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Useful Temperate Plants

Epimedium brevicornu

Maxim.

Berberidaceae

+ Synonyms

Epimedium rotundatum K.S.Hao

Common Name: Yin Yang Huo

No Image.

General Information

Epimedium brevicornu is a herbaceous perennial plant growing from a slowly spreading rhizomatous rootstock and producing a clump of growth around 20 - 60cm tall[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
,
280
Title
The Genus Epimedium and other Herbaceous Berberidaceae
Publication
 
Author
Stearn. W. T.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
2002
ISBN
1 84246 039 0
Description
An excellent book covering all the herbaceous members of the Berberidaceae. Gives cultivation details as well as detailed botanical descriptions. Very well illustrated with photographs, paintings and line drawings.
].
This is one of several species known as Yin Yang Huo in China and widely used in Chinese herbalism.to treat bone diseases and problems connected with the reproductive system. The plant is harvested from the wild for local use and is widely traded. The popularity of this species in herbal treatment has led to a major overexploitation of the plant in the wild and it is now being cultivated on a large scale in order to satisfy the demand[
1770
Title
Epimedium brevicornu Maxim. (Yinyanghuo, Barrenwort)
Publication
Y. Liu et al. (eds.), Dietary Chinese Herbs, DOI 10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Author
Li-Hua Yan
Website
http://10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Publisher
 
Year
2015
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

Known Hazards

Because it is widely used in Chinese herbal treatments, the plant has had extensive toxicity tests carried out upon it, all of which have shown the plant to be safe to eat at rates considerably above recommended doses.

Botanical References

266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.

Range

E. Asia - central and southern China (Gansu, Henan, Hubei, Qinghai, Shaanxi, Shanxi, Sichuan)

Habitat

Forests, thickets, slopes; at elevations from 600 - 3,500 metres[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
].

Properties

Medicinal Rating *  *  *  *
HabitPerennial
Height0.40 m
PollinatorsBees
Self-fertileNo
Cultivation StatusCultivated, Ornamental, Wild

Cultivation Details

Epimedium brevicornu is found at high elevations in southern central China where it is known to withstand winter temperatures that can fall to -20°c, though like many Epimediums the young growth in spring can be damaged by late frosts[
280
Title
The Genus Epimedium and other Herbaceous Berberidaceae
Publication
 
Author
Stearn. W. T.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
2002
ISBN
1 84246 039 0
Description
An excellent book covering all the herbaceous members of the Berberidaceae. Gives cultivation details as well as detailed botanical descriptions. Very well illustrated with photographs, paintings and line drawings.
].
Species in this genus are generally easy to grow, succeeding in most fertile, humus-rich soils, but preferring a moist, well-drained peaty loam[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
280
Title
The Genus Epimedium and other Herbaceous Berberidaceae
Publication
 
Author
Stearn. W. T.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
2002
ISBN
1 84246 039 0
Description
An excellent book covering all the herbaceous members of the Berberidaceae. Gives cultivation details as well as detailed botanical descriptions. Very well illustrated with photographs, paintings and line drawings.
]. Requires a lime-free soil[
280
Title
The Genus Epimedium and other Herbaceous Berberidaceae
Publication
 
Author
Stearn. W. T.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
2002
ISBN
1 84246 039 0
Description
An excellent book covering all the herbaceous members of the Berberidaceae. Gives cultivation details as well as detailed botanical descriptions. Very well illustrated with photographs, paintings and line drawings.
]. Plants generally grow best in the light dappled shade of a woodland[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
280
Title
The Genus Epimedium and other Herbaceous Berberidaceae
Publication
 
Author
Stearn. W. T.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
2002
ISBN
1 84246 039 0
Description
An excellent book covering all the herbaceous members of the Berberidaceae. Gives cultivation details as well as detailed botanical descriptions. Very well illustrated with photographs, paintings and line drawings.
].
This species grows very well on a shady ledge in the rock garden or wild garden[
280
Title
The Genus Epimedium and other Herbaceous Berberidaceae
Publication
 
