Introduction of Wild Oregon Grape:Rocky Mountain grape or California barberry.

Popular Herbs. ✵The article gives records of the herb Wild Oregon Grape, its English name, Latin name, common names, property and flavor, its botanical source one plant species, ①.Berberis aquifolium Pursh., 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 Wild Oregon Grape, its pharmacological actions, medicinal efficacy, and administration guide.

Wild Oregon Grape(Rocky Mountain grape).

Wild Oregon Grape:Rocky Mountain grape English Name: Wild Oregon Grape.
 Latin Name: Berberis aquifolium Pursh.,sometimes referred to as Mahonia aquifolium Nutt.
 Common Names: California barberry, holly-leaf barberry, Rocky Mountain grape, Oregon Holly Grape, trailing mahonia.
 Property and flavor: The cooked fruit tastes somewhat like blackcurrants.

 Brief introduction: Wild Oregon grape is native to the Rocky Mountain regions, its dried rhizome and roots are used medicinally. The herb was found with anti-oxidant and antifungal properties, its tannin content has astringent property.

 Botanical source: Common herbal classics defined the herb Wild oregon grape as the rhizome and roots of the species (1).Berberis aquifolium Pursh. It is a plant species of the Berberis genus, the Berberidaceae family(barberry family). The rhizome and roots are used medicinally. This commonly used species is introduced:

(1).Berberis aquifolium Pursh.

 Berberis aquifolium Pursh:flowering plants Botanical description: Berberis aquifolium Pursh is an evergreen shrub, fast-growing plant, it grows up to 30~50 cm, or up to 150 cm high, stout stems are usually monomorphic, sparingly branched, seldom with short axillary shoots. The bark over 2 years old is gray-brown or purplish, glabrous, the bark of an adult plant is ridged or plated, thin, and smooth. Bud scales are 4~8 mm, deciduous. The leaf blade is compound, there is one leaf per node along the stem, the edge of the leaf blade has teeth, the leaves have leaf stalks, leaves are odd-pinnate, 10~20 cm long with 3~6 pairs of leaflets, the leaves remain green all winter, it is in leaf all year. The leaflets are 4~8 cm by 2~4 cm, ovate, distally spinose dentate, coriaceous, dark, and shining green.

 Inflorescences are racemose, sometimes apiculate, the heavily scented flowers are either in dense 5~10 cm panicles or in groups of 3~6 in upright 5~8 cm racemes in the leaf axils. The flowers are yellow and have 9 sepals, 6 petals and 6 stamens, which are about 8 cm long. The pedicles are 5~10 mm long. The fruit is a globose berry, blue to purple-black, glaucous, oblong-ovoid, 6~10 mm, juicy, red juice. The berry is almost as large as a blackcurrant and is produced in large bunches, it is easy to harvest. The seeds are glossy brown, 2~5 seeds. Its flowering period is from January to May, and the seeds ripen from August to September.

 Wild Oregon Grape:Rocky Mountain grape berries Ecological environment: Berberis aquifolium Pursh is an evergreen shrub, and it is native to the Rocky Mountain regions and grows mainly in California, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington in USA, and British Columbia in Canada. The plant is also introduced for cultivation in other areas including Europe, Middle Asia, South Australia, etc.

 Growth characteristics: Berberis aquifolium grows well in heavy clay soils and also succeeds in dry soils, it can grow in sandy loamy and clay soils and can grow in heavy clay soil, it can grow in soil with mildly acid, neutral, and mildly alkaline environments, the plant grows in full shade semi-shade or no shade, it prefers dry or moist soil.

 Characters of herbs: The dried rhizome and the roots, the dried branch, and twig bark, as well as the root bark, are used.

 Pharmacological actions: ①.antioxidant action; ②.antifungal properties; ③.tannins and astringent properties, etc.

 Wild Oregon grape bark extract was found with antioxidant action, which makes the herb beneficial in treating psoriasis. The herb has antifungal properties, explaining its traditional use for skin disorders. The herb contains astringent tannins, and tannins constrict skin and mucous membrane tissue, reducing oozing, and helping the skin to heal.

 Medicinal efficacy: Wild oregan grape was used by many Native American tribes as a decoction to boost appetite and treat cough, kidney disorders, ulcers, liver ailments, constipation, and as a diuretic for fluid retention, as a tonic for weakness, later settlers used it also for bruises and cuts, to treat acne, eczema, psoriasis, and other chronic skin conditions. The herb is recommended by contemporary herbalists for treating hepatitis, jaundice, and other liver conditions, purifying the blood as a euphemism for venereal disease, in external formulations it is used for skin conditions, and especially for psoriasis. In homeopathy, the herb is used for dry skin rashes, and liver and gallbladder conditions.

 Administration of Wild Oregon Grape (Rocky Mountain grape): 
Reference: Administration Guide of Wild Oregon Grape (Rocky Mountain grape)
Herbal classic books: Dosage: A decoction is prepared with 1/2 teaspoon powdered root bark per cup of water, the decoction is drunk once per day or used in a compress. The liquid root extract is taken in 1~2 ml doses. The herb should be protected from light for storage.
 Contraindications, Precautions and Adverse Reactions: People have used the herb for generations, but the wild oregon grape has not been carefully studied for its safety, berberine and berberine-containing plants overall are considered nontoxic at recommended doses. But higher doses that contain over 0.5 grams of berberine have been reported with negative effects including skin and eye irritation, nosebleeds, shortness of breath, lethargy, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, kidney irritation and inflammation, or even cases of fetal poisonings in humans. Since it can stimulate the uterine muscles, pregnant women should probably avoid the herb.

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