Essential Oil Plant Families - A Quick Guide with Cheat Sheets

Essential Oil Plant Families - A Quick Guide with Cheat Sheets

Have you ever thought about essential oil plant families? It is yet another way to learn about and understand your oils better.

Essential oils in the same plant families (also called botanical families) have similar characteristics and therapeutic properties.

Knowing plant families can help when you need to find an oil substitute, just look at the plant family and see what other oils you can use instead!

As a general rule of thumb, essential oils from the same botanical family tend to blend well together. This can be helpful when making DIY Recipes and Essential Oil Blends.

Essential Oil Plant Families

Here are some of the common plant families used in aromatherapy, including essential oils from each.

Apiaceae

Commonly known as the umbellifer family. These oils are balancing to the digestive system. Example: Fennel, Dill.

Asteraceae (Compositae)

Commonly known as the aster or daisy family. These diverse oils tend to be antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and soothing to the skin and the digestive system. Example: Roman and German Chamomile.

Burseraceae

Commonly known as the torchwood family. These oils have expectorant properties and tend to be healing to wounds and ulcers, reducing scar tissue. Also assist with emotional balance. Example: Myrrh, Frankincense.

Cupressaceae

Commonly known as the cypress family. These oils assist with stress, insomnia, and nervous tension. They have astringent properties and may reduce cellulite. Example: Cypress, Juniper Berry.

Fabaceae

Commonly known as the legume or pea family. These essential oils are distilled from tree resin and frequently used for respiratory problems and in skin care. Example: Copaiba.

Lamiaceae (Labiatae)

Commonly known as the mint family. Many of the plants are aromatic and include widely used culinary herbs. This is the largest oil producing family. These calming and strengthening oils are supportive of the digestive and respiratory systems.

Laurenceae

Commonly known as the laurel family. These oils tend to be warming and stimulating, they also have strong antifungal properties. Supportive to the circulatory, immune, and respiratory system.

Myrataceae

Commonly known as the myrtle family. These powerful healing oils are highly antiseptic and are particularly useful on the respiratory and immune system.

Pinaceae

Commonly known as the pine family. These restorative oils are highly antiseptic and effective on respiratory disorders. They are also calming on the nervous system.

Poaceae (Gramineae)

Commonly called the grass family. The oils in this family tend to be grounding and strengthening. Used for stimulation of the digestive system, disinfection, and for pest and parasite control.

Rutaceae

Commonly known as the rue or citrus family. These refreshing oils are uplifting and supportive of the nervous and immune system.

Zingiberaceae

Commonly known as the ginger family. These warming oils are supportive of the digestive system.

List of Essential Oils In Each Plant Family

 

 Plant Family

Essential Oils

Apiaceae

  • Coriander
  • Dill
  • Fennel
  • Carrot Seed
  • Anise
  • Caraway
  • Angelica Root
  • Cumin
  • Cilantro

Asteraceae (Compositae)

  • Roman Chamomile
  • German Chamomile
  • Helichrysum
  • Goldenrod
  • Blue Tansy

Burseraceae

  • Myrrh
  • Elemi
  • Opopanax
  • Frankincense
  • Palo Santo

Cupressaceae

  • Cypress
  • Juniper Berry
  • Cedarwood Virginian
  • Arborvitae

Fabaceae

  • Copaiba
  • Peru Balsam

Lamiaceae (Labiatae)

  • Lavender
  • Patchouli
  • Rosemary
  • Peppermint
  • Sweet Marjoram
  • Clary Sage
  • Basil
  • Melissa
  • Thyme
  • Bergamot Mint
  • Oregano
  • Spearmint

Laurenceae

  • Cinnamon (bark and leaf)
  • Rosewood
  • Litsea
  • Camphor
  • Cassia
  • Ravintsara
  • Ravensara
  • Laurel Leaf
  • May Chang

Myrataceae

  • Tea Tree
  • Eucalyptus (all types)
  • Clove Bud
  • Cajeput
  • Niaouli
  • Allspice

Pinaceae

  • Douglas Fir
  • Silver Fir
  • Cedarwood Himalyan
  • Cedarwood Atlas
  • Hemlock
  • Scotch Pine
  • Black Spruce
  • Balsam Fir

Poaceae (Gramineae)

  • Citronella
  • Vetiver
  • Palmarosa
  • Gingergrass
  • Lemongrass

Rutaceae

  • Bergamot
  • Lemon
  • Sweet Orange
  • Neroli
  • Amyris
  • Tangerine
  • Clementine
  • Grapefruit
  • Lime
  • Mandarin
  • Yuzu

Zingiberaceae

    • Cardamom
    • Ginger

     

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    Reference Books:

    Authentic Aroma by Sharon Falsetto

    Essential Oil Safety 2nd Edition by Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young

    Jennifer Lane

    Hello, I'm Jennifer, Founder of Loving Essential Oils. I have a passion for natural health and aromatherapy. I love making DIY products to replace store bought items and strive for a chemical and toxin free home. I enjoy using aromatherapy and essential oils every day to keep my family and myself healthy and happy. My hope is to help you do the same.

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