Essential oil production of Murraya paniculata (L.) Jack at different harvest times
Murraya paniculata (L.) Jack has a fragrant flower, from which the fragrance is due to the essential oil. The study aimed to investigate the production of essential oil and its chemical compounds at different harvest times. The research was conducted at an organic experimental farm, Bogor Agricultural University, Bogor, Indonesia (6°30’-6°45’ S, 106°30’-106°45’ E) from October 2016 to February 2017 using randomized complete block design. The experiment consisted of one factor, namely the harvest times, comprised of harvest at 05.00-07.00 and 07.00-09.00 a.m. M. paniculata flowers were collected at three different flower ages, comprised of two days before anthesis, one day before anthesis and the day of anthesis (blooming). The different flower ages indicated by the flower size. Ethanol extraction method was used to extract the essential oil of the flowers from different harvesting times and then chemical compounds were analyzed by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry. The result showed that flower number and weight were not affected by harvesting times. The flower collected on the day of anthesis had the highest flower number and weight. Harvesting flowers at anthesis can be done at 05.00-09.00 a.m. The highest quantity and quality of essential oils were obtained by harvesting the flowers at anthesis. β-methylesculetin and murralongin were the primary compounds in M. paniculata flowers that harvested at 05.00-09.00 a.m.