Atractylodes Rhizome

Source Black Atractylodes Rhizone is the dried rhizome of Atractylodes lancea (Thunb.) DC. or A. chinensis (DC.) Koidz. (Fam. Cornpositae).

Producing Areas Jiangsu, Hubei, Hunan, Zhejiang, Anhui, Jiangxi, Hebei, Inner Mongolia, Shanxi and provinces in Northeast China.

Properties Spicy, Bitter, Warm

Channels Spleen, Stomach, Liver


  • Dries damp and strengthens the spleen
    For damp obstruction or accumulation in the middle jiao with symptoms such as low appetite, abdominal and epigastric distension and fullness, diarrhoea or loose stools, nausea and vomiting, a heavy sensation in the body, and a thick greasy tongue coating.
  • Dispels wind and damp, induces diaphoresis (sweating), and releases the exterior
    For wind-damp exterior disorders with symptoms such as headaches and body aches, fever, chills, blocked nasal passages, and an absence of sweating.
  • Dries dampness in the lower jiao
    When combined with the appropriate heat-clearing herbs, Cang Zhu can be used to treat damp heat conditions such as Damp Leg Qi, aching and swollen joints, and vaginal discharge.
  • Improves the eyes
    For night blindness or diminished vision.

Usage and Dosage
5-10 g is decocted for oral use.

Notes Contraindicated for the patient with heat inside due to yin-deficiency or excessive sweating due to qi-deficiency.

Bei Cangzhu, Rhizome of Atractylodes chinensis (Atractylodes chinensis [DC.]Koidz. [Fam. Compositae]), is knotty-lumpy or nodular-cylindrical, 4 – 9cm long, 1 – 4cm in diameter. The surface is blackish brown, yellowish brown when peeled. The mass is lax. The broken surface has yellow oil spots scattered. It is pungent and bitter in flavour, weakly aromatic.

Keep in a ventilated, cool and dry place and protect from moisture, mould and moths.

Description of Quality Herb
The good one is big, compact and strongly aromatic with oil spots in the broken surface.