Introduction of Bai Bu:Radix Stemonae or Stemona Root.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Stemona Root, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source three plant species, ①.Stemona sessilifolia (Miq.) Miq., ②.Stemona japonica (BL.) Miq., ③.Stemona tuberosa Lour., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of these three plants, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of these three plants, the features of the herb Stemona Root, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Radix Stemonae(Stemona Root).

Stemona sessilifolia:drawing of plant and root Pin Yin Name: Bǎi Bù.
 English Name: Stemona Root.
 Latin Name: Radix Stemonae.
 Property and flavor: slight warm, sweet, bitter.

 Brief introduction: The herb Radix Stemonae is the steamed and dried tuberous root of Stemona sessilifolia (Miq.) Miq., Stemona japonica (BL.) Miq.r Stemona tuberosa Lour., used to moisten the lung and relieve acute and chronic cough, and externally to kill trichomonads and lice.

 Botanical source: The herb Radix Stemonae (Stemona Root) is the steamed and dried tuberous root of ①.Stemona sessilifolia (Miq.) Franch.et Sav., or ②.Stemona japonica (BL.) Miq., or ③.Stemona tuberosa Lour, are plants of the Stemona Lour. Genus, the Stemonaceae family of the Pandanales order. These three commonly used species are introduced:

(1).Stemona sessilifolia (Miq.) Franch.et Sav.


 Stemona sessilifolia Miq.:growing plant Botanical description: Stemona sessilifolia (Miq.) Franch.et Sav is a plant of the Stemonaceae family and Stemona Lour. Genus, is commonly known as Stemona sessilifolia, or Zhi Li Bai Bu. The plant is a perennial herb, and it grows up to 30–60 cm high. Root tubers are tufty, succulent, and fusiform (spindle-shaped). The stem is upright and unbranched. Leaves are whorled, usually 3~4 leaves per whorl; with short petiole or subsessile; leaf blades are oval to elliptical, 3.5~5.5 cm long, 1.8~3.8 cm wide, the apex is tapering or acuminate, the base is cuneate; leaf veins are usually 5, and the 3 veins in the center are especially distinct.

 Flowers are axillary, mostly grow in the axil of the scale leaf on the lower stem, pedicel is thin and long; 4 tepals are ovate-lanceolate; 4 stamens are purple; the commissure is enlarged as a lanceolate annex; the ovary is oval, stigma is short, without style. Capsularfruit. Its flowering period is from April to May, and the fruiting period is in July.

 Ecological environment: The plant grows in mountain forests or bamboo forests. It is mainly distributed in the eastern areas, the Hanjiang River area, the middle reaches of the Yangtze River, and other areas of China.

 Growth characteristics: The plant prefers a warm, humid, shady, and cool environment, is tolerant of cold, and avoids water logging. It is appropriate to choose a field with deep soil layers, loose and fertile, humus-rich sandy loam, and good drainage for cultivation.

 Stemona Root:herb photo Characters of herbs: The root tuber is fusiform (spindle-shaped), has slender, long upper ends. Some lower ends are in long caudate curving shapes, 5~17 cm long, and 0.5~1 cm in diameter. The surface is yellowish white or light khaki, with irregular deep vertical grooves and occasional cross wrinkles. The texture of the herb is fragile, tough and soft after being affected by dampness, the fracture surface is flat, corneous, and light yellowish brown or yellowish-white, the cortex is broad and wide, the stele is flat and small. The herb has a mild smell, and it tastes sweet and bitter. The herb of a better grade is thick, and the texture of the herb is solid and firm.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.Antibacterial effect: In vitro test showed that Stemona Root decoctions and Stemona Root alcoholic extracts have inhibitory effects on many pathogenic bacteria, such as pneumococcus, Streptococcus haemolyticus type B, meningococcus, Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus albus, and Bacillus dysenteriae; ②.Insecticidal effect:water saps and ethanol saps of Stemona japonica and other varieties have the killing effect on larvae of mosquito and fly, head lice, agricultural lice, and bedbugs.

