Herb latin name: Salix japonica
Family: Salicaceae (Willow Family)
Medicinal use of Salix japonica:The fresh bark of all members of this genus contains salicin, which probably decomposes into salicylic acid (closely related to aspirin) in the human body. This is used as an anodyne and febrifuge.
Description of the plant:
Habitat of the herb:Hills and mountains of C. Japan.
Edible parts of Salix japonica:Inner bark - raw or cooked. It can be dried, ground into a powder and then added to cereal flour for use in making bread etc. A very bitter flavour, it is a famine food that is only used when all else fails. Young shoots and flower buds - cooked. Not very palatable.
Propagation of the herb:Seed - must be surface sown as soon as it is ripe in late spring. It has a very short viability, perhaps as little as a few days. Cuttings of mature wood of the current year's growth, November to February in a sheltered outdoor bed or planted straight into their permanent position and given a good weed-suppressing mulch. Very easy. Plant into their permanent positions in the autumn. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, June to August in a frame. Very easy.
Cultivation of Salix japonica:Hills and mountains of C. Japan.
Known hazards of Salix japonica:None known
Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.