Characterization Of An Italian Biotype Of Clary Sage (Salvia Sclarea L.) Grown In A Semi-arid Mediterranean Environment
Published 2002 · Chemistry
An Italian spontaneous biotype of clary sage (Salvia sclarea L.) was evaluated for its suitability to be cultivated in a semi-arid area and for the influence of these growth conditions on the essential oil composition. Seeds gathered from a spontaneous biotype were sown directly in the field, using a seeding density calculated to achieve a plant population of 7 plants/m2. Essential oils from the inflorescences and leaves of plants harvested at full flowering and early seed ripeness stages were obtained by steam distillation and characterized by GC and GC–MS. The plants showed a good tolerance to the semi-arid growth conditions, yielding more than 700 flowers/plant and about 21 g seeds/plant. Relevant qualitative and quantitative differences were detected between the essential oils from the inflorescences and leaves, the former being characterized by a high content of linalool (26–29%) and linalyl acetate (35–53%) and the latter only by sesquiterpenes, with germacrene D as the main compound (68–69%). Inflorescences at full flowering stage were richer in linalool, α-terpineol and germacrene D, showing a lower content in linalyl acetate in comparison with those collected at early seed ripeness. The development stage did not influence the oil composition of leaves. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.