Lavandula species are worldwide grown essential oil producing medicinal plants with considerable economic value. Beside volatile oil, lavender also contains different phenolic compounds which have been less widely studied till now. Cultivation of lavender has become widespread in Hungary in the recent years, however, growers have limit...ed knowledge on the productivity of cultivars available. In our research we were aimed to studying the antioxidant capacity and total polyphenol content of samples collected in two growing areas (Dörgicse and Szomód) from flowers of two L. angustifolia (‘Hidcote’, ‘Munstead’) and two L. × intermedia (‘Grosso’, Grappenhall’) varieties, during the full blooming period of 2017. Antioxidant capacity of the samples was determined by FRAP assay (Benzie and Strain, 1996), while total polyphenol content (TPC) was measured by a modified method of Singleton and Rossi (1965). According to our results, varieties of L. × intermedia showed higher values of antioxidant capacity and of total polyphenol content, than those of L. angustifolia cultivars. Among them, both the antioxidant capacity (179.6 mg AAE/g DW) and total polyphenol content values (152.4 mg GAE/g DW) of ’Grosso’ from Dörgicse were the highest. Concerning FRAP values of all the cultivars investigated, larger variability were found in Dörgicse, than in Szomód. Regarding the effect of growing area, each cultivar represented similar FRAP values in Dörgicse and in Szomód, except for ’Grosso’. However, in the case of TPC values, higher variability was observed between the growing areas, especially in the case of ’Grosso’. In the future our studies on lavender polyphenols will be completed with qualitative evaluation of the values obtained by HPLC analysis.
The chemical quality of the essential oils is determined by their composition as well as by the complex aroma features. For the evaluation of odour and aroma, sensory tests are practised, especially for applications such as aromatherapy, food industry or perfumery. In the recent studies we investigated eight Mentha origins (populations... of Mentha iperita, M. spicata and M. arvensis) of our genebank collection using a new and effective instrumental sensory evaluation method parallelly with the usual GC analysis.
The results show that the examined mint clones possess different essential oil accumulation levels and special flavour characteristics, too. The GC analysis of the essential oil revealed characteristic differences at both inter- and intraspecific level in the proportion of mentol, menthon, carvon, limonene, menthyl acetate and in two not identified monoterpenes.
In the sensory tests the special complex aroma enables a reliable distinction with a single exception among the populations by the help of the "electronic nose" equipment. The distinction among the samples based on the sensor signals of the instrument — evaluated by multivariate methods — shows a close relation with the detected monoterpene components of the essential oil.