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The Pine Family consists of more than 100 species; Scots Pine is also know as Pinus Sylvester’s is the most widespread variety and also recognised as the safest to use therapeutically. This tall evergreen conifer grows to over 35 meters in height, the crown at first conical later becoming distinctly flattened. It has deeply fissured reddish-brown bark, pairs of bluish-green needles and pointed brown cones. The tree is native to the mountainous regions of northern and western Europe and parts of Russia.

The best quality essential oil is captured from steam distillation of the needles. Pine essential oil can also be extracted from the cones, twigs and wood chippings, but the aroma is quite harsh and is not recommended for aromatherapy.

Oil that is extracted from the needles of Scots Pine is colourless to pale yellow. It has a very strong dry balsamic aroma with a camphoraceous undertone – the effect is most refreshing and cooling. It has many medical uses among which is recognised as a powerful antiseptic oil which can be added to massage blends and rubbed into arthritic joints and areas of muscular soreness, it is also used to detoxify the body through, it is effective in stream inhalations for respiratory ailments such as acute bronchitis, sinusitis, colds and the flu.

By: Lesley-Ann Sales - Utah, United States
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