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Basil Leaf CO2 (SELECT)

Adam Michael has this to say “The aroma of basil CO2 is basil fresh, green and herbaceous with great tenacity. This reminds me of picking the oval, bright shiny leaves straight from my herb pot and crushing them in my hands. Golden yellow in colour, of a pourable viscosity, produced from the leaves of the plant and this is a select extract. Therapeutically basil CO2 is useful for easing headaches, nausea, anxiety, muscle cramps, flatulence and digestive spasms.”

Family: Botanically, Ocimum basilicum is part of the Labiatae family which to name a few also includes the Thymus and Salvia genuses, you find typical traits of this family are a square stem, opposite and intersected leaves with copious gland dots. The flowers are bilaterally symmetrical and have two distinct lips. Many of the family, particularly subfamily Nepetoideae, to which Ocimum belongs, are strongly aromatic because the essential oils consist of monoterpenes, sesquiterpenes and phenylpropanoids.

The varying chemotypes result in differing fragrance profile, therapeutic properties and ultimately uses, although it seems a given that all Ocimum species and even sub species used in warmer climates have great use as an insect repellent. The reason for the major swings in the chemistry is largely due to polymorphism in Ocimum basilicum which is caused by interspecific hybridisation. The morphological diversity within basil species has been accentuated by centuries of cultivation. Great variation in pigmentation, leaf, shape and size and pubescence are seen (Simon et al., 1990).

Harvest Time: Across Central Europe the growing season is April to September and as a result two harvests are usually possible, the first is in July when the plant starts to really bloom and the second harvest is in September just before the frosty nights come into full effect. However in Egypt where this CO2 basil is grown and produced, the growing season starts earlier, ends later, and as many as four harvests are possible. The problem with multiple harvests is this – content of essential oil in the plant is highest on first harvest (when the plant is blooming/flowering) and is said to possess a superior note and command a higher price tag as well. Now as each harvest proceeds the essential oil content is less and the changes in chemical composition are noticeable. Aware of this I can’t help but feel most books really are only a guideline at best. When discussing the chemistry of basil and to understand the uses in this instance you really do need the chemical analysis.”

Botanical Name: Ocimum basilicum

Origin: Egypt

Select/Total Extract: Select

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