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Common Name: Umbrella Leaf
Diphylleia cymosa is a perennial plant that can grow up to 0.70 metres tall.
It is harvested from the wild for local use as a medicine..
Eastern N. America - Virginia to Georgia.
Very rare in the wild, growing in rich woods in mountains[
], thriving by streams[
Prefers a moist humus-rich soil and semi-shade, growing well in a woodland garden[
The leaves are very large and can be up to 60cm across[
A tea made from the roots is antiseptic, diaphoretic and diuretic[
]. An infusion has been used in the treatment of smallpox[
This is a very rare plant in the wild, so little research has been carried out into its medicinal virtues. However, it is believed that the root might contain podophyllin, an effective anti-cancer agent[
Seed - best sown in a cold frame as soon as it is ripe[
]. The seed is very slow to germinate, usually taking a year or more[
]. Sow stored seed as soon as possible in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Division in spring.