Essential oils from wild and cultivated Origanum syriacum were prepared monthly by hydrodistillation. Their composition in thymol, carvacrol and thymoquinone were studied byGas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC-MS). Essential oils extraction ranged from 3.82 and 3.44% in February to 8.4 and 6.8% in may, from cultivated and wild samples respectively. The essential oil composition for all samples was dominated by carvacrol. The cultivated populations harvested in April just before flowering had a higher peak content in thymol (31.5%) and carvacrol (49.8%). Thymoquinone was detected in traces only in February, and was not found in any other population studied from O. syriacum of South Lebanon.
Key words: Origanum syriacum, essential oil, carvacrol, thymol, thymoquinone.
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