Introduction of Bitter Orange:seville orange or sour orange.

Popular Herbs. ✵The article gives records of the herb Bitter Orange, its English name, Latin name, common names, property and flavor, its botanical source one plant species, ①.Citrus aurantium L., 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 Bitter Orange, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Bitter Orange(Seville orange, sour orange).

Citrus aurantium:bitter orange English Name: Bitter Orange.
 Latin Name: Citrus aurantium L.
 Common Names Seville orange, sour orange, immature bitter orange
 Property and flavor: The herb is cold in nature, tastes bitter and pungent.

 Brief introduction: Citrus aurantium is an evergreen tree that bears scented flowers and very bitter, sour fruit. It is native to China, it is cultivated in many parts of the world, including North America. The part most commonly used medicinally is then carefully dried, spicy, bitter-tasting fruit peel with the spongy inner white part removed. An oil known as bitter orange oil is pressed from the fresh peel, the oil extracted from the blossoms is referred to as neroli oil or orange flower oil. The oil specially treated with distilled water is referred to as orange flower water. The plant's leaves have reportedly been used as well.

 Botanical source: Common herbal classics defined the herb Bitter Orange as the immature fruit of the species (1). Citrus aurantium L. and several other species. It is a plant species of the Citrus L. genus, the Rutaceae family (rue, spurge olive family). The immature fruit is used medicinally, and the flowers and oil are also used. This commonly used species is introduced:

(1).Citrus aurantium L.

 Citrus aurantium:bitter orange fruits on tree Botanical description: Citrus aurantium is a small evergreen tree with dense branches and leaves, the branch is triangular, many thorns, and the thorns of the overgrown branches are as long as 8 cm. The leaves are alternate, the color of the leaves is dark green, the texture is quite thick, and the petiole has narrow or narrow inverted heart-shape leaf wings, which are 8~15 mm long and 3~6 mm wide; The leaves are leathery, obovate, or oval, 3.5~10 cm long and 1.5~5 cm wide, the apex is short and blunt, tapered or slightly concave, the base is wedge-shaped or round, whole edge or microwave-shaped, with translucent oil spots.

 Flowers are solitary or clustered in leaf axils and at the top of branches of the current year, white and fragrant; Calyx is cup-shaped, 5-lobed; 5 petals, oblong; Stamen numbers are over 20; Ovary is at the upper part, the pistil is shorter than stamen, stigma is capitate.

 The fruit is round or oblate, the peel is slightly thick to very thick, difficult to peel off, orange-yellow when mature, oil cell size is uneven, fruit core is solid or semi-full, 10~13 scoops, pulp tastes sour, sometimes bitter or with special smell; The seeds are numerous and large, often ribbed, and the cotyledons are milky white with single or multiple embryos. The plant flowering from April to May and fruiting from June to November.

 Ecological environment: Citrus aurantium is mainly distributed in China's Yangtze River valley and southern provinces, Southeast Asia, South Asia, USA (the United States of America), and other countries. The annual average temperature should be above 15 °C (Celsius, or 59 degrees Fahrenheit), the effective germination temperature should be above 10 °C (Celsius, or 50 degrees Fahrenheit), the suitable growth temperature should be 20~25 °C (Celsius, or 68~77 degrees Fahrenheit), and it can grow safely above -5 °C (Celsius, or 23 degrees Fahrenheit), with the lowest temperature being -9 °C (Celsius, or 15.8 degrees Fahrenheit) and the highest temperature being 40 °C (Celsius, or 104 degrees Fahrenheit).

 Growth characteristics: Citrus aurantium prefers warm and humid climate conditions with abundant rainfall and sunshine, and generally grows well at an average annual temperature above 15 °C (Celsius, or 59 degrees Fahrenheit). Citrus aurantium has wide adaptability to the soil, and both red and yellow soils can be cultivated, with neutral sandy loam as the ideal soil, while too sticky soil is not suitable for cultivation.

