Introduction of Yu Li Ren:Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed or Semen Pruni Humilis.
✵The article gives records of the herb Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its herbal classic book defined botanical source three plant species, ①.Prunus humilis Bge., ②.Prunus japonica Thunb., ③.Prunus pedunculata Maxim., and one other usable plant species, ④.Prunus triloba Lindl. with a detailed introduction to the botanical features of these four plants, the growth characteristics, and ecological environment of these four plants, the features of the herb Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.
Semen Pruni(Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed).
Pin Yin Name: Yù Lǐ Rén.
English Name: Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed.
Latin Name: Semen Pruni, or Semen Pruni Humilis.
Property and flavor: neutral in nature, tastes pungent, bitter, sweet.
Brief introduction: The herb Semen Pruni is the dried ripe seed of Prunus humilis Bge., Prunus japonica Thunb., or Prunus pedunculata Maxim., used as an aperient for the treatment of constipation, and a diuretic for relieving edema. The herb is commonly known as Semen Pruni, Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed (and many other names, Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed, Longstalk Peach Seed, Seed of Bunge Cherry, Seed of Dwarf Flowering Cherry, Seed of Chinese Bushcherry, Seed of Down), Yù Lǐ Rén.
Botanical source: The herbal classic book defined the herb Semen Pruni (Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed) as the dried ripe seed of the species (1). Prunus humilis Bge., (2). Prunus japonica Thunb., or (3). Prunus pedunculata Maxim. Other famous herbal classics defined the herb Semen Pruni (Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed) as the dried ripe seed of the species (1). Prunus humilis Bge., (2). Prunus japonica Thunb., or (3). Prunus pedunculata Maxim., or (4). Prunus triloba Lindl. They are plant species of the Cerasus Mill genus, the Rosaceae family (rose family) of the Rosales order. These 4 commonly used species are introduced:
(1).Prunus humilis Bge.
Botanical description: It is commonly known as Cerasus humilis(Bge.) Sok., or ōu Lǐ. A species of the Cerasus Mill genus, the Rosaceae family (rose family) of the Rosales order. Deciduous shrub, the plant grows up to 1~1.5 meters tall. Bark is grayish brown, branchlets are pilose. Leaves are alternate, oblong or ellipsoid lanceolate, 2.5~5 cm long, 1~2 cm wide, apex is pointed, margin is thinly serrate, pubescent along main veins below; stipules are linear, caducous.
Flowers bloom with leaves, solitary or 2 connates, pedicels are sparsely pubescent; 5 sepals, reflexed posterior; 5 petals, white or pink; Stamens are numerous; 1 carpels. Drupes are subglobose, about 1.5 cm in diameter, bright red or orange when mature, its flowering period is from April to May, fruiting period is from May to June.
Seeds are ovate, 5~8 mm long, 3~5 mm in diameter. Surface is yellow-white or light brown, one end is pointed, the other is blunt round. One side of the tip has a linear species umbilicus, the center of the round end has a dark chalazal point, the autochalazal point upward with many longitudinal vascular veins. Seed coat is thin, cotyledons are milky white, oily. It tastes slightly bitter.
Ecological environment: the plant grows on a barren hillside or the edge of a sandy mound. It is mainly distributed in the north area and other regions of China.
Growth characteristics: The Prunus humilis Bge. prefers sunlight and does not require strict climatic conditions, and it can pass winter naturally at -15 °C (Celsius, or 5 degrees Fahrenheit) in winter. In summer at a temperature 40 °C (Celsius, or 104 degrees Fahrenheit), if the moisture is sufficient, also can pass through high temperature safely. Drought resistant, it prefers wet, avoid waterlogging. Strong adaptability to the soil, sandy loam, clay, loess are all suitable for cultivation because the distribution of the absorption root system is shallow, so the clay loam with strong water retention and fertility is better.
Characters of herbs: Seeds are oval to long oval, a few are spherical, 6~7 mm long and 3~4 mm in diameter. The seed coat is yellow-brown. The chalaza is dark brown and about 0.7 mm in diameter.
(2).Prunus japonica Thunb.
