Despite its common name, Lemon Tea Tree is not in the Tea Tree genus, which is Melaleuca. Instead, it’s part of the Leptospermum family, Leptospermum petersonii to be exact. Leptospermum is also the family of Manuka, which I wrote about earlier this year. (In case you missed it, click on the link.) Even though it’s not related, it has a similar ability to fight bacteria as Tea Tree.
It is well known for its wonderful lemony aroma.
This oil’s claim to fame is as an excellent insect repellent. While many essential oils with insect repellant properties are only effective against a short list of bugs, Lemon Tea Tree seems to be effective against a wide array of the little buggers. (Pun absolutely intended.)
In the emotional realm, it can be helpful for anxiety, depression, nervous tension, and stress.
Most people say that Lemon Tea Tree can stand on its own for whatever purpose you put it to. However, for those who like a little depth to their scents why not try blending it with:
Lemon Tea Tree is high in citral which is a skin irritant and sensitizer. Using this topically or internally during pregnancy and breast feeding can have a negative effect on tooth and bone development. There don’t appear to be any harmful effects from inhalation, i.e. using it in a diffuser. Here’s a great article that’ll give you more detail about the effects of citral, dilutions you can safely use it at, and a list of other high citral oils. Use no more than 4 drops per ounce of carrier oil (0.7%) if you’re going to apply it to your body.
*Say that 10 times fast!
One distiller of Lemon Tea Tree reports that they have some farmers who buy all of their distillate water (the water that comes off with, but separates from, the oil) to keep their dogs free of fleas. They also say it clears up mange skin problems. Wow! Too bad distillate water is in much shorter supply than the essential oil. Also, too bad you probably have to know a distiller to get your hands on some.