Folia Horticulturae

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Different organs of wool mullein (Verbascum thapsiforme Schrad.) as potential medicinal raw materials

Zenon Węglarz, Anna Geszprych

Department of Vegetable and Medicinal Plants
Warsaw Agricultural University
Nowoursynowska 166, 02-787 Warsaw, Poland

So far, only flowers of wool mullein (Verbascum thapsiforme Schrad.) have been used as a medicinal raw material of this plant. Taking into consideration the difficulties in obtaining high yield and good quality of this raw material, the possibility of using other organs of V. thapsiforme was evaluated on the basis of the accumulation of the main groups of biologically active compounds (mucilage, flavonoids, polyphenolic acids, carotenoids, saponins, and verbascoside). The investigation was carried out on one- and two-year-old plants. The highest mucilage content was observed in leaves, especially in the rosette leaves of one-year-old plants. The leaves of two-year-old plants showed the highest flavonoid content. The concentration of polyphenolic acids in all aboveground organs was similar and did not depend on the stage of plant development. Underground organs harvested in the first year of plant vegetation showed a distinctly lower content of these compounds. The highest carotenoid content was observed in leaves, with no respect to the time of their harvesting, and in the inflorescences harvested before blooming. Saponins were present mainly in the roots. Taking into consideration the yield of investigated compounds, the most efficient raw material appeared to be the leaves of two-year-old plants collected before blooming. Only in the case of polyphenolic acids, was a higher yield of these compounds obtained from flowers.

Węglarz Z., Geszprych A., 2002. Different organs of wool mullein (Verbascum thapsiforme Schrad.) as potential medicinal raw materials. Folia Horticulturae 14/2: 153-162.