Tag Archives: Akebia quinata

Akebia quinata

Botanical Name : Akebia quinata
Family: Lardizabalaceae
Genus: Akebia
Species: A. quinata
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Ranunculales

Synonyms : Rajania quinata.

Common Names :Chocolate Vine or Five-leaf Akebia

Habitat : Akebia quinata is native to E. Asia – China, Japan, Korea. It grows in woods, hedges and thickets in mountainous areas. Forest margins along streams, scrub on mountain slopes at elevations of 300 – 1500 metres in China.

Description:
Akebia quinata is a deciduous Climber growing to 12 m (39ft 4in) at a fast rate.It has compound leaves with five leaflets. The inflorescences are clustered in racemes and are chocolate-scented, with three or four sepals. The fruits are sausage-shaped pods which contain edible pulp..

CLICK & SEE THE PICTURES

It is hardy to zone 5 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from Apr to May, and the seeds ripen from Sep to October. The flowers are monoecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but both sexes can be found on the same plant)The plant is not self-fertile.

Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in full shade (deep woodland) semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

Cultivation :    
Requires a well-drained moisture retentive soil. Prefers a good loamy soil. Succeeds in acid or alkaline soils. Prefers partial shade but succeeds in full sun. Succeeds on north facing walls. Plants are fast growing and can be invasive. Dormant plants are hardy to about -20°c but they can be somewhat tender when young. The young growth in spring, even on mature plants, is frost-tender and so it is best to grow the plants in a position sheltered from the early morning sun. This species grows very well in S.W. England. Plants are evergreen in mild winters. Resentful of root disturbance, either grow the plants in containers prior to planting them out or plant them out whilst very young. Plants are not normally pruned, if they are growing too large they can be cut back by trimming them with shears in early spring. The flowers have a spicy fragrance, reminiscent of vanilla. Plants are shy to fruit, they possibly require some protection in the flowering season, hand pollination is advisable. Plants are probably self-sterile, if possible at least 2 plants should be grown, each from a different source. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus.

                                                     
Propagation : 
Seed – best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe. Surface sow in a light position. The seed usually germinates in 1 – 3 months at 15°c. Stored seed should be given 1 month cold stratification and can be very difficult to germinate. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in light shade in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, July/August in a frame. The cuttings can be slow to root. Cuttings can also be taken of soft wood in spring. Root cuttings, December in a warm greenhouse. Layering in early spring. Very easy, the plants usually self-layer and so all you need to do is dig up the new plants and plant them out directly into their permanent positions.

Edible Uses :
Edible Parts: Fruit;  Leaves.
Edible Uses: Tea.
CLICK & SEE
Fruit – raw. Sweet but insipid. The fruit has a delicate flavour and a soft, juicy texture. Lemon juice is sometimes added to the fruit to enhance the flavour. The bitter skin of the fruit is fried and eaten. The fruit is 5 – 10cm long and up to 4m wide. Soft young shoots are used in salads or pickled. The leaves are used as a tea substitute.

Medicinal Uses:
Anodyne;  Antiphlogistic;  Bitter;  Cancer;  Contraceptive;  Depurative;  Diaphoretic;  Diuretic;  Emmenagogue;  FebrifugeGalactogogue;
Laxative;  Resolvent;  Stimulant;  Stomachic;  Vulnerary.

The stems are anodyne, antifungal, antiphlogistic, bitter, diaphoretic, diuretic, emmenagogue, febrifuge, laxative, galactogogue, resolvent, stimulant, stomachic and vulnerary. Taken internally, it controls bacterial and fungal infections and is used in the treatment of urinary tract infections, lack of menstruation, to improve lactation etc. The stems are harvested in the autumn and dried for later use. The fruit is antirheumatic, depurative, diuretic, febrifuge, stomachic and tonic. It is a popular remedy for cancer. The root is febrifuge. The plant was ranked 13th in a survey of 250 potential antifertility plants in China.

In the Chinese pharmacopoeia it is believed to be therapeutic as a diuretic, antiphlogistic, galactagogue and analgesic. The principal use of the herb in China is as a traditional remedy for insufficient lactation in nursing mothers. The medicinal part of the plant is the woody stem which is sliced in transverse sections and prepared as a decoction. The stem contains approximately 30% potassium salts thus giving the diuretic action.

A popular traditional remedy for insufficient lactation in nursing mothers is to simmer 10-15 grams of this herb together with pork knuckles for 3 hours, adding water as needed, then drinking the herbal broth throughout the day.

Other Uses:
The gelatinous placentation are littered with seeds but have a sweet flavor, so they used to be enjoyed by children playing out in the countryside in the olden days in Japan. The rind, with a slight bitter taste, is used as vegetable, e.g., stuffed with ground meat and deep-fried. The vines are traditionally used for basket-weaving .

In China A. quinata is referred to as (“mù tung” (Pinyin) or “mu tung” (Wade-Giles)) meaning “perforated wood”. It is also occasionally known as (“tong cao” (Pinyin) or “tung tsao” (Wade-Giles)) meaning “perforated grass”.

A. quinata is listed in the National Pest Plant Accord list which identifies pest plants that are prohibited from sale, commercial propagation and distribution across New Zealand.

