Balsam Poplar Essential Oil
Our beautiful Balsam Poplar essential oil (Populus balsamifera) is part of our Artisan Quality line of essential oils and is distilled from the buds of the Balsam Poplar tree by a small distillery in Canada. It has a sweet, resinous, woody aroma that is one of my favorites. In traditional cultures, a salve was made by infusing the buds and stems of this tree in a fatty carrier, such as animal fat or olive oil, and the resulting salve was used for bruises, sprains/strains, sore muscles and injuries to the skin, as well as for arthritis and rheumatism. Today, some aromatherapists also claim the essential oil to be a useful component in chest rubs for colds and flu.
One of the common names for Balsam Poplar (Populus balsamifera) is Balm of Gilead. So how did a North American tree get named for an ointment that was found in the Middle East? It seems that when Europeans first came to North America, the native peoples shared a balm with them as a treatment for all types of aches and pains and other discomforts. The English settlers named these healing buds “The Balm of Gilead” after the “Healing Balm of Gilead” that is mentioned in the Bible.
Balm of Gilead herbal salve was traditionally made from hand picked buds and stems of the Balsam Poplar tree. To create the healing salve today, you can use either the Balsam Poplar essential oil or make your own traditional infusion of buds and stems.
Safety Information: Follow General Safety Guidelines below. In addition, Tisserand and Young (Essential Oil Safety, 2nd Edition,2014, pg. 202) caution that Balsam Poplar essential oil should be avoided by any route of use by anyone taking drugs metabolized by CYP2D6 enzymes since there is a theoretical risk for interaction between these drugs and this essential oil. This includes quite a few medications in common use, so if you are taking any sort of medication, ask your pharmacist before using Balsam Poplar.
- Do not take essential oils internally.
- Do not apply to eyes, sensitive areas or mucous membranes.
- Do not apply undiluted to skin (for directions on proper dilution, refer to an aromatherapy text).
- The information on this website is not intended to be used in the diagnosis, treatment or mitigation of any physical or mental illness. Essential oils are not drugs and are not appropriate for treatment of illnesses.
- Pregnant women, nursing mothers and children should not use essential oils without first consulting an appropriately trained healthcare practitioner.
- The statements on this website have not been evaluated by the FDA.