Introduction of Qin Pi:Ash Bark or Cortex Fraxini.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Ash Bark, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source four plant species, ①.Fraxinus rhynchophylla Hance., ②.Fraxinus szaboana Lingelsh., ③.Fraxinus chinensis Roxb., ④.Fraxinus stuylosa Lingelsh., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of these four plant species, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of these four plant species, the features of the herb Ash Bark, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Cortex Fraxini(Ash Bark).

Cortex Fraxini:herb photo Pin Yin Name: Qín Pí.
 English Name: Ash Bark.
 Latin Name: Cortex Fraxini.
 Property and flavor: cold, bitter, puckery.

 Brief introduction: The Herb Cortex Fraxini is the dried branch bark or trunk bark of Fraxinus rhynchophylla Hance, Fraxinus chinensis Roxb., or Fraxinus stylosa Lingelsh.(family Oleaceae), used for treating acute dysentery and inflammation of the eye. The herb is commonly known as Cortex Fraxini, Ash Bark, Qín Pí.

 Botanical source: The herb Cortex Fraxini(Ash Bark) is the dried cortex or tree bark of species (1). Fraxinus rhynchophylla Hance., (2). Fraxinus szaboana Lingelsh., (3). Fraxinus chinensis Roxb., or (4). Fraxinus stuylosa Lingelsh., they are plants of the Fraxinus L. genus, the Oleaceae family of the Contortae order. These 4 commonly used species are introduced as:

(1).Fraxinus rhynchophylla Hance.

 Fraxinus rhynchophylla Hance.:branch and leaves Botanical description: It is commonly known as F.Chinensis Roxb.var.rhynchopylla(Hance)Hemsl., or Dà Yè Chén, Hua Qu Liu, or Big Leaf Ash. Large deciduous trees, 12~15 meters tall. Bark grayish brown, smooth, lobed when old. Winter buds broadly ovate. Apex pointed, dark brown. Glossy, insides densely covered with brown fleecy fluff. Branch light yellow, straight, glabrous, last year branch dark brown, lenticels. Leaf axis masks shallow groove, lobular apex with joints, sometimes on nodes. Clusters of brown fleecy pubescence; 5~7 lobules, leathery, broadly ovate, obovate, or ovoid lanceolate, 3~11 cm long, 2~6 cm wide, vegetative branches lobule is wider, lobules significantly greater than the lateral, below 1 to the minimum, apex acuminate, flash point, or the tail, base obtuse, leaf irregular coarsely serrate, tooth slightly bend inward, sometimes waves, usually lower nearly entire, white pilose on along the vein axils, gradually bald net. Panicles terminal or axillary at annual shoot tip, ca. 10 cm long; Bracts lanceolate, ca. 5 mm long, caducous; Pedicels ca. 5 mm; Male flowers and hermaphroditic flowers; Calyx shallow cup-shaped, ca. 1 mm long, sepals triangular glabrous; No crown; Bisexual flowers with 2 stamens, ca. 4 mm; Pistil with short style, stigma 2-forked deeply lobed; Male calyx small, filaments fine, up to 3 mm; Samara linear, apex nut ca. 1 cm long, slightly raised; With persistent calyx. Its flowering period is from April to May, fruiting from September to October.

 Fraxinus rhynchophylla Hance.:leaves and seeds Ecological environment: The tree grows on slopes, riverbanks, and roadsides below an elevation of 1,500 meters above sea level. It is a light-loving tree species, suitable for the soil of deep fertile and good water conditions. The root system is developed and has strong cold resistance, and can adapt to a wide range of temperature. The annual average temperature is 5.5~14.4 ℃, the highest temperature is 47.6 ℃ in July, and the lowest temperature is over -40 ℃ in January. But the ability to withstand atmospheric drought is poor. When the relative humidity is about 45% in July-August and the temperature is above 38 ℃, the leaves will turn yellow or even fall off. It can still grow in soil when its salt content is less than 0.5%.

 Distribution range: The tree distributes in north China and the Yellow River basin provinces. In China, it mainly grows in the north and south of Tianshan Mountain in Xinjiang. It grows well in Yili and the southern margin of the Junggar basin and Urumqi in the north and is also widely cultivated. It also grows in Hami and Turpan in the east and Korla, Aksu, Kashgar, and Hotan in the Tarim Basin in the south.

