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Cynanchum atratum - Bunge.

Common Name Bai Wei
Family Asclepiadaceae
USDA hardiness Coming soon
Known Hazards There are some reports of toxins in this genus[179].
Habitats Mountains all over Japan[58]. Sunny meadows from the lowlands to elevations of 500 metres[275].
Range E. Asia - Northern China, Japan.
Edibility Rating    (1 of 5)
Other Uses    (0 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (2 of 5)
Care (info)
Moist Soil Semi-shade Full sun
Cynanchum atratum Bai Wei

Cynanchum atratum Bai Wei


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Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of flower
Cynanchum atratum is a PERENNIAL CLIMBER growing to 0.6 m (2ft). It is in flower from May to June. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs) and is pollinated by Insects.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: mildly acid, neutral and basic (mildly alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland) or no shade. It prefers moist soil.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map


Vincetoxicum atratum. (Bunge.)Morr.&Decne.


 Cultivated Beds;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Leaves  Seedpod
Edible Uses:

Young stem and leaves - cooked[105, 177, 179]. Some caution is advised, see the notes above on toxicity. Young seedpods - thoroughly boiled[177, 179]. Some caution is advised, see the notes above on toxicity.

References   More on Edible Uses

Medicinal Uses

Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.
Antitussive  Depurative  Diuretic  Febrifuge  Sialagogue  Urinary

The root is depurative, diuretic and febrifuge[176, 178]. In Chinese medicine, the decocted root is generally used with other herbs in the treatment of coughs and hectic fevers, haematuria, acute urinary tract infection, pharyngitis, abscesses and snake bites[176, 218]. The stem is antitussive and sialagogue[218].

References   More on Medicinal Uses

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Other Uses

None known

Special Uses

References   More on Other Uses

Cultivation details

We have very little information on this species and do not know if it will be hardy in Britain, though judging by its native range it should succeed outdoors in many parts of this country. It probably does not have any special cultivation requirements and will probably succeed in most soils in a sunny position[K]. See also the records for C. stratum which might be a mis-spelling for this species.

References   Carbon Farming Information and Carbon Sequestration Information

Temperature Converter

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Seed - sow spring in the greenhouse. 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.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

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Search over 900 plants ideal for food forests and permaculture gardens. Filter to search native plants to your area. The plants selected are the plants in our book 'Plants For Your Food Forest: 500 Plants for Temperate Food Forests and Permaculture Gardens, as well as plants chosen for our forthcoming related books for Tropical/Hot Wet Climates and Mediterranean/Hot Dry Climates. Native Plant Search

Found In

Countries where the plant has been found are listed here if the information is available

Weed Potential

Right plant wrong place. We are currently updating this section. Please note that a plant may be invasive in one area but may not in your area so it’s worth checking.

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Plants Status :

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Growth: S = slow M = medium F = fast. Soil: L = light (sandy) M = medium H = heavy (clay). pH: A = acid N = neutral B = basic (alkaline). Shade: F = full shade S = semi-shade N = no shade. Moisture: D = dry M = Moist We = wet Wa = water.


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