Introduction of Dou Kou:Round Cardamom Fruit or Fructus Amomi Rotundus.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Round Cardamom Fruit, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source two plant species, ①.Amomum kravanh Pirre ex Gagnep., ②.Amomum compactum Soland ex Maton., 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 Round Cardamom Fruit, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Fructus Amomi Rotundus(Round Cardamom Fruit).

Fructus Amomi Rotundus:herb photo Pin Yin Name: Dòu Kòu.
 English Name: Round Cardamom Fruit.
 Latin Name: Fructus Amomi Rotundus.
 Property and flavor: warm, pungent.

 Brief introduction: The herb Fructus Amomi Rotundus is the dried ripe fruit of Amomum kravanh Pirre ex Gagnep., or Amomum compactum Soland ex Maton, used to resolve damp, move Qi, and warm the middle for relieving epigastric and abdominal distension, nausea, and vomiting due to accumulation of cold-dampness of stagnation of Qi in the spleen and stomach. The herb is commonly known as Fructus Amomi Rotundus, Round Cardamom Fruit, Dòu Kòu.

 Botanical source: Herbal classic book defined the herb Fructus Amomi Rotundus (Round Cardamom Fruit) as the dried ripe fruit of (1). Amomum kravanh Pirre ex Gagnep., or (2). Amomum compactum Soland ex Maton. They are plants of the Amomum Genus, the Zingiberaceae family (ginger family), Scitamineae order. These 2 commonly used species are introduced:

(1).Amomum kravanh Pirre ex Gagnep.

 Amomum kravanh Pirre ex Gagnep.:flowering plant Botanical description: It is commonly known as Amomum kravanh, or Bái Dòu Kòu. Stem is tufted, plant height is 3 meters, stem base leaf sheath green. Leaf-blade is ovate-lanceolate, ca. 60 cm long, 12 cm wide, apex tail, both surfaces are smooth glabrous, subsessile; Leaf tongue is round, 7~10 mm long; The mouth of leaf sheath and leaf tongue are densely covered with long coarse hair.

 Inflorescences from rhizome near stem base, cylindrical, sparsely conical, 8~11 cm long, 4~5 cm wide, bracts are densely imbricate; Bracts are triangular, 3.5~4 cm long, straw yellow, with distinct grid pattern; Bracteoles are tubular, dehiscent laterally; Calyx is tubular, white reddish, outside is villous, apex is tridentate, corolla tube is subequal with calyx tube, lobes are white, oblong, ca. 1 cm long, ca. 5 mm wide; Lower sepal is elliptic, ca. 1.5 cm long, ca. 1.2 cm wide, central yellow, concave, margin is yellowish-brown, base with flap stalk; Stamens descending, septum appendage trifid, ca. 3 mm; Ovary is villous.

 Amomum kravanh Pirre ex Gagnep.:fruiting plant Capsularfruit is subglobose, ca. 16 mm in diameter, white or yellowish, slightly obtuse, 3-ribbed, with 7~9 shallow grooves and several slightly elevated longitudinal lines, yellow coarse hairs at the top and base, pericarp is woody, easily dehiscent into three valves; The seeds are irregular polyhedra, 3~4 mm in diameter, dark brown, shallow, aromatic. Its flowering period is May, fruiting period is from June to August.

 Ecological environment: The plant grows in warm, moist forests rich in humus, in tropical forests with good drainage and fertility. It was native to Cambodia, Thailand. It was introduced and planted in Yunnan and Guangdong of China.

 Amomum kravanh Pirre ex Gagnep.:drawing of plant fruit and rhizome Growth characteristics: The plant Amomum kravanh prefers a warm, cool, humid climate, seedlings stop growing when meet a short time 9.5 °C (Celsius, or 49.1 degrees Fahrenheit) low temperature, leaf shrinkage, leaf tip scorched dry. The above ground part of the adult plants died at 0 °C (Celsius, or 32 degrees Fahrenheit). Extreme temperature is up to 41°C (Celsius, or 105.8 degrees Fahrenheit), under shaded conditions, it can grow normally. It should be cultivated in sunny, organically rich loam or sandy loam rather than clay or gravel soil.