 Growth characteristics: The plant prefers a warm and humid climate, prefers sunlight. The soil requirements are not strict, it can grow in yellow soil, yellow-brown soil, and other soil.

 Ash Bark:herb photo Characters of herbs: The bark of branches is rolled or grooved, 10~60 cm long and 1.5~3 mm thick, the outer surface is grayish white, grayish brown to dark brown or patchy, flat or slightly rough, with grayish white dot lenticels and fine oblique wrinkles, and some with branch marks, the inner surface is yellowish white or brown, smooth. The texture of the herb is hard and brittle, the fracture surface is fibrous, yellow and white. The herb is odorless, it tastes bitter. The dried bark is a long strip piece block with a thickness of 3~6 mm, the outer surface is gray-brown, with reddish-brown round or transverse lenticels and cracked furrows. The texture of the herb is hard, the fracture surface is strong fibrous.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.Anti-inflammatory and analgesic effect; ②.Effect on urine volume and urate excretion.

 Medicinal efficacy: Clear heat and drying dampness, clear the liver and improve the eyesight, relieve cough and asthma. It is indicated for dampness heat and diarrhea dysentery, morbid leukorrhea, red eyes and swelling pain; eyesores and nebula, lung heat and asthma cough.

 Administration of Cortex Fraxini(Qín Pí): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Cortex Fraxini(Qín Pí)
TCM Books: ①.Internally:6~12 grams,Externally:proper amount,wash affected area with water decoction;②.Internally:water decoction, 1.5~3 qian(about 4.5~9 grams), or prepare to pill,powder.Externally:wash with water decoction;③.Internally:water decoction, 6~12 grams,Externally:proper amount,wash eyes with water decoction or drip eyes with liquid.

(2).Fraxinus szaboana Lingelsh.

 Fraxinus szaboana Lingelsh.:growing tree Botanical description: It is commonly known as F. ChinensisRoxb.var.acuminata Lingelsh.; F.caudata J.L.Wu; F.Rhynchophylla Hance var.huashanensis J.L.Wuet Z.W.Xie., or Jiān Yè Chén, or Sharp Leaf Ash. Small deciduous trees, 3~8 meters high; Bark gray. Winter bud is big, aciculate conical, the outer side is close with yellow-brown fuzz and white glandular hair, inside is close with brown fleecy pilose. Branchlets yellow, glabrous or finely pilose, spinescent, lenticels small and prominent, brown, elliptic, scattered. Pinnately compound leaves 12~20 cm long; Petiole 3~5 cm long, base slightly enlarged, tufts of brown fleecy pilose when tender, soon shed; Leaf axis relatively thin, slightly curved, upper mask narrow groove, groove edge is deep, lobular apex is articular, by fine pilose; 3~7 lobulars, hard paper, lanceolate, oval thin egg shape lanceolate, 4.5~9 cm long and 2~4 cm wide, apical lobule is usually larger, apex long acuminate to acute, base cuneate to obtuse, margin with sharp blade, glabrous above, below and on each side of midrib base is sometimes pale yellow or white pilose, midrib above recess, lateral veins 6~8 pairs, flat above, the following bump, fine veins bulge grid junction; Petiole 2~3 mm long or subsessile. Panicle terminal or axillary shoot, 5~8 cm long; Peduncle 1.5~2 cm long, sometimes branched base with leaflike bracts, pilose or chrose-hairy, lenticels scattered, inconspicuous; Male flower and bisexual flower different plant; Calyx cup-shaped, ca. 1.5 mm long, calyx teeth triangular apex; No crown; Style shorter, stigma 2-branched. Samara spatulate, 3~3.5 cm long, ca.5 mm wide, middle-upper widest, apex obtuse, base tapering, lower wing reaching the middle of nut, nut ca. 1.2 cm long, raised, veins slender straight; Calyx teeth of persistent calyx orderly, distanced from the base of the nut. Its flowering period is from April to May, fruiting from July to September.

 Fraxinus szaboana Lingelsh.:leaves and seeds This species is distinct from Fraxinus rhynchophylla Hance.: branchlets, axles, and leaflets covered with hairs. 3~7 leaflets, leaflet apex long acuminate to caudate apex, often white pilose below midvein base. Flowers without corolla, open at the same time as leaves; Calyx cup-shaped, distanced from the base of the nut.

