Herb: Porcelain Berry

Latin name: Ampelopsis brevipedunculata

Synonyms: Ampelopsis heterophylla amurensis, Cissus brevipedunculata

Family: Vitaceae (Grape Family)

Medicinal use of Porcelain Berry:

The fresh fruits, roots and leaves are antiphlogistic, depurative and febrifuge. Resolves clots. It is used externally in the treatment of boils, abscesses and ulcers, traumatic bruises and aches.

Description of the plant:


20 m
(66 feet)

July to

Habitat of the herb:

Thickets in hills all over Japan.

Edible parts of Porcelain Berry:

Leaf buds - cooked. Leaves and stems - cooked. Fruit - raw or cooked. The fruit is 6 - 8mm in diameter and is carried in small bunches like grapes. Not very palatable.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - sow in pots in a cold frame in the autumn or stratify for 6 weeks at 5C and sow in the spring. Germination can be quite slow, sometimes taking more than a year. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. When they are more than 20cm tall, they can be planted out into their permanent positions, preferably in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 7 - 10cm long, July/August in a frame. Cuttings or eyes in late autumn or winter. Either place them in the ground in a greenhouse or cold frame, or put them in pots. An eye cutting is where you have just one bud at the top and a short length of stem with a small part of the bark removed. These normally root well and grow away vigorously, being ready to plant into their permanent positions the following autumn. Layering into pots in late summer. Partially sever the stem in spring and then lift the new plants in the autumn.

Cultivation of Porcelain Berry:

Thickets in hills all over Japan.

Known hazards of Ampelopsis brevipedunculata:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.