Though palo santo isn’t endangered, its habitat, tropical dry forest is threatened. Bursera graveolens is not. Endangered or Not. Drawing inspiration from the role that Palo Santo played in her childhood, co-founder Sandra Manay has expanded Luna’s Palo Santo offerings to include everything from incense sticks and jewelry to essential oils . You may have seen articles claiming that palo santo is an endangered species. But with its increased popularity in recent years, the Peruvian government has been unable to enforce its policies to prevent over-harvesting of Palo Santo. Yes and no. It’s a claim that is partially true, and needs some clarification. The name “Palo Santo” or “holy wood” en Espanol is a name that has been given to two different tree species in South and Central America. We take a hard look at the facts, shine a light on a common misunderstanding, and show you how you can enjoy palo santo sustainably. For example, back in 2005, Palo Santo was listed as endangered. Is Palo Santo Endangered? Estimates are that only five to ten percent of dry tropical forests are still intact around the world,” said Susan Leopold, Ph.D., and the executive director of United Plant Savers, a conservation organization. I hold a BS in Botany and an MS in Environmental Engineering Sciences from the University of Florida. The palo santo tree is currently endangered and is on a watch-list, according to the United Plant Savers Medicinal Plant Conservation. Due to its high demand, Palo Santo is considered endangered in some parts of the world. “Dry tropical forest have been decimated. Palo Santo trees are not endangered, at least not in Peru , where the bursera graveolens species grows naturally in our dry woods and in large extensions. Be suspicious of companies selling oil (sometimes just called “holy wood oil”) for low prices over the internet today. 17928 Views 1006 Liked Posted on: 08/18/2019. The tree’s habitat is threatened by change in use, logging, farming, and urbanization. According to the United Plant Savers Medicinal Plant Conservation, there are less than 250 mature adult trees in the wild, and the numbers are rapidly declining. Products should still be ethical and sustainable. Today, Palo Santo has been added to the Convention on International Trade’s Endangered Species List due to the increased demand. One of these species, Bulnesia sarmientoi, is in danger due to over-harvesting. Palo santo, therefore, is not endangered. All these aromatic plants contain a substance called limonene. Bursera graveolens, known in Spanish as palo santo ("holy stick"), is a wild tree native from the Yucatán Peninsula to Peru and Venezuela.. Bursera graveolens is found in the seasonally dry tropical forests of Mexico, Venezuela, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and on the Galápagos Islands. Is Palo Santo Endangered? That doesn’t mean, however, that the public should freely purchase palo santo from any source or go on a buying spree. Between the destruction of our rainforests and deforestation, the number of wild Palo santo trees is dropping rapidly. It’s listed as “Least Concern” by the International Union for Conversation of Nature . Palo Santo harvesting used to be strictly controlled by law in Peru – only trees that had fallen naturally were allowed to be harvested. As you might imagine: no. how to tell if Palo Santo (sacred wood) is real? I am currently a PhD candidate at George Mason University where my research focuses on the evolution and conservation of the palo santo tree (Bursera graveolens) and of its critically endangered habitat, the seasonally dry tropical forest of Latin America. We thought it was only right to give back to a land that welcomed us with open arms and shared its culture, Palo Santo and magic. Infact buying palo santo can help this tree. Palo Santo is a member of a plant family that also includes frankincense, myrrh, and copal. It is illegal to cut down or damage live trees. Another species, namely, Bulnesia … As this article in the New York Times explains, palo santo is NOT endangered internationally. However, the growing popularity of the palo santo... Palo Santo Reforestation Project. Is Palo Santo Endangered? And at the same time make sure that we don’t overuse the other two as well. Learn More. Is Palo Santo really endangered? One of these species is endangered, the other is not. Each fallen tree is replaced with a new seedling, and logging of the trees is strictly forbidden. There can be regions with smaller populations that may list the plant’s regional conservation status as endangered at certain times. Even so, the bigger threat comes from its habitat. 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