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Extraction of Essential Oils

 

Buchu oil is mainly extracted by steam distillation of the leaves and stems. Also vacuum distillation and critical CO extraction.
 

Buchu Oil Types

  • A. betulina
    Golden in colour
    Isomenthone chemo type minty odour
    Diosphenol chemo type catty note with black current
     
  • A. crenulata
    Paler in colour with a sharper pulegone note (Hepatotoxin)

Main Chemical Components

  • A. betulina
    • Isomenthone chemo type
      • Limonene, menthone , isomenthone, pulegone, mercapto- menthone
      • Major component Isomenthone usually 35 55%
         
    • Diosphenol chemo type
      • Limonene, menthone, isomenthone, pulegone, diosphenol, mercapto-menthone
      • Major component Diosphenol usually 25 50%
         
  • A. crenulata
    • Limonene, menthone, isomenthone, pulegone, acelthio- menthone
    • Major component Pulegone usually 30 70%

Properties of Buchu Oil

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • antiseptic
  • carminative disinfectant
  • diuretic
  • insecticide
  • stimulant
  • tonic

 

Major Components of the three Oils

Component Crenulata Isomenthone Chemotype Diosphenol Chemotype
Alpha Pinene 0.8 0.6 0.7
Beta Pinene 0.5 0.2 0.8
Sabinene 0.8 1.6 0.2
Myrcene 1.0 1.6 1.3
Limonene 7.5 17.2 14.7
1.8 Cineole 0.8 0.5 0.4
Beta-Ocimene 0.7 0.7 0.5
Menthone 2.8 16.3 9.5
Isomenthone 9.0 39.0 25.1
Trans-iso Pulegone 3.0 7.9 2.5
Cis-iso Pulegone 3.0 0.7 0.3
Pulegone 58.4 4.5 1.7
Pseudo Diosphenol trace 0.9 16.5
Diosphenol trace 1.1 19.6
Trans-8-mercapto-p-menthan 0.8 0.2 0.4
Cis-8-mercapto-p-menthan 0.3 3.3 3.0
Hydroxy-pseudo-diosphenol trace 0.6 0.1
4-hydroxy diosphenol trace 0.4 0.4
Trans-8-acelthio-p-menthan 5.7 0.6 0.1
Cis-8-acelthio-p-menthan 0.5 0.4 0.3

Comment

There is a visibly big difference in the profiles of the three different oils.

At Buchu Moon we chose to specialise in the Diosphenol Chemotype.

In many tests from various localities throughout the Cederberg area, there were many variations in the oil profiles.

The constants within the Diosphenol Chemotype were:
low pulegones (except when in flower or seed)
high diosphenol - highest we found was 58%

We have now established high diosphenol mother blocks with diosphenol counts of typically 35% - 55%. Seed harvested from these blocks is used to stock our nursery and we usually have 150 000 seedlings for sale each year.