Aesculus seeds contain different yields of escine, a substance which is used in the therapy of different edema. Today, the seeds are collected from the wilderness, which leads to different qualities of rough material for pharmaceutical production. This means also that there is no possibility to prevent any form of contamination (bacteriological or fungal). Since Aesculus hippocastanum is a single tree, all the individual trees show different yields of escine and its related saponins. For the culture, it is necessary to select high yielding individual trees.
Up to today, there is no vegetative propagation system known. The development of a vegetative propagation system will include grafting, root stockings and in vitro techniques.
This leads also to the need of developing a culture system, which allows Aesculus hippocastanum to grow as a shrub or hedge or like vine on espaliers in larger areas. This also requires the development of a new harvesting system.
The above mentioned system will benefit small farmers with value added products and prevent erosion in endangered areas. This will be confirmed by special investigations. An economic use for horticultural plantations is also possible by means of the European Aesculus Cultivation System.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
EH25 9SY Roslin-midlothian