Author
Stearn. W. T.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
2002
ISBN
1 84246 039 0
Description
An excellent book covering all the herbaceous members of the Berberidaceae. Gives cultivation details as well as detailed botanical descriptions. Very well illustrated with photographs, paintings and line drawings.
].
Plants are self-sterile and so more than one clone is required for cross-fertilization in order for seed to be produced. Plants will often hybridise with other species growing nearby[
280
Title
The Genus Epimedium and other Herbaceous Berberidaceae
Publication
 
Author
Stearn. W. T.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
2002
ISBN
1 84246 039 0
Description
An excellent book covering all the herbaceous members of the Berberidaceae. Gives cultivation details as well as detailed botanical descriptions. Very well illustrated with photographs, paintings and line drawings.
].

Edible Uses

Leaves - cooked[
1770
Title
Epimedium brevicornu Maxim. (Yinyanghuo, Barrenwort)
Publication
Y. Liu et al. (eds.), Dietary Chinese Herbs, DOI 10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Author
Li-Hua Yan
Website
http://10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Publisher
 
Year
2015
ISBN
 
Description
 
]. The leaves are highly valued in China for their medicinal actions and so are added to foods such as soups in order to add their positive properties to the food[
1770
Title
Epimedium brevicornu Maxim. (Yinyanghuo, Barrenwort)
Publication
Y. Liu et al. (eds.), Dietary Chinese Herbs, DOI 10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Author
Li-Hua Yan
Website
http://10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Publisher
 
Year
2015
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

Medicinal

Yin Yang Huo is commonly used in traditional Chinese medicine, where it has a long history of successful use in the treatment of bone diseases, pregnancy, and gonad dysfunction[
1769
Title
Therapeutic Anabolic and Anticatabolic Benefits of Natural Chinese Medicines for the Treatment of Osteoporosis
Publication
Front. Pharmacol. 10:1344. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2019.01344
Author
He J., Li X., Wang Z. et al
Website
http://10.3389/fphar.2019.01344
Publisher
 
Year
2019
ISBN
 
Description
 
]. It is often used on its own, and is also a component in many traditional multi-herbal preparations[
1770
Title
Epimedium brevicornu Maxim. (Yinyanghuo, Barrenwort)
Publication
Y. Liu et al. (eds.), Dietary Chinese Herbs, DOI 10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Author
Li-Hua Yan
Website
http://10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Publisher
 
Year
2015
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

The aerial parts of the plant are antiasthmatic, antibacterial, antirheumatic, antitussive, aphrodisiac, hypoglycaemic, tonic and vasodilator. Its use lowers blood sugar levels[
116
Title
Oriental Herbs and Vegetables, Vol 39 No. 2.
Publication
 
Author
Brooklyn Botanic Garden
Publisher
Brooklyn Botanic Garden
Year
1986
ISBN
-
Description
A small booklet packed with information.
,
176
Title
Handbook of Chinese Herbs and Formulas.
Publication
 
Author
Yeung. Him-Che.
Publisher
Institute of Chinese Medicine, Los Angeles
Year
1985
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent Chinese herbal giving information on over 500 species. Rather technical and probably best suited to the more accomplished user of herbs.
]. The plant is used in the treatment of impotence, seminal emissions, lumbago, arthritis, numbness and weakness of the limbs, hypertension and chronic bronchitis[
176
Title
Handbook of Chinese Herbs and Formulas.
Publication
 
Author
Yeung. Him-Che.
Publisher
Institute of Chinese Medicine, Los Angeles
Year
1985
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent Chinese herbal giving information on over 500 species. Rather technical and probably best suited to the more accomplished user of herbs.
].

