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 of the Asparagales order. This commonly used species is introduced as:

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


 Bletilla striata Thunb.Reichb.f.:flowering plant Botanical description: The plant is commonly known as Bái Jí. Perennial herb, it grows up to 15~70 cm tall. Rhizome (or pseudobulb) is triangular-oblate or irregularly lozenged, fleshy, hypertrophic, viscous, constant, joined. Stems are erect. 3~5 leaf-blades, lanceolate or broadly lanceolate, 8~30 cm long, 1.5~4 cm wide, apex acuminate, base descending long sheath, entire. Racemes are terminal, 3~8 flowers, raceme axis length 4~12 cm; Bracts lanceolate, 1.5~2.5 cm long, caducous; Flowers are purple or reddish, 3~4 cm in diameter; Sepals and petals are equal length, narrowly oblong, 2.8~3 cm long; Lower lobe obovate, 2.3~2.8 cm long, white or purplish, upper 3-lobed, middle lobe margin undulate, apex concave, center with 5 folds, lateral lobes are erect, clasped column, slightly reaching toward middle lobe, but less than half of middle lobe; Stamen and pistil join as stamen column, two sides have narrow wing, stigma tip bears 1 stamen, anther block 4 pairs, flat and long; Ovary inferior, terete, twisted. Capsule is cylindrical, 3.5 cm long, ca. 1 cm in diameter, slightly acute at both ends, with 6 longitudinal ribs. Its flowering period is from April to May, fruiting period is from July to September.

 Bletilla striata Thunb.Reichb.f.:flowering plant Ecological Environment: The plant grows on humid areas in mountains and valleys. It mainly distributes in the east, south, northwest, southwest area, Taiwan and other areas of China. Cultivation biological characteristics: The plant prefers a warm and humid climate, not cold. Loose, fertile and well-drained sandy loam, mixed with sandy soil and humus soil should be selected for cultivation.

 Growth characteristics: The plant Bletilla striata prefer a warm and humid climate, not resistant to cold. It is advisable to choose loose, fertile, well-drained and relatively damp sandy loam, sandy soil, and humus soil for cultivation, better not in poorly drained 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 branches like palms, a few with 4-5 claw branches, 1.5~6 cm long, and 0.5~3 cm thick. The surface is gray-white to gray-brown or yellow-white, with fine wrinkles and raised stem marks on it, there are traces on the bottom which are connecting another tuber; With the stem mark as the center, there are several brownish concentric rings, brown punctate fibrous root marks are remaining on the rings. The texture of the herb is hard and not easily broken. The fracture surface is white-like, translucent, and keratose, and scattered punctate vascular bundles can be seen. The coarse powder swells when it meets water, and has an obvious feeling of stick-slip, the water saps are gelatinous. The herb is odorless, it tastes bitter and sticky when chewed. The herb of better grade is big, full, white, translucent, 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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