Terpene Sources

There’s no perfect way to Extract Terpenes from organic sources. As with most things, it’s really a cost-benefit analysis – how do you eliminate impurities like fats, chlorophyll, and other plant metabolites without damaging the precious compounds you’re trying to preserve? There’s also the issue of time – the longer the process takes, the less efficient it is for commercial use and the more chances there are for impurities to work their way into the finished product. There are a whole host of methods and technologies that are used in pursuit of that goal. In order to isolate one needs to find a suitable source.

Basil 

Aromatic Properties 

Fresh, strong, pungent and often sweet smell.

Main Source

Caryophyllene 

Terpenes Produced 

Contains significant higher levels of the sesquiterpene β-caryophyllene and the monoterpenes linalool, 1,8-cineole and limonene. The following terpenes are also found; Linalol, Borneone, Methylchavicol, Camphor, Cineole, Citronella, Eugenol, Ocimene, Pinene, Limonene, Sylvestrene

Terpene Properties 

Caryophyllene is a bigger molecule, the unique molecular structure of caryophyllene allows it to easily bind to CB2

Uses 

Pain-relieving properties

Parsley

Aromatic Properties 

Warm-spicy, heavy-leafy, yet fresh-herb-like odor.

Main Source

Myristicin

Terpenes Produced 

Contains several important terpenes; α-Humulene14.2%, β-Caryophyllene13.8%, Dihydrocarveol 11.4%, α-Terpineol 11.3%, Terpinolene9.5%, α-Phellandrene9.1 %, β-Ocimene8.8%, p-Cymene8.8 8.4%, β-Myrcene 8.02%, Limonene8%.

Terpene Properties 

Myristicin serves as an anticholinergic, blocking the neurotransmitter acetylcholine from binding to its receptors in nerve cells, consequently inhibiting parasympathetic nerve impulses and  used for its pain alleviating and relaxing properties.

Uses 

Parsley essential oil is used in aromatherapy and other similar applications due to its synergetic detoxifying, anti bacterial, anti fungal, digestive properties

Oregano

Aromatic Properties

Camphoraceous aroma and a slightly bitter, earthy/musty, and minty notes. 

Main Source

Carvacrol

Terpenes Produced 

Oregano oils to be found in laboratory tests are naturally distilled with an average concentration of  80% carvacrol present. Terpenes identified in the different species of oregano areThymol, γ-terpinene and p-cymene; while terpinen-4-ol, linalool, β-myrcene, trans-sabinene hydrate, and β-caryophyllene 

Terpene Properties

A natural monoterpene derivative of cymene. An inhibitor of bacterial growth,

Uses 

Carvacrol is used as a food additive. Potent activator of the human ion channels transient receptor potential

Mint 

Aromatic Properties 

Sweet, refreshing flavor accompanied by a cooling sensation and a distinctive scent with eucalyptus qualities.

Main Source

Menthol 

Terpenes Produced 

Dried peppermint typically has 0.3–0.4%m of volatile oil containing menthol 7–48%, menthone 20–46%, menthyl acetate 3–10%, menthofuran 1–17% and 1,8-cineol 3–6%. Peppermint oil also contains small amounts of many additional terpenes including limonene, pulegone, caryophyllene and pinene

Terpene Propreties 

Menthol is used practically everywhere and is praised for the results it brings to its associated products. 

Uses 

Often used to relieve minor pain and irritation and prevent infection.

Lavender 

Aromatic Properties 

 Complex yet delicate, herbaceous and soothing woody connotation often described as earthy floral scent,

Main Source

Linalool

Terpenes Produced 

Linalool, a-pinene, limonene, 1,8-eneole, cis-ocimene, trans-ocimene, 3-octanone, camphor, linalyl acetate, caryophyllene, terpinen-4-ol and lavendulyl acetate.

Terpene Properties 

Uses 

Linalool is a monoterpene, it has a role as a plant metabolite and is produced by an assortment of plants. Historically used in traditional medicine for its sedative and anti-epileptic properties

Cumin 

Aromatic Properties 

Woody, pleasant, floral, lemony, spicy, green, herbal, cooling, and earthy.

Main Source

p-Cymene

Terpenes Produced 

 ρ-Cymene 23–39%, β-Pinene 22–27%,γ-Terpinene 11–27%, γ-Terpinene 26.36  27.73%, Cuminal 8–17%,ρ-Mentha-1,4-dien-7-ol 1.0–5.5%, β-Myrcene 1.3–1.75%

Terpene Properties 

Pain-relieving due to its anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.

