Introduction of Zhu Ling:Chuling, Umbellate Polypore, or Polyporus.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Chuling, Umbellate Polypore., its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source one fungus species, ①.Polyporus umbellatus (Pers) Fr., with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of this fungus species, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of this fungus species, the features of the herb Chuling,Umbellate Polypore., its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Polyporus(Chuling, Umbellate Polypore).

dried herb slices of Polyporus Pin Yin Name: Zhū Línɡ.
 English Name: Chuling, Umbellate Polypore.
 Latin Name: Polyporus.
 Property and flavor: neutral in nature, tasteless, sweet.

 Brief introduction: The herb Polyporus is the dried sclerotium of the fungus Polyporus umbellatus (Pers) Fr.(family Polyporaceae), used as a diuretic for edema and oliguria, and also to filter out damp for treating leukorrhagia. This herb is commonly known as Polyporus, Chuling, Umbellate Polypore, Agaric, Zhū Línɡ.

 Botanical source: Herbal classic book defined the herb Polyporus (Chuling, Umbellate Polypore) as the sclerotium of the species (1).Polyporus umbellatus (Pers) Fr., it is a fungus of the Polyporus genus, the Polyporaceae family (Polyporaceae, bracket fungus family), the Polyporales order. This commonly used species is introduced:

(1).Polyporus umbellatus (Pers) Fr.

 mushrooms of Polyporus umbellatus Pers Fr. grow in field Botanical description: Polyporus umbellatus (Pers) Fr is commonly known as Grifola umbellatus (Pers.) Pilat, or Zhū Líng. The sclerotium is an irregular shape, block mass of different sizes, solid and firm, the surface is atropurpureus (purple black), has many uneven wrinkles, the inside is white, the size is generally 3~5 cm × 3~20 cm. The fruiting body grows from the buried sclerotium, has a stalk, and ramifies repeatedly, forming a tuft of pileus, overall diameter (total diameter) is up to 20 cm. Pileus is round, 1~4 cm in diameter, the middle part is umbiliform (umbilicate), has pale yellow fibrous scales, nearly white to sandy beige (light brown), azonate, margin is thin and sharp, often involute (rolled inward), succulent, turns hard and crisp when it is dried. The mushroom context is thin and white. The fungus tube is about 2 mm long, the same color as the context (fungus flesh), and decurrent. Tube orifice is round to polygon, 3~4 in each 1 mm. Spores are colorless, smooth, terete (cylindraceous), round at one end, crooked tip at the other end, (7~10) muon × (3~4.2) muon.

 The life cycle of Polyporus is divided into four stages: spore, mycelium, sclerotium, and fruiting body. Basidiospore is a sexual spore produced by the fruiting body (long ovoid oval, pointed at one end, colorless, smooth, 7~10 × 3~4 mm), forming primary mycelium after germination, primary mycelium body with secondary mycelium produced binucleate mycelium, many secondary mycelia closely entangle into the mycelium. Sclerotium mainly stores nutrients and is resistant to high, low temperatures and drought. In inappropriate conditions, it can remain dormant for a long time and can germinate and produce new mycelia in any part of mycelium at appropriate temperature, humidity, and nutrient conditions. Generally, in late March, 5 cm of the surface layer temperature reaches 8~9 °C (Celsius, or 46.4~48.2 degrees Fahrenheit), the sclerotium began to grow, the germination of many white spots on the sclerotium body, with the rise of temperature, the wool spots grow and thickening, forming a plump shiny white sclerotium, gradually grow to the surface. In August and September, when the ground temperature reaches 12~20 °C (Celsius, or 53.6~68 degrees Fahrenheit), the growth of the sclerotium enters the flourishing period, and the volume and weight increase rapidly. The color of sclerotium changes from white to yellow from the base to the middle. At this time, such as continuous rainy days, air humidity increases, and part of the growth of the fruiting body, opens spores. As the ground temperature drops, the fruiting bodies quickly wither and rot. After October, when the temperature drops to 8~9 °C (Celsius, or 46.4~48.2 degrees Fahrenheit), the fungus stops growing and goes into hibernation. The next spring, new sclerotium germinates. In this way, the group gathers and forms a nest. The soil is fertile, the nutrition is rich, the sclerotium is big and many, the bifurcation is little, the common name "the porcine excrement ling"; Soil is barren, insufficient nutrition, knot part is small, bifurcation, commonly known as "chicken excrement ling." When the external environmental conditions are extremely adverse, the callus will stop growing, the sclerotium will age, the color will become dark, and the sclerotium will have sized holes, until decaying. The relationship between Polyporus and armillaria mellea is a nutritional relationship between parasitism and anti-parasitism, which can also be regarded as a symbiotic relationship.

 fresh sclerotium of Polyporus umbellatus Pers Fr. Ecological environment: The fungus grows on the ground near the roots of the forest or near saprophytes and rotten wooden pegs. The plant is distributed in the northwest, and southwest areas, the middle reaches of the Yellow River, and the middle reaches of the Yangtze River, China.

 dried sclerotium of Polyporus umbellatus Pers Fr. Growth characteristics: The fungus is wild in secondary forests of mountain areas at altitudes of 1,000~2,000 meters above sea level. In the rainy south area, it mostly grows on the sunny slope, in the northern area it mostly grows on the shady slope or half-sunny slope. The sclerotium began to germinate at a ground temperature of 8~9 °C (Celsius, or 46.4~48.2 degrees Fahrenheit), at the average monthly ground temperature of 14~20 °C (Celsius, or 57.2~68 degrees Fahrenheit), the new fungus grows faster and germinates more, fruiting bodies are formed at 22~25 °C (Celsius, or 71.6~77 degrees Fahrenheit). It is suitable to grow in loose and ventilate sandy loam with high humus content and rich acid content, soil moisture content is 30%~50%. It grows in symbiosis with Armillaria mellea, so its associated plants are related to Armillaria mellea saprophyte and parasitic tree species, often live together with other tree species, including oak tree, birch, maple, oak, elm, willow, and privet.

 dried herb slices of Polyporus Characters of herbs: The sclerotium is irregular in shape, block mass, strip-shaped, quasi-circular (similar round), or flat block, and some are branched, 5~25 cm long, and 2~6 cm in diameter. The surface is black, grayish-black, or brownish-black, and has shrinkage or nodular protrusions. The herb is light, the texture of the herb is hard, and the fracture surface is off-white or yellowish-white, slightly granular. The herb has a slight odor and a mild taste. The herb of a better grade is big and heavy, with black tegmen (scarfskin), and the fracture surface is white.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.diuretic effect; ②.antibacterial effect: the alcohol extract of Umbellate Polypore has an inhibitory effect on Staphylococcus aureus and Escherichia coli; ③.immune enhancement, antitumor effect; ④.protective effect on the liver of mice with toxic hepatitis; ⑤.antiradiation effect.

 Medicinal efficacy: Clearing damp and promoting diuresis. It is indicated for dysuria (difficulty in micturition), edema, edema and distension swelling fullness, diarrhea, stranguria with turbid discharge, morbid leukorrhea, beriberi.

 Administration of Polyporus (Zhū Línɡ): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Polyporus (Zhū Línɡ)
TCM Books: ①.Internally:6~12 grams; ②.Internally:water decoction, 2~4 qian (about 6~12 grams), or prepare to pill,powder; ③.Internally:water decoction, 10~15 grams,prepared to pill,powder.




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