpene).
Uses: Uneven, bumpy skin, to soothe skin.
Fun Fact: The leaves of the plant are used by natives on their bodies as a perfume.
Cautions for Use: Avoid use in pregnancy. Avoid use with babies and young children. Avoid in cases of kidney disease and inflammation. High risk of toxicity in large doses.