Herb: Cang Zhu


Latin name: Atractylodes lancea


Synonyms: Atractylis lancea, Atractylis ovata, Atractylodes chinensis, Atractylodes ovata


Family: Compositae



Medicinal use of Cang Zhu:

This plant is widely used in traditional Chinese medicine. The root is a bitter-sweet tonic herb that acts mainly upon the digestive system. The root is antibacterial, antiemetic, appetizer, digestive, diuretic, hypoglycaemic, sedative, stomachic and tonic. It is often used in conjunction with other herbs such as Codonopsis tangshen and Glycyrrhiza uralensis. It is used in the treatment of poor appetite, digestive disorders such as dyspepsia, abdominal distension and chronic diarrhoea, rheumatoid arthritis, oedema, spontaneous sweating and night blindness. The roots are harvested in the autumn and baked for use in tonics.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Perennial


Height:
100 cm
(3 1/4 foot)

Flovering:
July to
October

Habitat of the herb:

Grassland, forests, thickets and rock crevices at elevations of 700 - 2500 metres.

Edible parts of Cang Zhu:

Root - raw or cooked. Exceedingly rich in vitamin A, it also contains 1.5% essential oils.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - sow spring in a cold frame and only just cover the seed. Prick out the seedlings when they are large enough to handle and plant them out into their permanent positions in the following spring or early summer.

Cultivation of Cang Zhu:

Grassland, forests, thickets and rock crevices at elevations of 700 - 2500 metres.

Known hazards of Atractylodes lancea:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.