Author: Jan Scholten
Names: Boldo fragrans, Peumus Boldus, Peumus fragrans, Boldea fragrans, Ruizia fragrans, Laurelia aromatica.
English: Laurel de Chile; Boldo.
Source: Joaquin Catala, Laureano Olivera, Eduardo Fornias.
Genus: 1 species.
Region: south America, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, Paraguay.
Habitat: sclerophyllous forest endemic to central Chile.
Content: ascaridole; boldine: aromatic stimulant, bitter, hypnotic, local anaesthetic; boldoglucin (C30H52O8), hypnotic and narcotic, excite the biliary function and provoke sleep burning in the stomach, vomiting, purging; boldo and boldoglucin, excite the biliary function and provoke sleep; boldo in high becomes toxic, producing burning in the stomach, vomiting, purging.
Use: bark for tanning, perfume wine casks; wood for charcoal; seeds as food; in teas; leaves have slightly bitter soft flavor, a bit coniferous rough taste when brewed in tea; leaves as a culinary herb to spike many savory dishes with fish, mushrooms, vegetables and as a component in sauces; leaves to wrap frying fish and meat; fruits, when dried, are used to make spicy condiments.
Leaves: opposite; short pistils; coraceous; ± 5 cm long; broadly oval or oval-oblong, very obtuse at the apex; entire or somewhat undulate on the margin; numerous glands upon their surfaces; rough on both sides, glossy above and pale and hairy beneath; reddish-brown when dry; fragrant of a refreshing, aromatic, pungent taste, strong, woody, slightly bitter flavor, camphor-like aroma.
Fruits: small, green, edible spheres; very tasty, nutritious.