The leaves are harvested summer and early autumn, when the vegetation at its greatest abundance, then cleaned and dried in the sun[
1770
Title
Epimedium brevicornu Maxim. (Yinyanghuo, Barrenwort)
Publication
Y. Liu et al. (eds.), Dietary Chinese Herbs, DOI 10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Author
Li-Hua Yan
Website
http://10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Publisher
 
Year
2015
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

The plant has an action on the genitals similar to testosterone, and can increase the weight of the prostate gland and seminal vesicle - it has increased copulation in animals and increases the secretion of semen[
176
Title
Handbook of Chinese Herbs and Formulas.
Publication
 
Author
Yeung. Him-Che.
Publisher
Institute of Chinese Medicine, Los Angeles
Year
1985
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent Chinese herbal giving information on over 500 species. Rather technical and probably best suited to the more accomplished user of herbs.
].
The plant has been shown to have a positive action upon postmenopausal symptoms and inhibit osteoporosis and other bone loss diseases, while few hyperplastic effects on the uterus were found[
1769
Title
Therapeutic Anabolic and Anticatabolic Benefits of Natural Chinese Medicines for the Treatment of Osteoporosis
Publication
Front. Pharmacol. 10:1344. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2019.01344
Author
He J., Li X., Wang Z. et al
Website
http://10.3389/fphar.2019.01344
Publisher
 
Year
2019
ISBN
 
Description
 
,
1770
Title
Epimedium brevicornu Maxim. (Yinyanghuo, Barrenwort)
Publication
Y. Liu et al. (eds.), Dietary Chinese Herbs, DOI 10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Author
Li-Hua Yan
Website
http://10.1007/978-3-211-99448-1_69
Publisher
 
Year
2015
ISBN
 
Description
 
]. These antiosteoporotic effects may be related with the oestrogenic properties by the intrinsic phytoestrogens including some of the flavonoids, lignans, sterols, etc[
1769
Title
Therapeutic Anabolic and Anticatabolic Benefits of Natural Chinese Medicines for the Treatment of Osteoporosis
Publication
Front. Pharmacol. 10:1344. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2019.01344
Author
He J., Li X., Wang Z. et al
Website
http://10.3389/fphar.2019.01344
Publisher
 
Year
2019
ISBN
 
Description
 
]
In the systems pharmacology study, there are 77 components in Epimedium possessing the analogous structure to oestrogen. Many of these phytoestrogenic compounds have the beneficial effects to inhibit osteoporosis, including icariin, epimedin A, epimedin B, epimedin C, icariside II and icaritin, epimedoside C, baohuoside I, baohuoside II, etc[
1769
Title
Therapeutic Anabolic and Anticatabolic Benefits of Natural Chinese Medicines for the Treatment of Osteoporosis
Publication
Front. Pharmacol. 10:1344. doi: 10.3389/fphar.2019.01344
Author
He J., Li X., Wang Z. et al
Website
http://10.3389/fphar.2019.01344
Publisher
 
Year
2019
ISBN
 
Description
 
].

Other Uses

None known

Propagation

Seed - best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe in late summer[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
280
Title
The Genus Epimedium and other Herbaceous Berberidaceae
Publication
 
Author
Stearn. W. T.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
2002
ISBN
1 84246 039 0
Description
An excellent book covering all the herbaceous members of the Berberidaceae. Gives cultivation details as well as detailed botanical descriptions. Very well illustrated with photographs, paintings and line drawings.
]. Sow stored seed as early as possible in the year in a cold frame. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in light shade in the cold frame or greenhouse for at least their first winter[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
]. Plant them out in mid to late summer[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].
Division is best carried out in late summer according to one report[
280
Title
The Genus Epimedium and other Herbaceous Berberidaceae
Publication
 
Author
Stearn. W. T.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
2002
ISBN
1 84246 039 0
Description
An excellent book covering all the herbaceous members of the Berberidaceae. Gives cultivation details as well as detailed botanical descriptions. Very well illustrated with photographs, paintings and line drawings.
], in late spring according to another[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.
Cuttings in late summer[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
Cite as: Temperate Plants Database, Ken Fern. temperate.theferns.info. 2022-08-17. <temperate.theferns.info/plant/Epimedium+brevicornu>

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