Uses 

Medicine and food purposes

Pepper 

Aromatic Properties 

Penetrating ,hot,woody and piney scent

Main Source

β‐Caryophyllene

Terpenes Produced 

Terpene Propreties 

The interesting thing about this terpene is that it is a full agonist of CB2 cannabinoid receptors while having no interaction with CB1 and thus does not exert any psychoactive effects. 

Uses 

β‐Caryophyllene & the Treatment of Neurological Diseases

Artichoke 

Aromatic Properties 

Delicate sweetness and a mild aroma of nuts.

Main Source

Cynaropicrin

Terpenes and Flavonoids 

Quercetin, Silymarin

silibinin, isosilibinin, silicristin, silidianin

Proprieties 

Cynaropicrin, a sesquiterpene lactone, as a strong regulator of CD29 and CD98 functions

Uses

Reduces nausea and vomiting and lowers cholesterol (LDL).

Silibinin to treat liver disorders

Aloevera 

Aromatic Properties 

Bitter, green herbal and  leafy scent.

Main Source

Borneol 

Terpenes Produced 

Borneol should be used in concert with medication targeting hippocampus or hypothalamus to exert its synergistic effect.

Terpene Properties 

Alkaloids, terpenes, saponins, tannins, steroids and flavonoids are believed to be responsible for the plant’s medicinal uses.

Uses

Aloe vera is most commonly used as a topical medication, rubbed onto the skin rather than eaten. Borneol has the unique ability to reduce both pain and inflammation.

Orange

Aromatic Properties 

Sweet, fruity, fresh and tangy aroma

Main Source

Limonene 

Terpenes Produced 

Limonene 94 Myrcene 2.1 Sabinene and β-Pinene 1 Octanal 0.4

Terpene Properties 

Limone works on the endocannabinoid system and helps regulate cannabinoid uptake by the receptors CB1 and CB2. Though it revolutionized many industries, new research is uncovering how valuable Limonene is.

Uses 

Oil is antiseptic and anti-inflammatory which makes it an ideal ingredient in your skin and hair routine.

Lemon

Aromatic Properties 

Clean, tangy and zesty aroma

Main Source

Geraniol, beta-Pinene

Terpenes Produced 

 Geranial, Neral, gamma-Terpinene, beta-Pinene, Limonene, Citronellal, Sabinene and Linalool. 

Terpene Propreties 

Apple

Aromatic Properties 

Sweet, estry, fruity and tangy 

Main Source

Alpha-farnesene.

Terpenes Produced 

α-Pinene; β-Pinene, eucalyptol [as 1,8-cineol], Limonene, Linalool, α-Cubebene, Caryophyllene, aromadendrene, α-Farnesene

Terpene Propreties 

Grape

Aromatic Properties 

Sulfureous topnote  and herbaceous tones.

Main Source

Nerol 

Terpenes Produced 

Linalool, Geraniol, Nerol, Terpineol and Hotrienol.

Terpene Propreties 

Nerol and geraniol are the same substance sharing molecular weight and formula but behaving differently.

Uses 

Widely used as an analgesic to relieve pain and is also an effective topical drug enhancer.

Some studies also say that it is used as an ingredient in Coca-Cola even though there are not confirmed reports on this.

Mango 

Aromatic Properties 

Top notes of citrus accompanied by a tropical and deliciously sweet aroma

Main Source

Myrcene 

Terpenes Produced 

car-3-ene, Limonene, α-Pinene, γ-Terpinene, α-Humulene, β-Selinene, Acetophenone, Benzaldehyde

Terpene Propreties 

Myrcene has powerful antibiotic, antimutagenic, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and sedative effects.

Uses

Myrcene is an important intermediate used in the perfumery industry.

Pineapple 

Aromatic Properties 

Juicy, nectarous, slightly sour and very fresh fruit note that evokes the tropical pineapple fruit.

Main Source

Many comercial terpenes are produced from pineapple. 

Terpenes Produced 

α-Muurolene 22.23-28.94%, Copaene 19.16% γ-Amorphene 10.87-19.65%, α-Cubebene 11%, δ-Cadinene 7.27%, β-Elemene 4.91, 3.92%, β-Selinene 3.66%, β-Caryophyllene – 2.58%, Sativene 2.35%, Cycloisosativene 1.55 2.28%, α-Terpineol 1.54%, Calarene 1.26%, Valencene 1.10%, α-Calacorene 0.99 1.32%  β-Cubebene 0.65%, β-Guaiene 0.58% 

Terpene Properties 

The name is derived from that of the Cade juniper, the wood of which yields an oil from which cadinene isomers were first isolated.

Uses

This Sesquiterpene is lesser used with many potential new applications  being explored

More Botanical Sources

There are many other Botanical sources and exotic terpenes out there. If you have been exposed to other interesting sources or extracted terpenes share with us so we can spread the knowledge.

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