The in vitro antibacterial and antifungal activities of Australian tea tree oil, cajuput oil, niaouli oil, kanuka oil and manuka oil as well as of a beta-triketone complex isolated from manuka oil were investigated in a constituent-oriented study. The compositions of the oils were analysed by capillary GLC and GLC-MS. The MICs for sixteen different microorganisms were determined applying the broth dilution method. Australian tea tree oil showed the best overall antimicrobial effect. The best inhibitory effects on Gram-positive bacteria and dermatophytes were achieved with manuka oil due to its beta-triketone content.