Introduction of Nv Zhen Zi:Glossy Privet Fruit or Fructus Ligustri Lucidi.

TCM Herbalism:Medicinals and Classifications. ✵The article gives records of the herb Glossy Privet Fruit, its English name, Latin name, property and flavor, its botanical source one plant species, ①.Ligustrum lucidum Ait., 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 Glossy Privet Fruit, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Fructus Ligustri Lucidi(Glossy Privet Fruit).

dried dark purple berries of Fructus Ligustri Lucidi Pin Yin Name: Nǚ Zhēn Zǐ.
 English Name: Glossy Privet Fruit.
 Latin Name: Fructus Ligustri Lucidi.
 Property and flavor: cool in nature, tastes bitter, sweet.

 Brief introduction: The herb Fructus Ligustri Lucidi is the dried ripe fruit of Ligustrum lucidum Ait., used to replenish liver and kidney Yin, darken the hair and improve the eyesight for the treatment of early graying of the hair, dim eyesight, lumbago, and low fever in cases of Yin deficiency. The herb is commonly known as Fructus Ligustri Lucidi, Glossy Privet Fruit, Nǚ Zhēn Zǐ.

 Botanical source: Herbal classic book defined the herb Fructus Ligustri Lucidi (Nu Zhen Zi) as the fruit of the plant species (1). Ligustrum lucidum Ait. It is a plant of the Ligustrum Linn. Genus, the Oleaceae family (olive family) of the Scrophulariales order. This commonly used species is introduced:

(1).Ligustrum lucidum Ait.


 flowering branches of Ligustrum lucidum Ait. with flower spikes Botanical description: The plant, Ligustrum lucidum Ait is a plant of the Oleaceae family (olive family) and Ligustrum genus, it is commonly known as Nǚ Zhēn, broad-leaf privet, Chinese privet, glossy privet, tree privet, or wax-leaf privet. It is an evergreen shrub or small tree, it grows up to more than 10 meters or even up to 25 meters. The bark is gray to taupe (grayish brown or dust color), branches are smooth, tawny (yellow-brown), gray or prunus (violet-red), cylindrical, and has sparse circular or oblong lenticels. Simple leaves are opposite, the petioles are 1~3 cm long, and the upper surface has grooves; leaf blade is coriaceous, oval (egg-shaped), ovate-oblong, or elliptic to broadly elliptical, 6~17 cm long, 3.5~6 cm wide, or 3-8 cm wide, apex is sharp-pointed, acuminate or blunt, base is rounded, sometimes is broadly cuneate or attenuated. The upper surface is dark green and shiny, the under surface is pale green, densely covered with small transparent glands, and the main vein is conspicuous.

 fruiting tree of Ligustrum lucidum Ait. with many small purple berries on branches Panicles are apical, 10~15 cm long, or 8-20 cm long, 8-25 cm wide, or 8~17 cm in diameter; peduncle is about 3 cm long, or absent; bracts at the base of the inflorescence are often the same shape as a leaf, bracteoles (bractlets) are lanceolate or filate (linear) to linear-lanceolate, sessile, caducous; Flowers are sessile or subsessile; the calyx is glabrous, 1.5-2 cm long, calyx teeth is inconspicuous or subtruncate; corolla is 4-5 mm long, corolla lobes are 2-2.5 mm long, reflexed; filaments are 1.5-3 mm long, thin, extending beyond corolla; 1 pistil, ovary is superior, spherical, 2-loculed, anthers are oblong, 1-1.5 mm long; style is 1.5-2 mm long, terete, stigma is clavate, shallowly 2-lobed.

 green fruit spikes of Ligustrum lucidum Ait. is hanging on branch Berries are stone fruit, oblong, reniform or subreniform, 7-10 mm long or 6~12 mm long, 4-6 mm in diameter, green when young, blue-black, turns reddish black at maturity, covered with white powder. 1~2 seeds, long oval. It is flowering period is from May to July, and the fruiting period is from July to May of the next year.