 Medicinal efficacy: Moistening lung and relieve cough, insect disinfestation, indicated for bronchocephalitis (whooping cough), phthisis and cough (pulmonary tuberculosis and cough), pinworm, Trichomonas vaginalis, head lice, and scabies.

 Administration of Radix Stemonae (Bǎi Bù): 
 
Reference: Administration Guide of Radix Stemonae (Bǎi Bù)
TCM Books: ①.Internally:3~9 grams; ②.1~3 qian (about 3~9 grams); ③.3~10 grams, water decoction; soaking in wine or prepare to finely ground herb powder and prepared to pill, powder.Externally:wash with water decoction or prepare to finely ground herb powder and apply stick.

(2).Stemona japonica (Bl.) Miq.


 Stemona japonica Bl.Miq.:drawing of plant and root Botanical description: Stemona japonica (Bl.) Miq is a plant of the Stemonaceae family and Stemona Lour. Genus, it is commonly known as Stemona japonica (Bl.) Miq., or Wan Sheng Bai Bu (Sprawl Stemona). A perennial herb, the plant grows up to 60~90 cm high, and the whole plant is glabrous. The root is succulent, usually spindly (long and lean), and several to dozens are clustered. The stem's lower part is upright, and the stem's upper part is vine-shaped. Leaves are whorled, usually 3~4 per whorl; leaf petioles are 1.5~3 cm long; leaf blades are oval or ovate-lanceolate, 4~9 cm long, 1.8~4 cm wide, the apex is pointed or acuminate, the base is round or truncated, entire; 5~9 leaf veins. The pedicel is filamentous, 1.5~2.5 cm long; its base is adherent to the leaf midvein, each stalk usually has 1 solitary flower; 4 perianths, pale green, ovate-lanceolate to ovate; 4 stamens, purple, filaments are short, anthers are introverted, linear, apex has an arrow-shaped appendage; the ovary is ovoid, very small, and without style. Capsularfruit is broadly ovate and flat, and there are several oblong oval seeds inside. Its flowering period is in May, and the fruiting period is in July.

 Growth characteristics: The plant grows in bushes on sunny slopes or in bamboo forests. It is mainly distributed in the eastern area, the middle reaches of the Yellow River, the middle reaches of the Yangtze River, and other areas of China.

 Characters of herbs: The root tuber is narrow and thin at both ends, and the surface is pale grayish-white, has many irregular wrinkles and cross wrinkles. It tastes bitter. The herb of a better grade is thick, and the texture of the herb is solid and firm.

(3).Stemona tuberosa Lour.


 Stemona tuberosa Lour.:drawing of plant and root 02 Botanical description: Stemona tuberosa Lour is a plant of the Stemonaceae family and Stemona Lour. Genus, it is commonly known as Stemona sessilifolia, or Dui Ye Bai Bu. A perennial climbing herb, the plant grows up to 5 meters high. The tuber root is succulent, fusiform (spindle-shaped), or cylindrical, and the stem is curled. Leaves are usually opposite; petioles are 3~10 cm long; leaf blades are broadly ovate, 8~30 cm long, 2.5~10 cm wide, base is shallow-cordate, entire or slightly serrated; 7~11 leaf veins. The pedicel is axillary, not adhere to the mid-rib of the leaf, flowers are solitary, or 2~3 flowers form a raceme, yellow-green with purple stripes, anther's appendage is subulate or lanceolate. Capsularfruit is obovate and flat. Its flowering period is from May to June, and the fruiting period is from July to August.

 Growth characteristics: The plant grows in a sunny bush. It is mainly distributed in the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River, the southeast coastal area and the southwest area of China.

 Characters of herbs: The root tuber is fusiform (spindle-shaped) or elongated, 8~24 cm long, and 0.8~2 cm in diameter. The surface is light yellowish brown to grayish brown, with shallow vertical wrinkles or irregular vertical grooves. The texture of the herb is solid and firm, the fracture surface is yellow-white to dark brown, the large stele, and pith are whitish (similar white), and the herb tastes bitter. The herb of a better grade is thick, and the texture of the herb is solid and firm.
 

 
  

 

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References:
  • 1.Introduction of Bai Bu:Radix Stemonae or Stemona Root.

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