Introduction of Chuan Bei Mu:Tendrilleaf Fritillary Bulb or Bulbus Fritillarie Cirrhosae.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Tendrilleaf Fritillary Bulb, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source five plant species, ①.Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don, ②.Fritillaria unibracteata Hsiao et K.C.Hsia., ③.Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim.ex Batal., ④.Fritillaria delavayi Franch., ⑤.Fritillaria cirrhosa D. Don var. Ecirrhosa Franch., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of these five plant species, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of these five plant species, the features of the herb Tendrilleaf Fritillary Bulb, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Bulbus Fritillarie Cirrhosae(Tendrilleaf Fritillary Bulb).

Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don.:flowering plant Pin Yin Name: Chuān Bèi Mǔ.
 English Name: Tendrilleaf Fritillary Bulb.
 Latin Name: Bulbus Fritillarie Cirrhosae.
 Property and flavor: slight cold, bitter, sweet.

 Brief introduction: The herb Bulbus Fritillarie Cirrhosae is the dried bulb of Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don, Fritillaria unibracteata Hsiao et K.C.Hsia., Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim.ex Batal. Or Fritillaria delavayi Franchi., used (1).to clear heat, resolve phlegm, moisten the lung for relieving dry cough due to lung heat and chronic cough with bloody sputum in cases of phthisis, and (2).to dissipate nodulation for treating boils, sores, mastitis, and lung abscess.

 Botanical source: The herb Bulbus Fritillarie Cirrhosae (Tendrilleaf Fritillary Bulb) is the dried bulb of Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don., Fritillaria unibracteata Hsiao et K.C. Hsia, Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim. Or Fritillaria delavayi Franchi., they are plants of Fritillaria L. genus, the Liliaceae family (lily family) of the Liliales order. It is also known as Unibract Fritillary Bulb, Bulb of Unibract Fritillary, Bulb of Tendrilleaf Fritillary, Bulb of Przewalsk Fritillary, Bulb of Delavay Fritillary or Chuān Bèi Mǔ.

 Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don.:flowering plant Herbal classic book defined the herb Bulbus Fritillarie Cirrhosae(Tendrilleaf Fritillary Bulb) as the dried bulb of:(1). Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don. or (2). Fritillaria unibracteata Hsiao et K.C.Hsia., (3). Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim.ex Batal., (4). Fritillaria delavayi Franch., (5).Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don var. ecirrhosa Franch. These 5 commonly used species are introduced:

(1).Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don.


 Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don.:flowering plant Botanical description: Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don is also known as Juǎn Yè Bèi Mǔ, or Curled-Leaf Fritillary Bulb. It is a perennial herb with great morphological changes. Squamous bulbs are ovoid, composed of 2 scales, 1~1.5 cm in diameter. Leaves are usually opposite, occasionally a few are scattered or whorled in the middle part; leaf blades are strip-shaped to strip-lanceolate, and the apex is slightly curly or unconvoluted.

 Flowers are solitary and grow on stem apex, purple to yellowish-green, usually have small squares, a few have spots or stripes; each flower has 3 foliate (leaf-like) bracts, long and narrow, 2~4 mm wide; 6 tepals, 3~4 cm long, 3 bracts in the out floral whorl, 1~1.4 cm wide, 3 bracts in the inner floral whorl, subobovate or ellipsoid obovoid, up to 1.8 cm wide. Nectary fossae are distinctly protruding on the back; stamens are about 3/5 of tepals in length, and anthers are subbasal, and filaments have papillae more or less. Stigma lobes are 3~5 mm long.

 Capsularfruit ribs have narrow wings, 1~1.5 mm wide. Its flowering period is from May to July, and the fruiting period is from August to October.

 Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don..:flowering plant Ecological environment: The plant grows in thickets, grasslands, river sides, valleys, and other wetlands or rock crevices. Curly leaf fritillaria is mainly distributed in the west-south area of China, and other areas.

 Growth characteristics: Fritillaria cirrhosa prefers a cool and warm climate and grows in bushes and grass in areas of the high, cold mountain area, at altitudes of 1,600~3,000 meters. Better choose a field with deep soil layers, and humus-rich sandy loam for cultivation. Avoid waterlogging and high temperatures.

 Characters of herbs: The bulbs of Fritillaria unibracteata Hsiao et K.C.Hsia., Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don., Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim are respectively known as Song Bei and Qing Bei according to different traits. The bulb of Fritillaria delavayi Franch is known as Lu Bei. The quality of Song Bei and Qing Bei is better than Lu Bei, and Song Bei is better than Qing Bei.

