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Incubation studies using [1-14C]isopentenyl diphosphate and [1-2H2]isopentenyl diphosphate as substrates revealed that isolated chromoplasts from flowers of Narcissus pseudonarcissus L. are able to synthesize monoterpene hydrocarbons and linalool in high yields. The enzymes involved are soluble in the chromoplast stroma. It is hypothesized that in the plant cell plastids are the site of monoterpene biosynthesis, whereas the formation of sesquiterpenes may be restricted to the cytoplasm/endoplasmic reticulum.