 Ecological environment: The tree grows in mountain areas with an altitude over 1,000 meters above sea level. It distributes in the Yellow River area, areas of the Yangtze River valley.

(3).Fraxinus chinensis Roxb.

 Fraxinus chinensis Roxb.:growing trees Botanical description: It is commonly known as F.Chinensis Roxb.Var.rotundata Lingelsh., or Bái Là Shù, or White-Wax Ash. Small deciduous trees, about 15 meters tall. The bark is smooth gray and lobed with age. Leaves opposite. Leaves odd-feathered, 3~7 leaflets, broadly ovate, long ovate or obovate, 4~12 cm long, 3.5~7 cm wide; Apical central lobules especially broad, base cuneate, trailing winglike or united with petiole, apex acute, margin shallowly coarsely obtusely serrate, abaxially veins brownish pilose, petiole opposite swollen, yellowish-brown pilose. Flowers white, terminal panicle, 4 calyxes, corolla not present, 2 stamens, ovary superior, 2 locules. Samara oblanceolate, containing 1 seed.

 Different from the former two species: lobules are ovate, obovate-oblong to lanceolate, apex acute to acuminate; Calyx tubular, appressed to nut base.

 Fraxinus chinensis Roxb.:leaves and seeds Ecological environment: The tree grows in the slope of the sun, broadleaf forest, river wetland. The tree mainly distributes in the north, the area of the Yangtze river basin, southwest area of China.

(4).Fraxinus stuylosa Lingelsh.

 Fraxinus stuylosa Lingelsh.:leaves and seeds Botanical description: It is commonly known as F.Jallax Lingelsh., or Sù Zhù Chén. Small deciduous trees, about 8 meters high, branches sparse; Bark grayish brown, longitudinally lobed. Buds ovate, dark brown, shiny when dry, sometimes varnished.

 Branchlets pale yellow, straight and smooth, nodes enlarged, glabrous, lenticels sparsely convex. Pinnately compound leaves 6~15 cm long; Petiole slender, 2~5 cm long; Leaf axis thin and straight, upper mask narrow groove, leaflets inserted with joints, base thickened, glabrous; Lobular 3~5 pieces, hard paper, ovoid lanceolate to broadly lanceolate, 3.5~8 cm long, 0.8~2 cm wide, apex long acuminate, base broadly cuneate, next to short shank, sometimes obtuse, margin finely toothed, glabrous or sometimes white pilose on veins on the below, midrib above recess, raised below, lateral veins 8~10 on, fine veins effect is not obvious; Petiole 2~3 mm long, glabrous.

 Fraxinus stuylosa Lingelsh.:drawing of leaves flower and seed Panicles terminal or axillary annual branch tips, 8~10 (~14) cm long, branches slender, loose; Peduncle flat, glabrous, more lenticels, especially evident fruit; Pedicels slender, ca. 3 mm long; Calyx cup-shaped, ca. 1 mm long, 4 calyx teeth, narrowly triangular, acute, equal to calyx tube; Corolla yellowish, lobes linear-lanceolate, ca. 2 mm long, ca. 1 mm wide, apex obtuse; Male flowers with 2 stamens, slightly longer than corolla lobes, anthers oblong, filaments slender; Female flower not seen. Samara oblong-lanceolate, 1.5~3.5 cm long, 2.5~5 mm wide, widest in upper-middle, apex acute, obtuse or concave, with a small apex (persistent style), lower wing reaching above the middle nut, nut protuberant. It is flowering in May, fruiting in September.

 The difference between this species and other three species is that the leaflets are sessile or nearly sessile, the leaves are ovate-lanceolate to lanceolate, and the leaf axis is thin and straight. Flowers corolla, first leaf, then flower; Calyx teeth prominent.

 Ecological environment: The tree grows in mountainside mixed wood forest, at an elevation of 1,300-3,200 meters above sea level. The tree mainly distributes in the northwest and southwest, and the middle area of the Yellow River.
Herbs Clearing Heat and Drying Dampness.

 Introduction: Herbs Clearing Heat and Drying Dampness: an agent or substance bitter in taste and cold in property that is effective for eliminating heat and dampness, usually used in the treatment of diseases caused by damp-heat, such as acute jaundice, acute dysentery, urinary infection, eczema, boils and abscesses.
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