 The dried bulb of Song Bei is conical or subsphaeroidal, pointed or slightly pointed at the top, 0.3~0.8 cm high, 3~9 mm in diameter, and the smallest grains are known as Zhen Zhu Bei (pearl shell bulbs). The surface is whitish (almost white). The outer layer has 2 scaly leaves, one scaly leaf is large, slightly horseshoe-shaped (U-shaped), and another scaly leaf is small, slightly lanceolate, and relatively amplexicaular (stem-clasping), with several small scaly leaves inside. At the center of the bottom, there is a small and hard bulb plate, under which a few fibrous root marks remain. No matter the grain size, it can stand upright, and the top is not cracked. The texture of the herb is hard and brittle (crisp), rich mealiness (rich in powder), and the fracture surface is white and granular, rich mealiness (rich in powder). The herb has a weak smell, and it tastes slightly bitter. The herb of a better grade is solid and firm in texture, grains are uniform and tidy, with no cracking at the top, white, and it has sufficient powders.

 The dried bulb of Qing Bei is oblate or slightly conical, many grains are distorted, 0.4~1.4 cm high, and 0.4~1.6 cm in diameter. The appearance is white and light yellowish, the top is cracked, flat or slightly pointed, and the scale leaves in the outer layer are in 2 buds, almost equal in size, wrapped around, the top is cracked, there are heart buds and 2~3 small scaly leaves, and thin cylindrical stem residue is in the scale leaves. The fracture surface is pink white, granular, rich in mealiness (rich in powder), and firm. The herb has no smell and a mild taste. The herb of a better grade has small, uniform grains, is white, and has rich mealiness (sufficient powder).

 Pharmacological actions: ①.antitussive and expectorant effects; ②.antihypertensive effect; ③.inhibit the growth and reproduction of Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus.

 Medicinal efficacy: Clear heat and moisten the lung, reduce phlegm and stop cough, indicated for the treatment of lung heat and dry cough, dry cough with little phlegm, Yin deficiency and over-strained cough, cough sputum with blood.

 Administration of Bulbus Fritillarie Cirrhosae (Chuān Bèi Mǔ): 
 
Reference: Administration Guide of Bulbus Fritillarie Cirrhosae (Chuān Bèi Mǔ)
TCM Books: ①.Internally:3~9 grams; ②.1~3 qian(about 3~9 grams); ③.3~9 grams, water decoction; prepare to finely ground herb powder and prepared to pill, powder.Externally:proper amount, prepare to finely ground herb powder and apply stick.
 Precautions: should not be combined with herbs of Aconiti species.

(2).Fritillaria unibracteata Hsiao et K.C.Hsia.


 Fritillaria unibracteata Hsiao et K.C.Hsia.:flowering plant Botanical description: Fritillaria unibracteata Hsiao et K.C.Hsia is also known as An Zi Bèi Mǔ, or Dark Purple Fritillary Bulb. It is a perennial herb, and the plant grows up to 15~25 cm high. The squamous bulb is globose or conical, consisting of 2 scales, 6~8 mm in diameter. The stem is upright, simple, and glabrous. 1~2 pairs of leaves on the lower part are opposite, 1~2 leaves on the upper part are scattered or opposite, sessile, strip-shaped or strip-lanceolate, 3.6~6.5 cm long; 3~7 mm wide, the apex is pointed, not curly.

 Flowers are solitary and grow on top of the stem, dark purple (deep purple), have yellow-brown small square patches; 1 foliate (leaf-like) bract, and the apex is not curly; 6 tepals, in 2 whorls, 2.5~2.7 cm long, 3 tepals inside are obovate-oblong, about 1 cm wide, and 3 tepals outside are nearly oblong, about 6 mm wide. The nectary fossa is slightly protuberant or not prominent; 6 stamens, length is about half of the perianth, anthers are subbasal, filaments have papillae or not; stigma is 3-lobed, lobes are short and abducent, 0.5~1 mm long.

 Capsularfruit is oblong, 1~1.5 cm long, 1~1.2 cm wide, and has 6 ribs, the wings on the ribs are very narrow, about 1 mm wide. Its flowering period is in June, and the fruiting period is in August.

 Fritillaria unibracteata Hsiao et K.C.Hsia.:flowering plant Ecological environment: The Dark Purple fritillaria grows in grassland, in areas at altitudes between 3,200~4,500 meters above sea level. The plant is mainly distributed in the southwest and northwest areas of China.

