Introduction of Bai Ji:Common Bletilla Tuber or Rhizoma Bletillae.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Common Bletilla Tuber, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source one plant species, ①.Bletilla striata (Thunb.) Reichb.f., 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 Common Bletilla Tuber, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Rhizoma Bletillae(Common Bletilla Tuber).

Rhizoma Bletillae:herb photo Pin Yin Name: Bái Jí.
 English Name: Common Bletilla Tuber.
 Latin Name: Rhizoma Bletillae.
 Property and flavor: slightly cold, bitter, sweet, puckery.

 Brief introduction: The herb Rhizoma Bletillae is the steamed and dried tuber of Bletilla striata (Thunb.) Reichb.f., used (1).as a hemostatic for treating hemoptysis, hematemesis and traumatic bleeding, and (2).to reduce swelling and promote regeneration for treating boils and burns. The herb is commonly known as Rhizoma Bletillae, Common Bletilla Tuber, Common Bletilla Pseudobulb, Tuber of Common Bletilla, Tuber of Hyacinth Bletilla, Bái Jí.

 Bletilla striata Thunb.Reichb.f.:drawing of whole plant Botanical source: Herbal classic book defined the herb Rhizoma Bletillae (Common Bletilla Tuber) as the steamed and dried tuber of the species (1).Bletilla striata (Thunb.) Reichb.f. It is a plant of the Bletilla Rchb. f. genus, the Orchidaceae family (orchid family) of the Asparagales order. This commonly used species is introduced:

(1).Bletilla striata (Thunb.) Reichb.f.


 Bletilla striata Thunb.Reichb.f.:flowering plant Botanical description: Bletilla striata (Thunb.) Reichb.f is also known as Limodorum striata Thunb., commonly known as Bái Jí. A perennial herb, it grows up to 15~70 cm tall. The rhizome (or pseudobulb) is triangular-oblate or irregularly rhombic, succulent, hypertrophic, or viscous, several rhizomes are connected. Stems are upright. 3~5 leaf-blades, lanceolate or broadly lanceolate, 8~30 cm long, 1.5~4 cm wide, the apex is acuminate, the base is decurrent and long sheathed (long sheath-shaped), entire.

 Racemes are apical, 3~8 flowers, rachides (inflorescence axis) are 4~12 cm long; Bracts are lanceolate, 1.5~2.5 cm long, caducous; Flowers are purple or faint red (rose color), 3~4 cm in diameter; sepal (calyx lobe) and petal are nearly equal length, narrowly oblong, 2.8~3 cm long; labellum (flabs) is obovate, 2.3~2.8 cm long, white or with purplish veins, the upper part is 3-lobed, the edge of the lobe is undulated serrate, the apex is concave, there are 5 pleats in the center, lateral lobes are upright, clasped the column, slightly reaching toward the middle lobe, but less than half of the middle lobe; Stamen and pistil connate as gynostemium, two sides have narrow wings, 1 stamen insert on the tip of stigma, anther blocks are in 4 pairs, flat and long; Ovary is inferior, terete (cylinderical), twisted.

 Capsularfruit is cylindrical, about 3.5 cm long, and about 1 cm in diameter, both ends are slightly pointed, with 6 longitudinal ridges. Its flowering period is from April to May, the fruiting period is from July to September.

 Bletilla striata Thunb.Reichb.f.:flowering plant Ecological Environment: The plant grows in moist places in mountains and valleys. It is mainly distributed in the eastern, southern, northwest, and southwest areas, Taiwan, and other areas of China.

 Growth characteristics: The plant Bletilla striata prefers a warm and moist climate, not resistant to cold. It is appropriate to choose loose, fertile, good drainage, relatively shady, damp sandy loam, sandy soil, and humus soil for cultivation, better not to choose poor drainage and heavy viscous soil.

 Bletilla striata Thunb.Reichb.f.:fresh herb Characters of herbs: The rhizome is slightly irregular oblate or rhombic, with 2~3 palmate divarications, a few with 4-5 claw branches, 1.5~5 cm long, and 0.5~1.5 cm thick. The surface is ash gray (grayish-white) or yellowish-white, with fine wrinkles and raised stem marks on the upper surface, there are traces on the under surface that are connecting another tuber; with the stem mark as the center, there are several tan (chocolate brown) concentric rings, brown punctate fibrous root marks are remaining on the rings. The texture of the herb is firm and hard, not easily broken. The fracture surface is off-white, translucent, and corneous, and scattered punctate vascular bundles can be seen. The coarse powder swells when it meets water, and has a conspicuous feeling of stick-slip, the water saps are gelatinous. The herb is odorless, it tastes bitter and sticky when chewed. The herb of a better grade is big, full, white, and translucent, and the texture of the herb is solid and firm.

 Common Bletilla Tuber:herb photo Pharmacological actions: ①.shorten the coagulation time and prothrombin time; ②.reduce the damage of acid to the gastric mucosa of rats; ③.anti-tumor; ④.antimicrobial effects.

 Medicinal efficacy: Convergence, hemostasis (stanch bleeding), tonifying lung, detumescence (reduce swelling), promoting granulation (promote tissue regeneration), healing sores. It is indicated for hemoptysis (cough up blood), hememesis (spitting blood), hemoptysis of lung injury, epistaxis (nose bleeding or bleeding from five aperture or subcutaneous tissue), hemafecia (pass blood in stool), traumatic bleeding, bleeding from incised (metal-inflicted) wound, swelling of ulcers, ulcer and pain, scorch of soup or fire burns, scalding burns, chapped skin, rhagadia manus et pedis (chapped hands and feet), anal fissure, etc.

 Administration of Rhizoma Bletillae (Bái Jí): 
 
Reference: Administration Guide of Rhizoma Bletillae (Bái Jí)
TCM Books: ①.Internally: 6~15 grams; or prepare to finely ground herb powder and swallow take, 3~6 grams.Externally:proper amount; ②.Internally:water decoction, 1~3 qian (about 3~9 grams), or prepare to pill,powder.Externally:grinded into fine powder,sprinkle apply or smear apply; ③.Internally:water decoction, 3~10 grams; prepare to finely ground herb powder, take 1.5~3 grams each time. Externally:proper amount,prepare to finely ground herb powder,sprinkle apply or smear apply.
 Contraindications, Precautions and Adverse Reactions: the herb Rhizoma Bletillae should not be combined with aconite family herbs, plum kernel, apricot kernel.

 

 
  

 

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References:
  • 1.Introduction of Bai Ji:Common Bletilla Tuber or Rhizoma Bletillae.

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