Botanical description: It is commonly known as Cerasus japonica (Thunb.) Lois, or Yù Lǐ. A species of the Cerasus Mill genus, the Rosaceae family (rose family) of the Rosales order. Shrubs, the plant grows up to 1~1.5 meters tall. Branchlets are grayish brown, branchlets are green or greenish-brown, glabrous. Winter buds are ovate, glabrous. Leaf-blade is ovate or ovate-lanceolate, 3~7 cm long, 1.5~2.5 cm wide, apex is acuminate, base is rounded, margin incise sharp double serrate, dark green at upper part, glabrous or sparsely pilose on veins, lateral veins are 5~8 pairs; Petiole is 2~3 mm long, glabrous or sparsely pilose; Stipules are linear, 4-6 mm long, margin is with glandular teeth. 1~3 flowers, clustered, flowers and leaves grow together or first; Pedicels are 5-10 mm long, glabrous or sparsely pilose; Calyx tube gyro, nearly equal in length and width, ca. 2.5~3 mm, glabrous, sepals are elliptic, slightly longer than calyx tube, apex is rounded and obtuse, margin is serrate; Petals are white or pink, obovate-elliptic; Stamens are ca. 32; Style is subequal with stamens, glabrous. Drupes are subglobose, crimson, ca. 1 cm in diameter; The kernel surface is smooth. Its flowering period is May, fruiting period is from July to August. 2n=16.
Ecological environment: the plant grows under the hillside forest, thicket or cultivation, growing in the sunny hillside, roadside or small bushes, 100~200 meters above sea level. It is distributed in the north area, the lower reaches area of the Yangtze River, and other areas of China. It is also distributed in northeast Asia.
Characters of herbs: Seeds are oval or spherical, about 7 mm long and about 5 mm in diameter. The seed coat is yellowish-white to light brown. The apex is pointed, and the base is blunt and round. There is a linear hilum at the tip of the apex, the chalaza is dark brown, about 1 mm in diameter, and many brown vascular bundles are scattered from the junction. The raphe is obvious. The seed coat is thin. After soaking in warm water, the seed coat falls off, and the inner surface is covered with white translucent residual endosperm. 2 cotyledons, milky white, rich in oil. The herb has a slight odor, it tastes slightly bitter.
(3).Prunus pedunculata Maxim.
Botanical description: It is commonly known as Amygdalus pedunculata Pall., or Cháng Gěng Biǎn Táo, or Cháng Bǐng Biǎn Táo. A species of the Amygdalus L. genus, the Rosaceae family (rose family) of the Rosales order. Shrubs, the plant grows up to 1~2 meters tall; Branches are spreading, with many short branches; Branchlets are pale brown to dark grey-brown, pubescent when young; Winter buds are short, often 3 on short branches, the middle for leaf buds, two sides for flower buds. Leaves on short branches are clustered densely, leaves on annual branches are alternate; Leaf blade is elliptic, suborbicular or obovate, 1~4 cm long, 0.7~2 cm wide, apex is pointed or obtuse, base is broadly cuneate, upper part is dark green, lower part is light green, both surfaces are sparsely pubescent, margin is unevenly coarsely serrate, lateral veins are 4~6 pairs; Petiole is 2~510 mm long, pubescent.
Flowers are solitary, slightly before leaf opening, 1~1.5 cm in diameter; Pedicels 4~8 mm long, pubescent; Calyx tube broadly bell-shaped, 4~6 mm long, glabrous or slightly pilose; Sepals are triangular-ovate, apex is slightly obtuse, margin is sometimes sparsely shallowly serrate; Petals are suborbicular, 7~10 mm in diameter, sometimes apex slightly concave, pink; Stamens are numerous; Ovary is densely pubescent, style is slightly longer or several as long as stamens. Fruit is subglobose or ovoid, 10~15 mm in diameter, apex is with small tips, dark purplish-red when ripe, densely pubescent; Pedicels are 4~8 mm long; The pulp is thin and dry, dehiscent when mature, away from the core; Kernel is broadly ovate, 8~12 mm in diameter, apical is with tubercle pointed, base is rounded, both sides are slightly flat, light brown, surface is smooth or slightly wrinkled; Seed kernel is wide oval, brown-yellow. It is flowering in May, fruiting from July to August.