(3).Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim.ex Batal.


 Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim.:flowering plant Botanical description: Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim.ex Batal is also known as Gan Su Bèi Mǔ, or Gan Su Fritillary Bulb. A perennial herb, the plant grows up to 20~40 cm high. The squamous bulb is conical, consisting of 2 scales 6–13 mm in diameter. Leaves on the lowest part are usually 2 and opposite, leaves on the upper part are 2~3 and scattered; leaf blades are strip-shaped, 3~7 cm long, 3~4 mm wide, and the apex is usually not curly.

 The simple flower is terminal, rarely having 2 flowers, pale yellow, with purple-black spots; 1 foliate (leaf-like) bract, the apex is slightly curly or unconvoluted; tepals are 2~3 cm long, 3 internal tepals are 6~7 mm wide, nectary fossa is inconspicuous. Stamens are about half the length of the perianth. Filaments have papillae, and stigma lobes are less than 1 mm long.

 Capsularfruit ribs have narrow wings, about 1 mm wide. Its flowering period is from June to July, and the fruiting period is in August.

 Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim.:flowering plant Ecological environment: Fritillaria przewalskii Maxim grows in shrubs or grassland, in areas at altitudes of 2,800 to 4,400 meters above sea level. The plant is mainly distributed in the north-west areas, and the upper reaches of the Yangtze River in China.

(4).Fritillaria delavayi Franch.


 Fritillaria delavayi Franch.:flowering plant Botanical description: Fritillaria delavayi Franch is also known as Suō Shā Bèi Mǔ. It is a perennial herb, and the plant grows up to 17~35 cm high. Squamous bulbs are oblong ovoid, consisting of 2~3 scales, 1~2 cm in diameter. Leaves are alternate, 3~5 leaves (including leaf-like bracts) closely grow in the middle part or the upper part of the plant; leaf blades are narrowly ovate to ovate-elliptic, 2~7 cm long, 1~3 cm wide, and the apex is not curly.

 Simple flowers are terminal, broadly campanulate (bell-shaped), slightly pendulous, pale yellow, and have reddish-brown spots or small square patches; the perianth is 3.2~4.5 cm long, and 1.2~1.5 cm wide, and the inner three tepals are slightly longer and wider than the outer three tepals. Stamens are about half the length of the perianth, and filaments have no papillae; the length of the stigma lobe is about 1 mm.

 The wings on the capsularfruit ribs are about 1 mm wide, and the persistent perianth usually more or less wraps the capsularfruit. Its flowering period is from June to July, and the fruiting period is from August to September.

 Fritillaria delavayi Franch.:flowering plant Ecological environment: Fritillaria delavayi Franch grows in the crevices of rocks on the flowing sand beach, in areas at altitudes between 3,800~4,700 meters above sea level. The plant is mainly distributed in the northwest and southwest areas of China.

 Characters of herbs: The dried bulb of Lu Bei is long conical and similar to a horse tooth, pointed at the top, 0.7~2.5 cm high, and about 0.5~2.5 cm in diameter. The surface is whitish (almost white) or light brownish yellow, has brown spots, forming tiger stripes, commonly known as Hu Pi Bei (tiger skin bulbs). The 2 scaly leaves in the outer layer are close in size, and the top is cracked and slightly pointed, and the base is slightly pointed or obtuse. The fracture surface is pink-white, floured, and firm. The herb has a weak smell and a mild taste. The herb of a better grade has a solid and firm texture, white.

(5).Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don var. ecirrhosa Franch.


 Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don var. ecirrhosa Franch.:flowering plant Botanical description: Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don var. ecirrhosa Franch is also known as Kāng Dìng Bèi Mǔ, or Kang Ding Fritillary Bulb. The plant is similar to Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don., but the plants and squamous bulbs are usually larger. 1~2 pairs of leaves on the bottom part are opposite, most of the rest leaves are scattered, and the apex is not curly. 1 foliate bract, rarely 3. Flowers have apparent purple square spots.

 Fritillaria cirrhosa D.Don var. ecirrhosa Franch.:flowering plant Ecological environment: Fritillaria cirrhosa D. Don var. Ecirrhosa Franch grows in the area at altitudes of 3,500~4,100 meters above sea level, in river forest or grassland. The plant is mainly distributed in the Kangding area of Sichuan, China.
 

 
  

 

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References:
  • 1.Introduction of Chuan Bei Mu:Tendrilleaf Fritillary Bulb or Bulbus Fritillarie Cirrhosae.

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