Herb: Xu Duan


Latin name: Dipsacus japonicus


Family: Dipsacaceae (Teasel Family)



Medicinal use of Xu Duan:

The roots are antirheumatic, cancer, emmenagogue, galactofuge, haemostatic, hepatic and tonic. It is used as a kidney tonic. A decoction of the root is used in the treatment of rheumatoid arthralgia, traumatic injuries, backache and weak knees, seminal emissions, polyuria and also to secure abortions. The seed is diuretic. The plant is used in the treatment of rheumatism. It also has a long history of folk use in the treatment of breast cancer.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Biennial/Perennial


Height:
75 cm
(2 feet)

Flovering:
August to
September

Habitat of the herb:

Wild places and roadsides in China. Sunny places at elevations of 300 - 1500 metres in central and southern Japan.

Edible parts of Xu Duan:

Young leaves - cooked. A famine food, used when all else fails.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - we have no details but suggest sowing it in a greenhouse in early spring. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.

Cultivation of Xu Duan:

Wild places and roadsides in China. Sunny places at elevations of 300 - 1500 metres in central and southern Japan.

Known hazards of Dipsacus japonicus:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.