 Characters of herbs: The immature fruit of citrus aurantium is hemispherical, spherical, or oval with a diameter of 0.5~2.5 cm. The outer surface is dark green or dark brown-green, with granular protrusions and wrinkles. At the top, there are obvious styloid base marks, and at the base, there are disk residues or fruit stalk shedding marks. The fracture surface is smooth and slightly raised, gray-white, 3~7 mm thick, scattered with 1~2 rows of sunken oil spots on the edge, 7~12 valves of flesh sac, and a brownish-brown sac in the center, showing a wheel pattern. The texture of the dried herb is hard. The herb has a fragrant aroma, it tastes bitter and slightly sour.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.stimulate gastric juices and appetite; ②. Lower cholesterol level; ③.Anti-fungal skin infections; ④.antibacterial; ⑤.anti-inflammatory; ⑥.choleretic, etc.

 According to related studies, the herb bitter orange is commonly used to stimulate gastric juice and appetite, for it contains bitter-tasting flavonoid glycosides, such as naringin and neohesperidin, so it is also advised for appetite loss and dyspeptic complaints. The pectin component in the essential oil of the peel is identified as responsible for its high cholesterol-lowering actions in experiments. The oil of bitter orange proved very effective in fighting skin infections in past trials, but mild skin irritation was observed with the use of pure oil. Other properties of the bitter orange have been identified including antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, choleretic or bile-increasing, antitumor, blood-pressure-lowering, and larvacidal. The bitter orange peel also has a mild spasmolytic effect on the gastrointestinal tract and increases gastric juice secretion.

 Medicinal efficacy: Bitter orange peel was used traditionally in China, USA (the United States of America), and Europe to stimulate gastric juice secretions and encourage an appetite, promote digestion, relieve indigestion and gas, clear cough-related phlegm and other congestion, even for cancer. In Europe, the herb bitter orange peel is traditionally used in folk medicine for loss of appetite and dyspeptic symptoms, it is approved for loss of appetite and dyspeptic complaints, and the bitter orange flower and flower oil are used in folk medicine for the prevention of gastric and nervous complaints, gout, sore throat, nervous tension and sleeplessness, chronic bronchitis.

 In TCM works, the herb bitter orange is recorded to relieve stagnant Qi and remove food retention (or removing Qi stagnation), it is indicated for indigestion or stagnation, distention and fullness, distension and pain, constipation, diarrhea dysentery and tenesmus, accumulation of pathogens in the chest, gastroptosis, uterine prolapse, archoptosis, etc.

 Administration of Bitter Orange (immature bitter orange): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Bitter Orange (immature bitter orange)
Herbal classic books and TCM Books: An infusion tea is made using 1 teaspoon peel per cup of water. The tincture is recommended 20 drops three times daily. Orange flower water is given in the tablespoon. Tea is advised to prepare with 1 teaspoon of herb to 150 ml of hot water, and let stand for 10 minutes before straining. In Europe, the herb bitter orange peel is recommended 4~6 grams daily, or 1 cup of tea half-hour before meals, or tincture 2~3 grams. In TCM works, the herb immature bitter orange is recommended internally as water decoction, 3~10 grams, or prepare to pill, powder; externally proper amount, prepare to finely ground powder and apply mixed, or fried hot and ironing.
 Contraindications, Precautions and Adverse Reactions: Bitter orange peel and its formulations are generally considered safe to use in recommended amounts, there is no serious adverse reactions appeared. Due to its component furocoumarins, a sun-sensitizing substance, the herb is warned that people with fair skin in particular may develop skin reactions to the sun or photosensitivity after taking bitter orange peel preparations. The herb is advised should be avoided if you have a stomach or intestinal ulcer. Severe adverse reactions are intestinal colic, convulsions, and fatalities have been reported in children who ate large amounts of the peel. The pure oil may mildly irritate your skin, and do not take the essential oil internally. Frequent contact with the herb or with the volatile oil can cause sensitization and results in erythema, swelling, blisters, pustules, and dermatoses leading to scab formation and pigment spots. In TCM works, the herb immature bitter orange is not recommended to pregnant woman or those with deficiency of spleen and stomach, or be cautious if it is necessary to use.

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