Botanical Name: Fraxinus bungeana
Species: F. bungeana
Synonyms: KB Fraxinus dippeliana Lingelsh. ex C.K.Schneid. Fraxinus floribunda Bunge ex A.DC. Fraxinus parvifolia (Wenz.)
Common Names: Xiao Ye Qin
Habitat: Fraxinus bungeana is native to E. Asia – N. China. It grows in dry sandy soils, rock crevices at elevations of 0 – 1500 metres in Anhui, Hebei, Henan, Liaoning, Shandong and Shanxi.
Fraxinus bungeana is a deciduous shrub or small tree up to 15 ft high; twigs minutely downy. Leaves of thin texture, 4 to 6 in. long; leaflets five or seven, stalked, unequal-sided, oval and obovate, 1 to 2 in. long, 1?2 to 1 in. wide, tapered at the base, with abrupt slender points, round-toothed except towards the base, quite glabrous. Main leaf-stalk minutely downy, with a narrow groove on the upper side; stalk of leaflets 1?8 to 1?4 in. long, minutely downy. Flowers (with petals) produced in terminal panicles. Fruits a little over 1 in. long, 1?5 in. wide.
It is in flower from May to June. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Wind.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils and can grow in very alkaline soils.
It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil. The plant can tolerates strong winds but not maritime exposure.
It can tolerate atmospheric pollution.
Prefers a deep loamy soil, even if it is on the heavy side. Most members of this genus are gross feeders and require a rich soil. Plants succeed when growing in exposed positions and also in alkaline soils. They tolerate atmospheric pollution. A very ornamental plant. This species might be dioecious, in which case male and female plants must be grown if seed is required.
The seed is best harvested green – as soon as it is fully developed but before it has fully dried on the tree – and can then be sown immediately in a cold frame. It usually germinates in the spring. Stored seed requires a period of cold stratification and is best sown as soon as possible in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in a cold frame for their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions or a nursery bed in late spring or early summer of the following year. If you have sufficient seed then it is possible to sow it directly into an outdoor seedbed, preferably in the autumn. Grow the seedlings on in the seedbed for 2 years before transplanting either to their permanent positions or to nursery beds.
The bark is analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antitussive, diuretic and expectorant. It controls bacterial infections and coughs. It is used in the treatment of diarrhoea, dysentery, cataracts, cough and asthma. The bark contains aesculin, this has anti-inflammatory, anticoagulant and analgesic actions. The bark also contains fraxetin. This has an inhibitory effect on the central nervous system, is a stronger and safer anodyne than aspirin and has some antibacterial activity.
A commercial insect wax is produced on the branches. We are not sure how the wax is produced, one report says that it is as a result of eggs being laid by insects. Another report says that the wax is produced by the plant due to the stimulation of the feeding insects. Yet another report says that the wax is produced from secretions of the insects. The wax is used for making candles and as a polish for earthenware pots, book edges etc. The plant (extract?) is said to be used as a barrier to protect the skin from ultra-violet light.
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.