(133) Growth and Development of Introduced Leuzea in the Rose Valley, Bulgaria

in HortScience

Leuzea, or Maralroot, is a perennial medicinal plant originating from Siberia, and is characterized with significant metabolic and tonic effects. A 3-year study was conducted at the Research Institute for Roses, Aromatic and Medicinal Plants Kazanluk, Bulgaria, on the introduction of various genotypes of Leuzea (Rhaponticum carthamoides Willd/Iljin.) from the Altai region, Russia. Phenological observations, and up to 11 morphological indices were characterized for 1-, 2-, and 3-year-old plants. Generally, it was found that the climatic and soil conditions in the region were not very favorable for the growth and development of Leuzea. Also, for the tested region, Leuzea should be grown only under irrigation. Yields of Leuzea roots and rhizomes reached 7.19 t/ha in the 2nd year, and up to 8.62 t/ha in the 3rd year. Yields of aboveground herbage were up to 8.73 t/ha when plants were harvested at the beginning of blossoming. Second cut of the above-ground herbage of Leuzea was not satisfactory under the climatic conditions of the region. When grown for seed production, seed yields during the 3rd year were up to 128 kg/ha. Leuzea may have a potential as a cash crop for the region if grown for seed production.

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