Malagueta or eucalyptus

Is it Malagueta or Eucalyptus?

In Puerto Rico, Malagueta is mistakenly called Eucalyptus. With the leaves of the Malagueta we prepare Alcoholado. However, it is very rare to see the Eucalyptus (Globulus) in Puerto Rico. Learn more about Malagueta and how to identify it


What is Malagueta?

Malagueta tree in Puerto Rico pimenta racemosaMalagueta, also known as West Indian Bay, is a fairly common tree in Puerto Rico. It is grown for ornamental purposes or for using its aromatic leaves to make Alcoholado.


How do I identify it?

Malagueta grows up to 40 feet tall. It has a smooth trunk that comes off in strips like the Guava tree. You’re easily identifying it by the characteristic smell of alcolado when you crush the leaves in your hand. The aroma is composed of terpenes and has a clove-like fragrance. The leaves have a dark green color with a semi-bright tone.


More about Malagueta

branch of the Malagueta tree The Malagueta tree is native to the Antilles. It belongs to the botanical family of the Myrtecae, a relative of guava and pepper. It is called West Indian Bay and its scientific name is Pimenta Racemosa. It blooms during winter and spring, fruits usually ripen during summer and autumn.

In addition, there is a variety of Malagueta with a refreshing lemon aroma.

A very close cousin of malagueta is the Pimienta Dulce tree (Pimenta dioica). It is known by many names such as Allspice, Jamaican Pepper and Pimienta Guayabita. Malagueta seeds are toxic but Allspice seeds are used as a seasoning in the kitchen.


¿ What’s it for?


Bottles of alcohol ready to add malagueta leaves prepared by caribbean soaps made in Puerto RicoIn Puerto Rico, its leaves are used to prepare a traditional remedy for pains called Alcoholado  Alcolado or Bay Rum. It is a mixture of alcohol, Malagueta leaves and natural extracts such as menthol and eucalyptus. It is used locally to relieve fever, muscle aches, insect bites and more. The best known commercial brand is Alcoholado Superior 70.

Essential Oil

The essential oil, also called Bay Rum, is distilled from the leaves of the Malagueta tree. The oil has a very long shelf life. It is a fairly complex compound, with over 23 components. Making it difficult to synthesize in the lab. The island of Dominica is one of the largest exporters of the oil.

Bay Rum from the island of DominicaEssential oil is used for the manufacture of soaps, after shave and colonies such as “Bay Rum”.

“Bay Rum” is an after shave for men that is made from a combination of Malagueta oil, citrus oils and spices, alcohol and water.


St John cologne with bay rum made in United Staes virgin islandsThe St. John’s Bay Rum is a cologne made in the American Virgin Islands for more than 70 years. It is prepared with a combination of Malagueta oil, eucalyptus, cloves and Caribbean spices creating a very popular masculine essence.



What is Eucalyptus?

globulus eucalyptus tree with Australian koala
Find the Koala in the eucalyptus tree!

The first thing that comes to mind is that it’s the Koalas’ favorite food. Second, the smell of Vick’s Vaporub.

Eucalyptus is one of the most popular oil in aromatherapy.

The oil is obtained from the leaves of a specific variety of eucalyptus. The scientific name for this variety is Eucalyptus Globulus. It is a tree native to Australia. But, it is very rare to see this species of Eucalyptus in Puerto Rico.

globulus eucalyptus small tree in Puerto RicoThe tree that normally grows to a height of 140 feet. The bark is usually smooth, white to cream. Just like Malagueta you can easily identify it by characteristic Vick’s odor when you crush the leaves in your hand.


More about the Eucalyptus

There are more than 900 different varieties that exist of Eucalyptus. They are fast growing and have a long life. We can find eucalyptus trees all over the world.

In Puerto Rico you will find some varieties of Eucalyptus.

Eucalyptus Deglupta

eucalyptus robusta tree in Puero Rico
Eucalyptus Deglupta

You identify it by its attractive rainbow-like multicolored bark. The eucalyptus deglupta is a large tree that can reach 200 feet in height, with trunk up to 6 feet in diameter. In Puerto Rico, it is grown for ornamental use.


Eucalyptus Roubusta

The Eucalyptus Robusta is a large tree, up to 125 feet tall with a wide trunk up to 3 feet in diameter. The bark is thick with deep cracks.

Eucalyptus Cinerea

Eucalyptus cinerea silver dollar in puerto ricoThe tree has round, fragrant, bluish-grey leaves. The cut stems are ideal for floral arrangements, wreaths and for decoration.


What’s it for?

essential oils for aromatherapy 1 ounce prepared by caribbean soaps made in puerto ricoEssential Oil

Eucalyptus essential oil is one of the most well-known and used oils in the world. We use it for nasal congestion as the “Vicks” and when we are sore. That’s why Eucalyptus essential oil should be part of your first aid kit.

Handcrafted Soaps and Bath Products

artisanal soap eucalyptus and rosemary made in puerto rico by caribbean soaps 4.25 ouncesEucalyptus is widely used for its properties to relieve nasal congestion and muscle aches.

It is used to make handmade soaps,bath gel, massage oils and bath salts.


It is used in the industry for its wood, and crushed to produce paper.


In Summary

You know how to identify Malagueta’s tree. Now you can find it and benefit from its multiple medicinal uses.


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