Pepper Tree, Pink (Redberry) essential oil, Kenya - This oil has antibacterial and antiseptic properties, which makes it good for wounds, cuts, and sores. It is used as an antidepressant, diuretic, and menstrual disorders. Because of its insecticidal properties, it has been used as an alternative to synthetic chemicals in pest control. Finally, Pepper Tree oil helps with toothaches and rheumatism.
Name: Pepper Tree, Pink (Redberry) oil, Kenya
Species: Schinus molle L., fam. Anacardiaceae
- Has antibacterial and antiseptic properties, good for wounds, cuts, and sores.
- Also used as an antidepressant, diuretic, and menstrual disorders.
- Because of its insecticidal properties, it has been used as an alternative to synthetic chemicals in pest control.
- Helps with toothaches and rheumatism.
Pepper Tree Essential Oil - Also known as Mastic, Escobilla, False Pepper, Pirul, and Peppercorn Tree.
Pepper trees (or Brazilian Pepper trees) belong to the sumac family and are related to poison ivy. Their distinctive red berries which ripen in December and January delight birds and give the tree the name "Florida Holly," although it actually hails from the South American rainforest where it is harvested for its medicinal properties according to Reannan Raine ("Brazilian Rainforest Plants and Climate"). These trees grow as far North as Flagler Beach, like sandy soil and hammocks, and tend to displace the natives there. Growth is rapid with blooms in Fall.
Pepper tree berries have a flavor similar to pepper, and the dried (but not the fresh) berries are edible. They are used in McCormick's "Peppercorn mélange" according to floridagardener.com. The tannins in the sap make it an excellent anti-inflammatory medicine – although because the tree is a member of the sumac family persons allergic to sumacs may develop a rash. The tree has antimicrobial properties as well. Finally, according to Raintree Nutrition, it is a good source of steroidal saponins. Steroidal saponins may be useful to the body in developing its own steroids to stimulate growth and healing including healing from burns. Steroidal saponins have not been associated with ill effects.
Not related to the true pepper, the fruit of the Pepper Tree is bright pink and often sold as “pink peppercorns.”
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