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DISCLAIMER: These pages are presented solely as a source of INFORMATION and ENTERTAINMENT and to provide stern warnings against use where appropriate. No claims are made for the efficacy of any herb nor for any historical herbal treatment. In no way can the information provided here take the place of the standard, legal, medical practice of any country. Additionally, some of these plants are extremely toxic and should be used only by licensed professionals who have the means to process them properly into appropriate pharmaceuticals. One final note: many plants were used for a wide range of illnesses in the past, but be aware that many of the historical uses have proven to be ineffective for the problems to which they were applied.

(Anemarrhena asphodeloides)

CAUTION: The rhizome [zhi mu] is used in small doses; large doses are reported to be TOXIC and INHIBIT HEART ACTION. Should NOT be used when diarrhea is present and an excess can cause a SUDDEN DROP IN BLOOD PRESSURE.

CONTAINS: Extracts of the plant contain steroidal saponins (including asphonin, an antipyretic of an anti-inflammatory property which is used to treat lower back pain. (lumbago)

A perennial member of the Lily family native to northern China. An ornamental with grasslike foliage and fragrant flowers opening at night.

PROPAGATION: By division in spring or by ripe seed.
NEEDS: Moist soil and partial shade.
HARVEST: Rhizomes in fall which are then dried for use in decoctions.

Bitter, mucilagenous, tonic, antibacterial, antifungal, expectorant, diuretic, reduces blood sugar levels, lowers fever (refrigerant, also reducing thirst induced by fever).
Has been used for congestive fever, high fever in infectious diseases, tuberculosis, chronic bronchitis, excessive sweating, dry throat, hacking cough, dizziness, lumbago, pneumonia, morning sickness, measles, premature ejaculation, urinary problems.
Has been used externally as a mouth wash for mouth ulcers.

COMMENT: Has an ancient history of use in Chinese medicine. First recorded in Chinese literature in 200 BC.

©2000 by Ernestina Parziale, CH