Phytochemical Diversity of Fennel landraces from Various Growth Types and Origins
¹Department of Agronomy and Plant Breeding Sciences, Aburaihan College, University of Tehran, IR 14174 Tehran, Iran
²Department of Food Sciences, Agriculture College, Basrah University, IQ 61004 Basrah, Iraq
³Department of Plant, Soil and Microbiology Sciences, Michigan State University, US 48823 East Lansing, USA
The presence of certain secondary metabolites in fennel essential oil is the cause of its pharmacological and flavoring properties. In this study phytochemical diversity including essential oil content and compositions of 26 fennel landraces from various growth types and geographical originations were assessed. Essential oil content of the fennel landraces varied from 1.1 to 4.8%; with late and medium maturities showing higher essential oil contents than early maturities. According to the Gas Chromatography Mass Spectrometry (GCMS) results, the main essential oil components were trans-anethole (1.2–88.4%), methyl chavicol (0.2–59.1%), fenchone (1.1–14.7%) and limonene (5.3–15.7%). According to the clustering results, it was noticed that all the fennel landraces originated from arid climates were trans-anethole chemotype with an average concentration of 76%. The early and late maturity fennels from humid climates were methyl chavicol chemotype with an average concentration of 54%. The late maturities from humid and moderate climates were fenchone chemotypes with 12% concentration, and finally the early and late maturities from semi-arid climates were limonene chemotype with 12% concentration. Our results confirm that climate is a major evolutionary determining factor on the phytochemical diversity of fennel landraces.