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Tea tree oil comes from Australia, the worlds oldest continent, and a land renowned for its great biodiversity. The essential oil from the melaleuca alternifolia tree has unique and extraordinary natural healing properties. Australian Aborigines have used the crushed, oil rich leaves of the tree as a powerful, natural medicine for thousands of years. The leaves were used as a natural cure for coughs and colds. The leaves were crushed and inhaled or soaked to make an infusion. A poultice like leaf dressing was often used for sores and burns and for pain relief.