Bureseru microphylla, better known as the "elephant tree," is the source of Copal oro pieces. copal oro pieces are not an herb, but rather a type of resin derived from the sap of this tree, which is native to the desert regions Northern Mexico and the Southwestern U.S.
In the language of the Nahuatl Indians, the word kopali means "incense." Copal oro pieces were indeed used in the religious rites of Mexico's indigenous peoples, including the Mayans, the Mexica, the Aztecs and more. Shamans burned dried copal oro pieces just as if they were dried herbs, and then inhaled the smoke in order to commune with their gods.
copoal oro pieces are not necessarily like herbs that are taken internally. Traditionally, copal oro pieces were used in folk dentistry for filling cavities. It is also used as a medicinal herb by the Guarani Indians of Brazil.
When burned outdoors, whole copal oro pieces give off a resinous smell that is pleasant to humans, but repellent to insect pests, and is therefore an environmentally-friendly alternative to chemical bug sprays or potentially irritating (even if organic) herbs like citronella. Sliced copal oro pieces can be melted down and used as a non-toxic adhesive for broken pottery as well.