Eco-Genetic variations in biological activities of sea berry (Hippophae rhamnoides)

W. Letchamo, T. Molnar, C. R. Funk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Sea berry or sea buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides L. 2n = 24) (Oblepiha, Sha-ji, Siberian pineapple, Sanddorn) from the Eleagnaceae family is a perennial, dioecious, wind-pollinated species that produces orange, red or yellow berries. Russians tried to guard the "secrets" of Hippophae use in health, space and sports research programs during the 1960s and 1970s. Hippophae is generally regarded as an exceptionally adapted hardy crop thriving well under arid, semi-arid, fragile mountainous areas, extreme temperatures varying from +40°C to -43°C. Being a non-legume it has the ability to fix atmospheric nitrogen due to root nodule association with Frankia, a soil actinomycete, and can rapidly develop extensive root system and canopy, enabling other intercropped species to develop better. The fruits, leaves, cork and roots contain over 100 different kinds of nutrients and bio- active substances. There is an interest for Hippophae in N. America. However, there have not been published studies regarding differences in Hippophae cultivars and their chemical profiles. The objective of our research is to assist in the identification, selection and development of promising cultivars for specific environmental conditions, such as those in N. America thereby increasing opportunities for alternative and effective production of nutraceutical and personal care products, new animal feed components, environmental and soil restoration, and improvement of the local economy. Various cultivars of Siberian and German origin were introduced to Oregon. Most cultivars introduced from Siberia ripened faster and had relatively low height. Cultivars under Siberian condition showed significant variations in terms of resistance to environmental stresses, such as low winter temperatures, diseases, pests, morphology, fruit yield and color, flavor, palatability and content of amino acids in seed cake obtained after pressing the oil. All cultivars under this study withstood temperatures down to -43°C and produced yields comparable to other parts of Russia. Under Novosibirsk growing conditions, the fruits of most cultivars start ripening from mid August to the first week of September. Based on the weight of 100 fruits, the cultivars are categorized into three main groups. Group I (large fruit size): 74.2-79.7 g/100 (Tschuiskaja, Prevoskhodnaja, Obilnaja); group II (medium fruit size): 52.7-56.6 g/100 (Obskaja, Zolotistaja, Sibirskaja, Orangevaja, Zarianka, hybrid 30-61-1614), group III (small fruit size): 42.3-47.0 g/100 of fresh berries (Dar Katugne and Taliskaja). Our experience shows that with little investment and time, suitable cultivars can be identified for commercial cultivation and processing in new areas, such as the U.S.A. and Canada. Hippophae is a valuable and promising multipurpose crop that needs immediate attention in agricultural, soil and environmental improvements and as a source for new products formulations for human and pet health, sports, cosmetic uses and space tourism /research programs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)229-243
Number of pages15
JournalActa Horticulturae
StatePublished - 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Horticulture


  • Amino-acid content
  • Oblepiha
  • Sanddorn
  • Sensory evaluation
  • Winter resistance
  • Yield


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