Difference from Amygdalus triloba: The species is closely related to Amygdalus triloba (Lindl.) Ricker, but the shrub is relatively small and only grows up to 1~2 meters high. Leaf apex is often undivided, margin is with irregular coarse serrate; Kernel is broadly ovate, apex is with tubercle.
Ecological environment: the plant is fond of light, cold, and drought. It grows in the fixed sandy land, gravel sunny slope, and Piedmont of arid steppe and desert steppe. The plant is distributed in Ningxia of China; It's also found in Siberia.
Characters of herbs: Seeds are conical, 8~9 mm long, and about 6 mm in diameter. The seed coat is reddish-brown, wrinkled. The chalaza is dark brown with a diameter of about 2 mm.
Pharmacological actions: ①.shorten the defecation time and increase the frequency of defecation in mice with dryness constipation; ②.purgative effect; ③.anti-inflammatory; ④.analgesic effects.
Medicinal efficacy: Relaxing bowel, moistening dryness, laxation, descending Qi, alleviate water retention. It is indicated for intestine-dryness due to consumption of fluid, dyspepsia and Qi stagnation (indigestion, food retention and Qi stagnation), stagnation of energy of the large intestine, abdominal distension and constipation, dryness and obstruction, edema, enlarged abdomen and edema, limb edema, beriberi, dysuria (difficulty in micturition), etc.
Administration of Semen Pruni (Yù Lǐ Rén):
Administration Guide of Semen Pruni (Yù Lǐ Rén)
①.Internally:6~10 grams; ②.Internally:water decoction, 1~3 qian (about 3~9 grams), or prepare to pill, powder; ③.Internally:water decoction,3~10 grams;or prepared to pill, powder.
Contraindications,Precautions and Adverse Reactions:the herb Semen Pruni should be used cautiously during pregnancy. Should avoid being used with beef and horsemeat.
(4).Prunus triloba Lindl.
Botanical description: It is commonly known as Amygdalus triloba, Amygdalus triloba(Lindl.) Ricder, or Yú Yè Méi. A species of the Amygdalus L. genus, the Rosaceae family (rose family) of the Rosales order. Leaves on short branches are often clustered, leaves on annual branches are alternate; Leaf blade is broadly elliptic to obovate, 2~6 cm long, 1.5~4 cm wide, apex is shortly acuminate, often 3-lobed, base is broadly cuneate, upper mask is sparsely pilose or glabrous, lower pubescent, margin is coarsely serrate or doubly serrate; Petiole is 5~10 mm long, pubescent.
1~2 Flowers, blooming before leaves, 2~3 cm in diameter; Pedicels are 4~8 mm long; Calyx tube is broadly bell-shaped, 3~5 mm long, glabrous or slightly hairy when young; Sepals are ovate or ovate-lanceolate, glabrous, sparsely serrate near apex; Petals are suborbicular or broadly obovate, 6~10 mm long, apex is obtuse, sometimes concave, pink; Stamens are ca. 25~30, shorter than petals; Ovary is densely pubescent, style is slightly longer than stamens.
Fruit is subglobose, 1~1.8 cm in diameter, apex is with short tip, red, outer pubescent; Pedicels are 5~10 mm long; Pulp is thin, it is cracking when mature; Kernel is subglobose, with a thick hard shell, 1~1.6 cm in diameter, hardly flattened on both sides, tip is round blunt, surface is with irregular reticulations. Its flowering period is from April to May, fruiting from May to July.
Ecological environment: the plant prefers light, slightly resistant to shade, cold, can be overwintered at -35 °C (Celsius, or -31 degrees Fahrenheit). Its soil requirements are not strict, neutral to slightly alkaline, and fertile soil is better. The root system is developed, drought tolerance. It is not resistant to waterlogging. Strong disease resistance. The plant grows at low to medium altitudes on slopes or beside ditches, under bushes, or at the edge of forests. It is distributed in the north, northwest, the lower reaches area of the Yangtze River, and other areas of China. It is cultivated in most parks throughout China, it is also distributed in Central Asia.
Characters of herbs: Seeds are conical, 7~8 mm long and about 6 mm in diameter. The seed coat is reddish brown, wrinkled. The chalaza is dark brown with a diameter of about 2 mm.
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1.Introduction of Yu Li Ren:Chinese Dwarf Cherry Seed or Semen Pruni Humilis.