In our research project under cultivation we examined 4 cultivars ('Soroksári 40', 'Lutea , 'Goral', 'Bona') and 28 wild populations of chamomile assuring all of them the same environmental conditions. Plant height, flower-diameter, essential-oil content, and the main terpenoid and flavonoid composition were analysed. The aim of our study was...to establish the genetic background of breeding a new cultivar as well as encircle those natural habitats that give chamomile drug with the best quality.
In the case of plant height populations from the Great Hungarian Plain were lower than plants from Transdanubia and the control cultivars. Between the wild and the standard individuals we found significant differences with relevance to the flower-diameter. With regard to the essential oil content the populations were very heterogeneous even those, which came from the same habitat. Populations form Transdanubia and Nagyiván reached the essential oil level of the cultivars (0.721-0.931 gi100g), and 75% of the examined plants exceeded the minimum requirement of the PhHg VIII.
According to the essential oil composition our previous statement was confirmed that in the populations of Transdanubia and Northern part of Danube—Tisza Mid Region the main component is bisabolol-oxide A (30-41.2%), while plants native to the territory cast of the river Tisza are mainly characterised by a-bisabolol (32.3-48.4). In some samples the ratio of bisabolol-oxide B was more than 10%. The chamazulene content was higher in the cultivars selected to this component (above 20%), than in the wild populations (varied between 1.22 and 17.2%). Populations originated from the central part of Hortobágy region had extremely high apigenin content (10-13 mg/g), but in the case of chlorogenic acid, hyperoside and quercitrin we did not find any differences affected by the origin.
Taxonomical evaluation of six taxa of the Achillea aggregate was carried out to determine their potential for breeding and cultivation. We used complex morphological, cytological and chemical aspects of characterisation. Three taxa of tetraploid genom and high chamazulene contents (33-40% ess.oil) proved to be A. collina Becke...r. A strain of wild origin had also high -bisabolol content and high oil level, comparable with the selected cultivars. A population was identified as new chemotype of A. pannonica Scheele with typical morphological and cytological traits, a wide sesquiterpene spectrum but lacking of 1.8 cineole and -pinene. We found a mixed population which consisted of both A. collina and A. pannonica plants. A tetraploid, azuleneless taxon could be concluded as A. pratensis Saukel and Langer not described before in Hungary. The diverse performance of the populations calls the attention to the significance of controlled plant raw in phytopharmaceutical products.