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Chemical composition of essential oils of eucalyptus from Benin: Eucalyptus citriodora and E. camaldulensis. Influence of location, harvest time, storage of plants and time of steam distillation



Chemical composition of essential oils of eucalyptus from Benin: Eucalyptus citriodora and E. camaldulensis. Influence of location, harvest time, storage of plants and time of steam distillation



Journal of essential oil research: JEOR 11(1): 109-118



The yields of essential oils obtained from dried leaves of Eucalyptus citriodora and E. camaldulensis ranged according to the location between 2.3% and 5.9% for E. citriodora and between 0.6% and 1.4% for E. camaldulensis. Twenty-eight components were identified by GC/MS. In E. citriodora and E. camaldulensis, 90% of the isolated oils were obtained after one hour distillation and they contained maximal amounts of citronellal (75%) for E. citriodora oil and 1,8-cineole (47-71%) for E. camaldulensis oil. At longer isolation times further quantities of oils collected became negligible and the proportions of the main constituents fell significantly. The chemical composition of the oils of E. citriodora and E. camaldulensis obtained from plants located in the economically most relevant areas of Benin depended on location and harvesting time. The effects of these two parameters are different for the two oils. An oil of E. citriodora rich in citronellal (> 75%) could be obtained throughout the year with a yield of 5% at Calavi, while even at the best time (June to August) the yield of oil was only 2.5% at Ketou. For E. camaldulensis, the best yield was approximatively 1.3% at Calavi (February-March) and Ketou (April-May). The Seme-Ekpe location afforded an oil with a high level of 1,8-cineole (70%) with highest yield in February-March. The Calavi location was exploitable only during that period.

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