Creative Uses for Eucalyptus Leaves for Home and Health

I have a serious problem.  One that has me looking for uses for eucalyptus leaves and considering buying a koala bear.  What is this problem I speak of?  Well, I can’t seem to go into a garden nursery without buying every weird plant that I come across!  Seriously.  One year I bought tarragon even though we had never used tarragon before. And apparently it is a perennial and now I have enough tarragon to outfit a small nation.

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Last year I bought a eucalyptus plant and now I am wondering what to do with eucalyptus leaves.  Because apparently this thing grows into a rather large bush and I may end up with a whole lot of fresh eucalyptus leaves! Well, if you are looking for a few creative uses for eucalyptus leaves, here are some that I have come across so far.

I think I might need a whole bunch more ideas if this plant grows to the size I think it will.  Or maybe my husband won’t notice if I bring home a pet koala bear…..

Creative Uses for Eucalyptus Leaves for Home and Health

How many different species of eucalyptus are there?

There are more than 700 species of eucalyptus and most are native to Australia. A few of them can be grown in the backyard garden or even indoors, depending  on where you live.  In the wild, it can get rather large.  For the home gardener, however, eucalyptus is generally trimmed back regularly so that it stays fairly small. Eucalyptus ‘Silver Drop’ is fantastic in the garden or in arrangements.

Creative Uses for Eucalyptus Leaves

First things first:  If you have a lot of fresh eucalyptus leaves, you can dry them in a dehydrator and store them for later use.  You don’t have to use fresh eucalyptus leaves for all of these suggestions.   If you don’t have any fresh eucalyptus, you can buy dried eucalyptus instead.

Natural Spider Repellent:

If you want to get rid of spiders naturally, make a sachet out of dried eucalyptus leaves for your cupboards and drawers. Since I am not a huge fan of spiders, I was happy to find this when searching for uses for eucalyptus!  Tuck your eucalyptus leaves into mesh drawstring bags and place them in cupboards.

Eucalyptus Herbal tea: 

One of the medicinal uses for eucalyptus is the use of it to break up chest congestion.  Make eucalyptus tea with 1/4 tsp of dried, crumbled eucalyptus leaves in paper tea bags and infuse it in a cup of boiling water.   Steep for 10 minutes and drink.

Other Herbal Tea Posts You Might Enjoy

Fight headaches and congestion with steam:

Adding fresh or dried eucalyptus leaves to a pot of simmering water can help break up congestion and fight headache when used as a steam facial.  Remove the hot water from the stove, add a handful of leaves and put your head over it with a towel over you to create a small ‘tent’.  Breath deeply and relax. This is a great way to survive a cold!

Eucalyptus Massage oil:

Eucalyptus massage oil is a great way to treat arthritis, sores and wounds.  To make a soothing eucalyptus oil for achy joints or irritated skin, fill a glass jar with eucalyptus leaves and poor olive oil over it.  Set it on a sunny windowsill for a few weeks.  Strain out the leaves and the oil should smell strongly of eucalyptus.

You can use this oil to relieve achy joints or use it as a homemade vapor rub to combat congestion. A glass jar with pump adapter will make it easy to dispense during your massage session.  You can also use eucalyptus oil in homemade vapor rub to help soothe cough and congestion.

DIY Insect Repellent: 

Make the oil above and rub into the skin to provide natural protection from insect bites.

Bathtub teabags original

Make Linen Sachets:

Just like cedar sachets, eucalyptus sachets provide a nice smell and keep away bugs.  Here are some tips for making linen sachets.  You will have to dry the eucalyptus leaves first.  Add other dried ingredients like orange peels or dried flowers, depending on your personal preferences.

Homemade Potpourri:

Dry eucalyptus leaves in a dehydrator.  Use dried eucalyptus in homemade potpourri.  You can add dried peppermint, spearmint or citrus peels to your homemade potpourri which all add a wonderful fresh smell to the air.

PLEASE NOTE:  Eucalyptus oil should not be taken by mouth or applied to the skin full-strength. It must be diluted for safety. Check out WebMD for all precautions associated with fresh eucalyptus and eucalyptus oil.

How to Grow Eucalyptus

If you need tips on how to grow eucalyptus, check out the video below from Carrie’s Gardening Channel

Have you found any other uses for eucalyptus leaves?


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About Diane

Diane has a Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology with a Minor in Health Management and Policy. She spent many years working in cancer research, academics, and biotechnology. Concern over the growing incidence of human disease and the birth of her children led her to begin living a more natural life. She quickly realized that the information she was learning along the way could be beneficial to many others and started blogging as a way to share this knowledge with others. While passionate about health and the environment she can't quite give up her favorite Cheetos and Diet Coke!

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