 Round Cardamom Fruit:herb photo Characters of herbs: The herb is spherical with a diameter of 1.2~1.8 cm. The surface is yellowish-white to light yellowish-brown, with three deep longitudinal grooves, a protruding pilaster at the top, a concave fruit stalk mark at the base, and light brown fluff at both ends. The pericarp is light, crisp, and easy to split longitudinally. It is divided into 3 chambers, each chamber contains about 10 seeds. The seeds are irregular polyhedrons, slightly raised on the back, 3~4 mm in diameter, the surface is dark brown, wrinkled, and covered with residual aril. The herb has an aromatic odor, it tastes pungent and cool, slightly like camphor.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.promote gastric juice secretion; ②.promote gastrointestinal peristalsis; ③.stop abnormal fermentation in the intestine; ④.eliminate gastrointestinal Qi; ⑤.aromatic stomach-strengthening effect; ⑥.enhance the effect of low dose streptomycin on experimental tuberculosis in guinea pigs; ⑦.significant antiasthmatic effects; ⑧.inhibitory effect on Shigella dysenteriae.

 Medicinal efficacy: Reduce dampness and relieving distension, promoting the circulation of Qi and warm the middle, warm the middle and stop vomiting, warm the stomach, appetizing and aid digestion. It is indicated for turbid damp obstructing in middle-energizer, Qi stagnation, dampness and Qi stagnation, food stagnation, lack of appetite, incoordination between the spleen and the stomach, the onset of dampness warm syndrome, chest tightness and no hunger, cold and dampness nausea, abdominal distention, chest and abdominal distention, food retention, choking diaphragm, cardiac spasm, stomach cold and vomiting, vomiting, nausea, malaria, etc.

 Administration of Fructus Amomi Rotundus (Dòu Kòu): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Fructus Amomi Rotundus (Dòu Kòu)
TCM Books: ①.Internally:3~6 grams, better decoct later; ②.Internally:water decoction, should not decoct for long time, 0.5~2 qian(about 1.5~6 grams), or prepare to pill, powder; ③.Internally:water decoction,3~6 grams, add later to decoct, or prepared to pill, powder.

(2).Amomum compactum Soland ex Maton.

 Amomum compactum Soland ex Maton.:growing plants Botanical description: It is commonly known as Java Amomum, or Zhǎo Wā Bái Dòu Kòu. Perennial herbs, 1~1.5 meters tall, rhizome is elongated, stem base leaf sheath is red. Leaf-blade is lanceolate, 25~50 cm long, 4~9 cm wide, the tip of tail is 2.5~3 cm long, except ciliate, both sides are glabrous, turpentine, sessile; Lobelia is difid, rounded, 5~7 mm long, initially sparsely hairy, glabrescent and only sparsely ciliate. Leaf-sheath mouth is glabrous.

 Inflorescence is cylindric, ca.5 cm long, ca. 2.5 cm wide, gradually elongated after flowering; Pedicels are 8 cm long; Bracts are ovate-oblong, 2~2.5 cm long, 7~10 mm wide, straw-colored, with longitudinal streaks and margin hairs, persistent; Bracteoles are tubular, apex is trifid, hairy; Calyx tube is as long as corolla tube, 1~1.2 cm long, hairy; Corolla is white or slightly yellowish, lobes are oblong, 8 mm long; Lower sepal is elliptic, 15~18 mm long, 1~1.5 mm wide, slightly concave, pale yellow, midrib with purplish orange band, hairy, lateral staminodes are absent; Filaments base is hairy; Anthers are elliptic, ca. 2 mm long; Septum appendage trifid, ca. 4 mm; Nectary yellow-brown, 2, subcylindrical, 2 mm long; Ovary is villous. Fruit is oblate, 1~1.5 cm in diameter, with 9 grooves when dry, by thin long hair, when fresh it is light yellow; Seeds are irregular polyhedra, ca. 4 mm wide; Planting ditch. Its flowering period is from February to May, fruiting period is from June to August.

 Amomum compactum Soland ex Maton.:stems Ecological environment: The plant grows in the forest environment with good drainage and fertilizer retention, in the dank valley. It was native to south China, was introduced and planted in south and southwest area of China.

 Characters of herbs: The herb is a little smaller. The surface is yellowish-white, and some are slightly purple-brown. The fruit peel is thin and the seeds are thin and shriveled. The odor is weak.
Semen Amomi Rotundus(Round Cardamom Seed).

 Semen Amomi Rotundus:herb photo ;Brief introduction: The herb Semen Amomi Rotundus is the seed of round cardamom freshly removed from the pericarp, which is stronger in activity than the fruit.

 Botanical source: The botanical origin of the Semen Amomi Rotundus (Round Cardamom Seed) is the same as Fructus Amomi Rotundus (Round Cardamom Fruit), was introduced in the entry titled "Fructus Amomi Rotundus(Round Cardamom Fruit)".
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