 mature fruit berries of Ligustrum lucidum Ait. grow on branch top Ecological Environment: The plant grows in the mountains and is often planted in gardens, it also grows in open forests, or dense forests, in areas at altitudes below 2,900 meters above sea level, it is also planted in courtyards or roadsides. Geographical distribution: This species is mainly distributed in the East, South, Southwest, and Central areas of China. It is mainly produced in the lower reaches of the Yangtze River, southwest, and other areas in the south of the Yangtze River. This species was native to the southern area of China and naturalized in many places: Argentina, Australia, Canary Islands, Chiapas, Italy, Lesotho, New Zealand, Norfolk Island, the southern USA (the United States of America: California, Arizona, Maryland, and the southeast from Texas to North Carolina), etc.

 Growth characteristics: The plant, Ligustrum lucidum Ait. prefers a warm and moist climate, likes light and is tolerant to shade, not resistant to coldness, has a strong resistance to air pollution, sulfur dioxide, chlorine, hydrogen fluoride, and lead vapor, and also can endure high dust, and smoke pollution. Its requirements in soil are not strict, it is appropriate to choose sandy loam or clay loam for cultivation, but it can also grow on red and yellow loam.

 purple mature fruit berries and dried berries of Glossy Privet Fruitbrownish dried unmature fruit berries and green unmature berries Characters of herbs: The fruit is oval (egg-shaped), elliptical shape, or reniform, 6~8.5 mm long, and 3.5~5.5 mm in diameter. The surface is murrey (black purple) or brownish-black, with uneven shrinkage, the base has carpopodium marks (fruit stalk marks) or persistent calyx and short carpopodium (fruit stalk). The herb is light, the exocarp is thin, the mesocarp is slightly thick and floppy (loose and soft), it is easy to peel off, the endocarp is ligneous (woody), yellowish-brown, there are several vertical ridges, one seed, the seed is elliptic, one end is flat or slightly curved, atropurpureus (purple black), oily (oiliness). The herb has a slight odor, it tastes sweet and slight sour puckery. The herb of a better grade has big full grains, murrey (black purple).

 Pharmacological actions: ①.anti-inflammatory effects; ②.promote the immune function; ③.lowering blood lipid and anti-arteriosclerosis, reduce the incidence of atherosclerosis, lower blood sugar, stimulates hematopoietic function; ④.protect liver damage; ⑤.anti-cancer; ⑥.anti-mutation; ⑦.protective effect to the chromosome damage; ⑧.estrogen like and androgen like action on the endocrine system; ⑨.Anti HpD photochlorination; ⑩.cardiotonic effect.

 Medicinal efficacy: Nourishing liver and kidney, clear deficient heat, improve eyesight and black hair, strengthen waist and knees. It is indicated for Yin deficiency of liver and kidney, Yin deficiency and endogenous heat (Yin deficiency, internal heat), aching softness of waist and knees, premature greying beard and hair, dizziness (vertigo), dim eyesight, tinnitus (ringing in ears), blurred vision (cloudy vision), spermatorrhea (nocturnal emission), endogenous heat and wasting thirst (internal heat, consumptive thirst), osteopyrexia and hectic fever (bone steaming and hot flash), etc.

 Administration of Fructus Ligustri Lucidi (Nǚ Zhēn Zǐ): 
 
Reference: Administration Guide of Fructus Ligustri Lucidi (Nǚ Zhēn Zǐ)
TCM Books: ①.Internally: 6~12 grams; ②.Internally:water decoction, 1.5~3 qian (about 4.5~9 grams);prepare to an ointment, or prepare to pill. Externally:prepare to an ointment and dropping eyes; ③.Internally:water decoction, 6~15 grams, or prepared to pill. Externally:proper amount, prepare to an ointment and dropping eyes.

 

 
  

 

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References:
  • 1.Introduction of Nv Zhen Zi:Glossy Privet Fruit or Fructus Ligustri Lucidi.

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