The peeled stems are very pliable and can be used in basket making. Plants have sometimes been used as a ground cover, but their method of growth does not really lend themselves to this use.

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

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akebia_quinata
http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Akebia+quinata
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_LMN.htm

Enhanced by Zemanta
Advertisements

Akebia

Botanical  Name: Akebiae Caulis;/ Akebia trifoliata

Family: Lardizabalaceae
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Ranunculales
Genus: Akebia
Pinyin Mandarin Name: Mu Tong
Common English Name: Akebia; Akebia Stem

Part Used: Stem (caulis)

Nature: Cool
Taste: Bitter

Species & their Habitats:

*Akebia chingshuiensis T. Shimizu, native to Taiwan
*Akebia longeracemosa Matsumura, native to China and Taiwan
*Akebia quinata (Houttuyn) Decaisne – Chocolate Vine or Five-leaf Akebia, native to China, Japan and Korea
*Akebia trifoliata (Thunberg) Koidzumi – Three-leaf Akebia, native to China, Japan and Korea

a) Akebia trifoliate subsp. australis (Diels) T. Shimizu
b)Akebia trifoliata subsp. longisepala H. N. Qin
c)Akebia trifoliata subsp. trifoliata

Invasive plant
Akebia quinata is listed under the National Pest Plant Accord as an “unwanted organism” in New Zealand since it is an invasive plant.
DESCRIPTION: This group consists of hardy, semi-evergreen, climbing plants that are natives of Japan, China, and Korea. They are grown for their pretty flowers and foliage. The flowers of these plants are followed by interesting, sausage-shaped, edible fruits. They are suitable for growing over hedges, low trees, bushes, or stumps. A. quinata (Fiveleaf Akebia) is a large, vigorous climber that grows from 28 to 40 feet high. The leaves consist of five, notched, green leaflets that are flushed with red. In mid-spring, racemes of fragrant, reddish-purple flowers are produced. Male and female flowers are separate, but borne on the same inflorescence; the females at the base and the males at the tip. The dark purple fruits are 2 to 4 inches long; black seeds are embedded in white pulp. A. trifoliata (Threeleaf Akebia) is also a large vine growing up to 28 feet high. The leaves consist of three, shallowly lobed leaflets. The dark purple flowers are produced in racemes, in mid-spring. The light violet fruits grow 3 to 5 inches long, usually in groups of three.

click & see the pictures

POTTING: Akebias will thrive in regular, well-drained soil, in sun or partial shade. They grow better in light rather than heavy soil. These vines need a mild spring to bear flowers and a long, hot summer to produce fruit. In mild climates, these vines may become a little over vigorous and will need to be pruned. Once in a while, excessively long shoots may be trimmed back and in late fall or early spring, they may be thinned a bit.

PROPAGATION: Seeds, layering and cuttings are all methods of propagation. Seeds can be sown as soon as they are ripe in pots or shallow boxes filled with sandy soil, in a greenhouse or cold frame. Cuttings may be inserted in pots of sandy soil in a closed frame for a few weeks until they form roots, or in sandy soil outdoors covered with a bell jar or hand light. Layers may be made by fastening the ends of shoots to the ground with wooden pegs until they form roots.

Medicinal Uses:

A pungent, bitter herb that controls bacterial and fungal infections and stimulates the circulatory and urinary systems and female organs. It is a potent diuretic due to the high content of potassium salts.  Internally for urinary tract infections, rheumatoid arthritis, absence of menstruation, and insufficient lactation.  Taken internally, it controls gram-positive bacterial and fungal infections.
This herb is used to treat symptoms of difficult urination, insomnia, absent menstruation, sore tongue and throat, joint pains, poor circulation, and deficient lactation (TCM: internal damp heat).
Meridians Entered: Heart, Small Intestine, Bladder
Traditional Usages and Functions
Promotes urination and drains heat from the Heart via the Small Intestine; promotes lactation and unblocks blood vessels.

Common Formulas Used In

Dianthus; Gentiana.
Pharmacological & Clinical Research
*Oral and Intravenous preparations of Akebia Caulis showed a very marked diuretic effect in rabbits. This effect was not produced by the ash and was therefore not due to the presence of potassium, but to some other active ingredient. Akebia Caulis had a mild antidiuretic effect when injected intravenously into anesthetized dogs, but increased urine output when given to healthy human volunteers.
*Decoctions of Akebia Caulis had an inhibitory effect in nonpregnant and pregnant mouse uterus specimens, but a stimulatory effect in mouse intestine specimens.
Cautions & Contraindications:
*Contraindicated during pregnancy and in the absence of interior damp-heat.

*This herb easily injures the fluids and should be used with extreme caution in patients with any sign of yin deficiency.
Do not overdose: acute renal failure was reported following a dose of 60

Cautions in Use
Do not use during pregnancy. Use with extreme caution where there are deficient-Yin conditions since akebia strongly promotes urination.

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://www.acupuncture-and-chinese-medicine.com/akebia.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akebia
http://www.botany.com/akebia.html
http://library.thinkquest.org/25983/4.%20Akebia%20Caulis.htm

http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_AB.htm