Introduction of He Zi:Terminalia Fruit or Fructus Chebulae.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Terminalia Fruit, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source two plant species, ①.Terminalia chebula Retz., ②.Terminalia chebula Retz.var.tomentella Kurt., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of these two plant species, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of these two plant species, the features of the herb Terminalia Fruit, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Fructus Chebulae(Terminalia Fruit).

Fructus Chebulae:herb photo Pin Yin Name: Hē Zǐ.
 English Name: Terminalia Fruit.
 Latin Name: Fructus Chebulae.
 Property and flavor: warm nature, tastes bitter, sour, puckery.

 Brief introduction: The Herb Fructus Chebulae is the dried ripe fruit of Terminalia chebula Retz. Or Terminalia chebula var.tomentella Kurt., used as an anti-diarrheic and antitussive agent for the treatment of chronic diarrhea or dysentery, persistent cough, and hoarse voice. The herb is commonly known as Fructus Chebulae, Terminalia Fruit, Hē Zǐ.

 Botanical source: Common herbal classics defined the herb Fructus Chebulae(He Zi) as the dry ripen fruit of the Combretaceae family plant species (1). Terminalia chebula Retz., or (2). Terminalia chebula Retz. var. tomentella Kurt. They are plants of the Terminalia Linn. Genus, the Combretaceae family (white mangrove family) of the Myrtiflorae order. These 2 commonly used species are introduced:

(1).Terminalia chebula Retz.

 Terminalia chebula Retz.:fruiting plant Botanical description: The Terminalia chebula Retz., is a plant of the Combretaceae family (white mangrove family) and Terminalia genus, it is commonly known as "Terminalia chebula", or "Máo Hē Zǐ". arbor, it grows up to 30 meters. Branches are nearly glabrous, lenticels are slender, white or yellowish, young branches are yellow-brown, tomentose. Leaves are alternate or subopposite; petiole is sturdy, 1.8~2.3 cm long, 2~4 glands from 1~5 mm distal; leaves are ovate or elliptic, 7~14 cm long, 4.5~8.5 cm wide, apex is short, base is blunt or cuneate, slanted, entire, light green with yellow, about 3.5 mm long, 5 teeth cracked, about 1 mm long, triangular, glabrous outside, inner is yellowish-brown hairy; petals are absent; 10 stamens, above the calyx, anthers are small, elliptic. The lower part of the ovary, 1 room, cylindrical, about 1 mm long, coat, dark brown when dry, long and thick style, cone tip.

 Terminalia chebula Retz.:fruiting plant Drupe, oval or elliptic, 2.4~4.5 cm long, 1.9~2.3 cm in diameter, cyan, rough, glabrous, dark brown when mature, usually with 5 blunt edges. It is flowering in May, fruiting period is from July to September.

 Ecological environment: The Terminalia chebula Retz., grows in a sparse forest at an altitude of 800~1,800 meters above sea level. The plant grows on the roadside or near the village. Geographical distribution: This species is mainly distributed in the west and southwest of Yunnan, Zhujiang river area, and other areas of China.

 Growth characteristics: The plant Terminalia chebula Retz prefers to warm, high temperature and moist climate. Drought and frost resistance, it prefers sunshine. It is mostly found in an area with an altitude between 950~1,850 meters above sea level. The annual rainfall is about 1,000~1,500 mm. The soil requirements are not very strict, but appropriate to choose loose fertile, good drainage loam for cultivation.

 Terminalia Fruit:herb photo Characters of herbs: The fruit is oblong or oval, 2~4 cm long, and 2~2.5 cm in diameter. The surface is yellowish-brown or dark-brown, slightly glossy, with 5~6 longitudinal ridges and irregular wrinkles, and the base has a round stalk mark. The texture of the herb is solid and firm. The pulp is 0.2~0.4 cm thick, yellowish-brown or yellowish-brown. The nutlet is 1.5~2.5 cm long and 1~1.5 cm in diameter, light yellow, coarse and rough, hard. The seeds are long and narrow spindle-shaped, about 1 cm long and 0.2~0.4 cm in diameter; The seed coat is yellowish-brown, with 2 cotyledons. Fold color, overlapping and rolling. The herb has a slight odor, it tastes sour puckery, and then sweet. The herb of better grade has thick pulp, firm and hard, glossy, yellow-brown.

(2).Terminalia chebula Retz. var. tomentella Kurt.

 Terminalia chebula Retz. var. tomentella Kurt.:fruiting plant Botanical description: The Terminalia chebula Retz. var. tomentella Kurt., is a plant of the Combretaceae family (white mangrove family) and Terminalia genus, it is commonly known as "Terminalia chebula Retz. var. tomentella Kurt.", or "Róng Máo Hē Zǐ (Hairy Terminalia chebula)". It is normally identified as one varietas of the Terminalia chebula Retz., and has differences from it.

 The difference between this varietas and the Terminalia chebula Retz. is that the young branch and the young leaf are all flat and pubescent in copper; the scorpion is longer than the flower; the flower bud is glabrous; the fruit is ovate and less than 2.5 cm long. Flowering period is from June to August, fruiting period is from August to October.

 Ecological environment: The Terminalia chebula Retz. Var. Tomentella Kurt., grows in the sunny slopes, forest edge at an altitude 800~1,100 meters above sea level. Geographical distribution: This species is mainly distributed in Yunnan province and other areas of China.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.antibacterial effect, effective for 4~5 kinds of Bacillus dysenteriae, water decoction is effective on various kinds of Bacillus dysenteriae, the stronger effect on Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Bacillus diphtheriae, also has an effect on Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, pneumococcus, hemolytic streptococcus, Bacillus proteus, Bacterium aertryke; ②.inhibitory effect of the tumor; ③.protecting white blood cells; ④.effect of antispasmodic on smooth muscle, tannin and other purgatory components show first purgatory effect and then astringent action, similar to rhubarb. ⑤.extract of Fructus Chebulae has an inactivation effect on influenza. ⑥.good anti-diarrhea effect.

 Medicinal efficacy: Astringents and relieving diarrhea, astringing lung for relieving cough, downbear fire and relieve sore throat, descending Qi. It is indicated for chronic diarrhea, protracted dysentery, hemafecia (hematochezia, passing blood in stool), archoptosis (anal prolapse), metrorrhagia and metrostaxis, morbid leukorrhea,  spermatorrhea (seminal emission), frequent urination, dyspnea with cough of lung deficiency, dyspnea with cough and phlegm, unstoppable chronic cough, chronic cough and aphonia (chronic cough and loss of voice), pharyngalgia and hoarseness, etc.   

 Administration of Fructus Chebulae (Hē Zǐ): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Fructus Chebulae (Hē Zǐ)
TCM Books: ①.Internally:3~10 grams; ②.Internally:water decoction, 1~3 qian (about 3~9 grams), or prepare to pill, powder. Externally:fumigation wash with water decoction; ③.Internally:water decoction,3~6 grams;or prepared to pill, powder.

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