Introduction of Ding Xiang:Cloves or Flos Caryophylli.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Cloves, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source one plant species, ①.Eugenia caryophyllata Thunb., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of this plant species, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of this plant species, the features of the herb Cloves, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Flos Caryophylli(Cloves).

brownish dried herbs Flos Caryophylli in a pile Pin Yin Name: Dīnɡ Xiānɡ.
 English Name: Cloves.
 Latin Name: Flos Caryophylli.
 Property and flavor: warm, pungent.

 Brief introduction: The herb Flos Caryophylli is the dried flower-bud of Eugenia caryophyllata Thunb., used (1).to warm the stomach for the relief of vomiting and hiccups due to cold, and (2).to warm the kidney for treating impotence. The herb is commonly known as Flos Caryophylli, Cloves, Dīnɡ Xiānɡ.

 Botanical source: Herbal classic book defined the herb Flos Caryophylli (Cloves) as the dried flower-bud of (1). Eugenia caryophyllata Thunb. It is a plant of the Eugenia (Tetradium) Genus, the Myrtaceae family (myrtle family), Myrtaceae order. This commonly used species is introduced:

(1).Eugenia caryophyllata Thunb.

 flowering tree of Eugenia caryophyllata Thunb. with many pink flower spikes growing on branches Botanical description: Eugenia caryophyllata Thunb is also known as Syzygium aromaticum (L.) Merr. et Perry., or Eugenia aromaticea Kuntze., is commonly known as Dīnɡ Xiānɡ. Evergreen trees, the tree grows up to 10 meters high. Leaves are opposite; petioles are conspicuous; leaf blades are rectangular ovate or rectangular-obovate, 5~10 cm long, 2.5~5 cm wide, apex is acuminate or sharp-pointed; the base is narrow and often spread downward to the petiole, which is entire.

 several pink flower spikes of Eugenia caryophyllata Thunb. Flowers are fragrant, form apical racemose cyme (definite raceme), flowers are 6 mm in diameter; calyx is hypertrophic, greenish and later turns purplish, long tubular, apex is 4-lobed, lobes are triangular; corolla is white, slightly mauve (lilac), short tubular, 4-lobed; stamens are many, anthers are longitudinal dehiscent; the ovary is inferior, connate with calyx tube, and style is thick, stigma is inconspicuous.

 Fruit berries are reddish-brown, rectangular oval, 1~1.5 cm long, 5~8 mm in diameter, apex has persistent sepals (calyx lobes). Seeds are rectangular.

 flowering tree of Eugenia caryophyllata Thunb. with pink flower spikes Ecological environment: The tree is cultivated in the Zhujiang River area, and other areas of China, and it is also distributed in the Malay Archipelago, and Africa.

 Growth characteristics: The plant Eugenia caryophyllata prefers a tropical island climate. Young trees are sciophilous (like shade), are not tolerant of the scorching sun, and grow slowly. Adult trees prefer light, need sufficient sunshine to bloom early, have more flowers, are afraid of coldness and waterlogging and are not resistant to wind. It is appropriate to choose a field with deep soil layers, fertile, sandy loam with good drainage, and pH (pH scale:acidity-basicity) 5.0-6.0, for cultivation.

 several Cloves Characters of herbs: The flower bud of the herb is slightly rod-shaped (pestle-shaped), 1~2 cm long. The corolla is spheric shape (globular), 0.3~0.5 cm in diameter. 4 petals are imbricated and holding together, tan (chocolate brown) or yellow-brown, with stamens and styles in the petals, and many yellow granuliform (acinose) anthers are visible after being crushed. The calyx tube is terete, slightly oblate, some are slightly curved, 0.7~1.4 cm long, 0.3~0.6 cm in diameter, reddish brown or tan (chocolate brown), with 4 triangular sepals (perianth lobes) on the upper part, separated in a cross shape. The texture of the herb is firm and solid, and it is rich in oil. The herb has a strong fragrance, and it tastes spicy and pungent, benumbing the tongue. The herb of a better grade is big, thick, bright purple brown, has a strong fragrance, and is oily (oleosus).

 dried dark brown herbs of Flos Caryophylli are piled together Pharmacological actions: ①.promote gastric juice to secrete, improve digestion, relieve nausea and vomiting, alleviate abdominal flatulence; ②.eugenol has local anesthesia and analgesic effect; ③.anesthesia and killing effect on pig tapeworm; ④.inhibitory effect against bacteria and pathogenic fungus; ⑤.inhibitory effect on influenza virus PR8 strain.

 Medicinal efficacy: Warm the middle and calm the adverse-rising energy, warm the kidney, invigorate the kidney and supporting Yang. It is indicated for deficiency of spleen and stomach, hiccup and vomiting, poor appetite vomiting and diarrhea, regurgitation, diarrhea and dysentery, cold and pain in the heart and abdomen, epigastric cold and pain, kidney deficiency and impotence, cold in the waist and knees, dorsal furuncle, hypochondnrium or abdominal mass, hernia, tinea, etc.

 Administration of Flos Caryophylli (Dīnɡ Xiānɡ): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Flos Caryophylli (Dīnɡ Xiānɡ)
TCM Books: ①.Internally:1~3 grams; ②.Internally:water decoction, 0.3~1 qian (about 1~3 grams), or prepare to pill, powder. Externally:prepare to finely ground herb powder and apply stick; ③.Internally:water decoction, 2~5 grams, or prepared to pill, powder. Externally:proper amount, prepare to finely ground herb powder and apply stick.
 Precautions and Adverse Reactions: the herb Flos Caryophylli should not be combined with the herb Radix Curcumae.




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  • 1.Introduction of Ding Xiang:Cloves or Flos Caryophylli.

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