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Useful Temperate Plants

Epimedium grandiflorum

C.Morren

Berberidaceae

+ Synonyms

Endoplectris tricolor Raf.

Epimedium macranthum C.Morren & Decne.

Common Name: Barrenwort

No Image.

General Information

Epimedium grandiflorum is a perennial plant growing from a slowly spreading rhizomatous rootstock and forming a close cluster of stems up to 35cm tall.
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of materials. It is often grown as an ornamental, where it can be used as a ground cover.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

58
Title
Flora of Japan. (English translation)
Publication
 
Author
Ohwi. G.
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution
Year
1965
ISBN
-
Description
The standard work. Brilliant, but not for the casual reader.
,
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.

Range

E. Asia - Japan

Habitat

Moist deciduous woodlands in the hills[
187
Title
Perennials. Volumes 1 and 2.
Publication
 
Author
Phillips. R. & Rix. M.
Publisher
Pan Books
Year
1991
ISBN
0-330-30936-9
Description
Photographs of over 3,000 species and cultivars of ornamental plants together with brief cultivation notes, details of habitat etc.
,
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.
]. Calcareous rocks in moist woodland[
58
Title
Flora of Japan. (English translation)
Publication
 
Author
Ohwi. G.
Publisher
Smithsonian Institution
Year
1965
ISBN
-
Description
The standard work. Brilliant, but not for the casual reader.
]. (This entry refers to sub-species E. grandiflorum higoense. Shimau.)

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *
Medicinal Rating *  *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitPerennial
Height0.35 m
PollinatorsBees
Self-fertileNo
Cultivation StatusOrnamental, Wild

Cultivation Details

Epimedium grandiflorum is a moderately cold-hardy plant, able to tolerate temperatures down to around -32°c when fully dormant[
187
Title
Perennials. Volumes 1 and 2.
Publication
 
Author
Phillips. R. & Rix. M.
Publisher
Pan Books
Year
1991
ISBN
0-330-30936-9
Description
Photographs of over 3,000 species and cultivars of ornamental plants together with brief cultivation notes, details of habitat etc.
], though the flowers in spring can be damaged by late frosts[
233
Title
Perennial Garden Plants
Publication
 
Author
Thomas. G. S.
Publisher
J. M. Dent & Sons, London.
Year
1990
ISBN
0 460 86048 8
Description
A concise guide to a wide range of perennials. Lots of cultivation guides, very little on plant uses.
].
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.
]. Plants can succeed in the dry shade of trees[
233
Title
Perennial Garden Plants
Publication
 
Author
Thomas. G. S.
Publisher
J. M. Dent & Sons, London.
Year
1990
ISBN
0 460 86048 8
Description
A concise guide to a wide range of perennials. Lots of cultivation guides, very little on plant uses.
].
A shallow-rooting plant, the rhizomes creeping just below the soil and the finer roots occupying the top 30cm of the 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.
]. A clump-forming species, the woody rhizomes making only short new growth each year. It needs to be divided every 3 - 4 years in order to maintain vigour[
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.
].
A very ornamental plant[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
], there are several named varieties[
187
Title
Perennials. Volumes 1 and 2.
Publication
 
Author
Phillips. R. & Rix. M.
Publisher
Pan Books
Year
1991
ISBN
0-330-30936-9
Description
Photographs of over 3,000 species and cultivars of ornamental plants together with brief cultivation notes, details of habitat etc.
]. It grows well in the rock garden or wild garden[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
].
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.
].
Members of this genus are rarely if ever troubled by browsing deer or rabbits[
233
Title
Perennial Garden Plants
Publication
 
Author
Thomas. G. S.
Publisher
J. M. Dent & Sons, London.
Year
1990
ISBN
0 460 86048 8
Description
A concise guide to a wide range of perennials. Lots of cultivation guides, very little on plant uses.
].

Edible Uses

Young plant and young leaves - cooked[
105
Title
Tanaka's Cyclopedia of Edible Plants of the World.
Publication
 
Author
Tanaka. T. & Nakao S.
Publisher
Keigaku Publishing; Tokyo
Year
1976
ISBN
-
Description
The most comprehensive list of edible plants I've come across. Only the briefest entry for each species, though, and some of the entries are more than a little dubious. Not for the casual reader.
,
179
Title
Famine Foods listed in the Chiu-Huang Pen-ts'ao.
Publication
 
Author
Reid. B. E.
Publisher
Southern Materials Centre; Taipei
Year
1977
ISBN
-
Description
A translation of an ancient Chinese book on edible wild foods. Fascinating.
]. Soaked and then boiled[
177
Title
Plants for Human Consumption.
Publication
 
Author
Kunkel. G.
Publisher
Koeltz Scientific Books
Year
1984
ISBN
3874292169
Description
An excellent book for the dedicated. A comprehensive listing of Latin names with a brief list of edible parts.
]. 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

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.
]. It 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.
]. It has an action on the genitals similar to the male sex hormone 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 leaves are used as an aphrodisiac[
218
Title
Medicinal Plants of China
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J. A. and Ayensu. E. S.
Publisher
Reference Publications, Inc.
Year
1985
ISBN
0-917256-20-4
Description
Details of over 1,200 medicinal plants of China and brief details of their uses. Often includes an analysis, or at least a list of constituents. Heavy going if you are not into the subject.
]. Administered orally, the leaf extract increases the frequency of copulation in animals[
218
Title
Medicinal Plants of China
Publication
 
Author
Duke. J. A. and Ayensu. E. S.
Publisher
Reference Publications, Inc.
Year
1985
ISBN
0-917256-20-4
Description
Details of over 1,200 medicinal plants of China and brief details of their uses. Often includes an analysis, or at least a list of constituents. Heavy going if you are not into the subject.
].

Agroforestry Uses:

A good ground cover plant[
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.
].

Other Uses

An extract of the flowers, stems and leaves is used as an ingredient in commercial cosmetic preparations as a skin conditioner[
1243
Title
CosIng
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://ec.europa.eu/growth/tools-databases/cosing/
Publisher
 
Year
0
ISBN
 
Description
CosIng is the European Commission database for information on cosmetic substances and ingredients.
].

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. 2022-08-13. <temperate.theferns.info/plant/Epimedium+grandiflorum>

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