Anemarrhena asphodeloides

Botanical Name :Anemarrhena asphodeloides
Family: Asparagaceae
Subfamily: Agavoideae
Genus: Anemarrhena
Species: A. asphodeloides
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Asparagales

Common Names :Zhi Mu

Habitats: Anemarrhena asphodeloides is native to  E. Asia – N. China and Japan. Grows in  Mountain woodlands. Exposed slopes and hills. Scrub, grassy slopes, steppes, sunny and sandy hillsides from near sea level to 1500 metres.

Description:
Anemarrhena asphodeloides is an evergreen Perennial growing to 0.5 m (1ft 8in) by 1 m (3ft 3in). It is in flower from Aug to September. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs)

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The plant prefers light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils.The plant prefers acid and neutral soils..It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland).It requires moist soil.The plant can tolerates strong winds but not maritime exposure.

Cultivation:
Requires a rich moist neutral to acid soil that is rich in organic matter, in a position in partial or dappled shade. Plants are tolerant of strong winds. Plants can be naturalized in wild or woodland gardens and other moist shaded situations that approximate to their natural wooded mountain habitats. This species is not hardy in all parts of Britain, it tolerates temperatures down to at least -5°c. This plant is occasionally cultivated in China as a medicinal herb. The fragrant flowers open in the evening.

Propagation
Seed – best sown as soon as it is ripe in a cold frame, it usually germinates in the spring. Stored seed should be sown in late winter or early spring in a cold frame. It sometimes germinates within 1 – 3 months at 15°c, but may take a year. The seed should be completely separated from the fruit and should only just be covered by soil. If the seed has been sown thinly enough, then it is possible to leave the seedlings in the pot for their first growing season, dividing them after they become dormant. Make sure to give them liquid feeds at intervals through the spring and summer. Otherwise prick out the seedlings when they are large enough to handle. Plant out in late spring or early summer at the beginning of their second or third years growth. Division in spring as new growth is just commencing

Medicinal Uses:
Antifungal;  Antiseptic;  Bitter;  Diuretic;  Expectorant;  FebrifugeHypoglycaemic;  Laxative;  Lenitive;  Sedative;  Tonic.

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The rhizome is anti-fungal, antiseptic, bitter, diuretic, expectorant, febrifuge, hypoglycaemic, laxative, lenitive, sedative and tonic. It has an antibacterial action, inhibiting the growth of Bacillus dysenteriae, B. typhi, B. paratyphi, Proteus and Pseudomonas. It is taken internally in the treatment of high fevers in infectious diseases, TB, chronic bronchitis, diabetes and urinary problems. It should not be given to patients with diarrhoea and should be administered with caution since when taken in excess it can cause a sudden drop in blood pressure. Externally, it is used as a mouthwash in the treatment of ulcers. The rhizome is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use

Internally used for high fever in infectious diseases, tuberculosis, chronic bronchitis, and urinary problems.  Zhi mu is used in Chinese herbal medicine for “excess heat” – fever, night sweats, and coughs.  It has a bitter taste and a “cold temperament,” and is used to treat canker sores, particularly in combination with rehmannia and Scrophularia ningpoensis.  Externally as a mouthwash for mouth ulcers. Therapeutic action is slightly altered by cooking with wine or salt. It has an antibacterial action, inhibiting the growth of Bacillus dysenteriae, B. typhi, B. paraatyphi, Proteus and Pseudomonas. It is taken internally in the treatment of high fevers in infectious diseases, TB, chronic bronchitis and urinary problems. It should not be given to patients with diarrhea and should be administered with caution since when taken in excess it can cause a sudden drop in blood pressure. Externally, it is used as a mouthwash in the treatment of ulcers. The rhizome is harvested in the autumn and dried for later use.

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Other Uses
Soap.

The root contains about 6% saponins. Saponins make an excellent soap, having a gentle cleansing effect on the skin and clothes without removing the natural body oils from the skin. To extract the saponins it is usually sufficient to cut the root into thin slices and then gently simmer in water.

Known Hazards : It should not be given to patients with diarrhoea and should be administered with caution since when taken in excess it can cause a sudden drop in blood pressure.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anemarrhena_asphodeloides
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Anemarrhena+asphodeloides
http://www.nature-s-health.com/products/theproduct1.asp?pid=218&cid=1
http://saludbio.com/imagen/anemarrhena-asphodeloides-mtc

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