Gaia Herbs | plant intelligence



Myrtle is a small aromatic evergreen shrub native to North Africa and the Mediterranean region.  It has a long history of use dating to ancient Greece and is associated with marriage fidelity, love and protection. It is reported to be a sacred plant of Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love.  The leaves and berries are used in Mediterranean and North African food as a spice.  It is in the same plant family as Tea Tree and Eucalyptus, and it was used in traditional medicine to support respiratory health and promote healthy veins and circulation of the lower GI tract.*


The leaves are rich in essential oils, which are the main active constituents in Myrtle. 
Modern European herbalists use Myrtle to support normal lung function, and the essential oil is often found in children’s cough syrup.* This herb also provides antioxidant support.*

Uses of Myrtle


This information in our Herbal Reference Guide is intended only as a general reference for further exploration, and is not a replacement for professional health advice. This content does not provide dosage information, format recommendations, toxicity levels, or possible interactions with prescription drugs. Accordingly, this information should be used only under the direct supervision of a qualified health practitioner such as a naturopathic physician.

Active Constituents

monoterpenes:  alpha pinene, 1,8-cineole, linalool, linalyl acetate, myrtenol

Parts Used

  • essential oil

Important precautions

Additional Resources

Aleksic V, Knezevic P.  Microbiological Research 169(2014): 240-254.
Alipour G, Dashti S, Hosseinzadeh H.  Review of pharmacological effects of Myrtus communis L. and its active constituents.  Phytother Res. 2014 Aug;28(8):1125-36.
Bouzabata A, Cabral C, Gonçalves MJ, Cruz MT, et al.  Myrtus communis L. as source of a bioactive and safe essential oil.  Food Chem Toxicol. 2015 Jan;75:166-72.

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