Herb: Asiatic Sweetleaf


Latin name: Symplocos paniculata


Synonyms: Prunus paniculata, Symplocos chinensis, Symplocos crataegoides


Family: Symplocaceae (Sweetleaf Family)



Medicinal use of Asiatic Sweetleaf:

The bark is astringent, cooling and tonic. It is useful in the treatment of menorrhagia, bowel complaints, eye diseases and ulcers. It is also used as a gargle for giving firmness to spongy and bleeding gums. The juice of the bark is applied externally to sprains and muscular swellings.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Deciduous
Shrub

Height:
4 m
(13 feet)

Flovering:
May to
June


Scent:
Scented
Shrub

Habitat of the herb:

Forests and shrubberies at elevations of 1000 - 2700 metres, Pakistan to S. W. China and Burma. Slopes in mixed forests at elevations of 800 - 2500 metres.

Edible parts of Asiatic Sweetleaf:

Fruit - cooked. Used in jams, jellies and sauce. The fruit is about 8mm in diameter.

Other uses of the herb:

A yellow or red dye is obtained from the leaves and bark. We have no specific information for this species but many species in this genus contain alum and can be used as mordants when dyeing. Wood - white, soft to moderately hard. close grained, liable to twist and split when seasoning. Of possible use in turnery.

Propagation of Asiatic Sweetleaf:

Seed - best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe. Stored seed requires stratification and is best sown in a cold frame in late winter, it can take 12 months to germinate. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in the cold frame for their first winter. Plant out in late spring or early summer. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 7 - 10cm with a heel, July/August in individual pots in a cold frame. Roots are formed in about 4 weeks. Good percentage.

Cultivation of the herb:

Forests and shrubberies at elevations of 1000 - 2700 metres, Pakistan to S. W. China and Burma. Slopes in mixed forests at elevations of 800 - 2500 metres.

Known hazards of Symplocos paniculata:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.