Updated: 2018-11-23Print Print
Dendrobium officinale [Photo/en.zjtz.gov.cn]
Dendrobium, a special and rare herb in Taizhou, Zhejiang province, is a yellow-green and tufted perennial evergreen herb with a vertical stem and narrowed base, which clings on tree trunks. It has distinct knobs and longitudinal groove-like lines. Its leaves, long ellipsoid and subleathery, grow on the upper part of the stem. Its racemes of crimson white flowers bloom in summer. Dendrobium germinates at the shady side of steep cliffs or on the old branches and loose trunks of deep mountain woods, perennially absorbs and picks essence of morning dew and moonlight. Its stem can be used as medicine, and is slightly cold and sweet in taste.
Li Shizhen, a famous pharmacologist in the Ming Dynasty(1368-1644), said in the Compendium of Materia Medica that Dendrobium can nourish kidney, replenish vital essence, protect intestines and stomach, relieve gaseous distention, build muscle and appease inner mind”.
Though described as the life-saving herb in the “Shen Nong’s Herbal Classic”, Dendrobium is endangered due to its extremely rare self-growth and long-term uncontrolled damage. Therefore, it has been in the wild herb list under special protection by the State Council.