No products in the basket.
The Neem Tree
What is Neem and why should be keen to find out more?
The word Neem is unfamiliar to most of us in the West but the Neem tree has been recognised for its wide range of uses and benefits for thousands of years in those subtropical countries in which it originallygrew, on the Indian subcontinent, in China and Malaysia.
The Neem tree, Azadirachta Indica is a member of the mahogany family which thrives in subtropical climates.
Its name is thought to derive from the Persian for “noble tree “, Azad darakht, indicating its value. Other names include Indian lilac, the “Wonder tree” and even “The Village Pharmacy “for its perceived health benefits.
It is now grown all over the world as a crop, mainly for its Azadirachtin content, a complex chemical which is being promoted as a nontoxic insecticide and it has escaped cultivation to now grow wild in regions as diverse as Australia, Puerto Rico and Kenya.
It is a semi-evergreen broadleaf tree which grows to about 15 m in height, producing small white sweet smelling flowers and stone fruits which look like olives with a pointed tip.
It’s not all about the Oil:
When Neem is mentioned in the West we immediately think of Neem oil but this is because the full range of uses for the Neem tree have never been explored outside its countries of origin.
Every part of the neem tree is valued in India and Pakistan including the bark, leaves, fruit and the oil extracted from the seeds.
The Ayurvedic tradition prizes the Neem tree and its components particularly highly and gives detailed instructions as to their use.
Fresh bark, bark powder or bark extract are used and taken orally to help with coughing, reducing fever, loss of appetite, gut parasites and fatigue many other ailments.
Bunches of twigs are sold to be chewed to freshen breath and work as a toothbrush.
It reportedly tastes bitter and astringent with a pungent odour and imparts a cooling sensation when chewed.
The leaves can be crushed and Neem tea is recommended for a truly impressive list of benefits including for detox regimes, chickenpox relief when added to bathwater and for maintenance of digestive health.
Although most focus is on the seeds extracted from the fruit, the fruit is itself used both as a purgative and in the management of haemorrhoids.
In the West Neem oil, extracted from the seeds, is the most frequently encountered Neem derivative. It is brown in colour, solid under 24 degrees C and has a strong characteristic odour described as resembling, onions, garlic or sulphur.
It is bitter tasting and not usually consumed outside the Indian subcontinent where it is regarded as being highly medicinal. For humans and animals.
Its insecticidal and insect repellent properties are rapidly propelling it to the forefront of research into non toxic agricultural practices.
“Neem “and its place in the Future:
In summary, there is much more to “ Neem “ than we in the West currently appreciate and as a plant the Neem tree has potential to step forward as a very important part of subtropical economies with global benefits.
Undoubtedly “Neem “is a word we will be hearing much more in the future.
Suitable for Whole family instead of liquid washes and harsh ordinary soaps. Ideal for extra dry skin, rough skin, itchy and flaky skin. Also used as all over body wash, ultra-gentle and rich in oils, highly valued as a moisturizing cleanser for keratosis pilaris, eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis. Gentle hand wash for people who wash their hands frequently. With regular use the moisturising, conditioning Neem Bar replaces the skin’s natural oils leaving the skin supple, smooth and conditioned