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乌梅

Wu Mei
Wu Mei #

Naming

Wu Mei (Fructus Mume)——Shen Nong Ben Cao Jing (Shen Nong’s Herbal)

  1. Wu Mei
  2. Dark Plum fruit
  3. 烏梅
  4. Fructus Mume

The Processing of 乌梅

Origin

The near mature fruits of perennial deciduous arbor plant Prunus mume (Sieb.) Sieb. et Zucc. , of family Rosaceae.

Location

Zhejiang, Fujian, Yunnan provinces in China.

Harvest

Collected the near mature fruits in summer; baked in low temperature and braised to wizened and be black in color.

The actual smell and taste

Burnt smell, extremely sour and astringent.

Best quality

Large, rich pulp, smooth and moist, extremely sour.

Processing

The pits removed, unprocessed or stir-baked to charcoal.

The Effect of 乌梅

Property

Sour, astringent, neutral; liver, spleen, lung, and large intestine meridians entered.

Actions

Astringe intestines to check diarrhea, astringe lung to check cough, quiet ascaris, promote the generation of fluid.

Indications

A. Chronic diarrhea and dysentery

It is a common used herb for chronic diarrhea and dysentery, because it enters large intestine meridian and astringes intestines to check diarrhea and dysentery. It could be decocted singly or combined with other intestines-astringing herbs to enhance the action of checking diarrhea or dysentery. This herb is sour and astringent in nature without astringing pathogen. For diarrhea and dysentery of damp-heat type, bloody purulent stool, it is combined with heat-clearing and damp-drying herbs. For instance, it is used with Huang Lian, Huang Bai in the formula Wu Mei Wan from Sheng Hui Fang.

B. Chronic cough due to lung deficiency

It enters lung meridian and can astringe lung to check cough, so it is indicated for chronic cough with little phlegm or dry cough without phlegm caused by lung deficiency. For chronic cough, it could be decocted into plaster singly or combined with other lung astringents to enhance the action of checking cough.

C. Abdominal pain due to ascaris

It is a good herb for quieting ascaris and can quiet ascaris to check pain. For abdominal pain, vomiting, cold limbs caused by ascaris, it is combined with vermifugal herbs. For instance, it is used with Xi Xin, Hua Jiao, Huang Lian and Fu Zi in the formula Wu Mei Wan from Shang Han Lun.

D. Diabetes due to deficiency heat

It can promote the generation of fluid to relieve thirst. For diabetes due to deficiency heat, it is combined with yin and qi tonics. For instance, it is used with Tian Hua Fen, Mai Dong, and Ren Shen in the formula Yu Quan Wan from Shen Shi Zun Sheng Shu (Shen's Treatment Book).

Besides, it can be used for metrorrhagia, metrostaxis, hematochezia and hematuria, if stir-baked to charcoal.

Dosage and Administrations

Decoct 3~10 g, even to 30 g. Appropriate dosage for external use, pounded to pieces or stir-baked to charcoal. And for stopping bleeding, the one stir-baked to charcoal is best.