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Ephedra intermedia - Schrenk. ex C.A.Mey.

Common Name Zhong Ma Huang
Family Ephedraceae
USDA hardiness 5-9
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Gritty mountain slopes at low elevations[74]. Grasslands, deserts, river valleys, floodlands, sandy beaches, cliffs, other dry, sandy or rocky places, 100 - 4600 metres[266].
Range W. Asia - Iran, Turkestan, to the Himalayas and China.
Edibility Rating    (1 of 5)
Other Uses    (0 of 5)
Weed Potential No
Medicinal Rating    (4 of 5)
Care (info)
Fully Hardy Well drained soil Moist Soil Full sun
Ephedra intermedia Zhong Ma Huang


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Ephedra intermedia Zhong Ma Huang
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Summary


Physical Characteristics

 icon of manicon of shrub
Ephedra intermedia is an evergreen Shrub growing to 1 m (3ft 3in).
It is hardy to zone (UK) 6. It is in leaf all year. The species is dioecious (individual flowers are either male or female, but only one sex is to be found on any one plant so both male and female plants must be grown if seed is required). . The plant is not self-fertile.
Suitable for: light (sandy) and medium (loamy) soils and prefers well-drained soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.

UK Hardiness Map US Hardiness Map

Synonyms

Habitats

 Cultivated Beds;

Edible Uses

Edible Parts: Fruit
Edible Uses:

Fruit - raw or cooked. The fruit is about 7mm in diameter[200].

References

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.
Antiasthmatic  Antidote  Antihydrotic  Diaphoretic  Diuretic  Vasoconstrictor  Vasodilator

Members of this genus contain various medicinally active alkaloids (but notably ephedrine) and they are widely used in preparations for the treatment of asthma and catarrh[238]. Ephedrine has a similar effect to adrenaline in the body[176]. It acts promptly to reduce swellings of the mucous membranes and has antispasmodic properties, thus making it valuable in the treatment of asthma[4]. This species contains between 0.7 and 2.33% alkaloids, of which 10% is ephedrine[240]. The whole plant can be used at much lower concentrations than the isolated constituents - unlike using the isolated ephedrine, using the whole plant rarely gives rise to side-effects[254]. The plant also has antiviral effects, particularly against influenza[238]. The stems are a pungent, bitter, warm herb that dilates the bronchial vessels whilst stimulating the heart and central nervous system[238]. The stems are also antidote, diaphoretic. diuretic, vasoconstrictor and vasodilator[176, 238]. They are used internally in the treatment of asthma, hay fever and allergic complaints[238]. They are also combined with a number of other herbs and used in treating a wide range of complaints238]. This herb should be used with great caution, preferably under the supervision of a qualified practitioner[238]. It should not be prescribed to patients who are taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors, or suffering from high blood pressure, hyperthyroidism or glaucoma[238]. Ephedrine is seen as a performance-boosting herb and, as such, is a forbidden substance in many sporting events such as athletics[K]. The stems can be harvested at any time of the year and are dried for later use[238]. The root is antihydrotic, it lowers blood pressure and dilates the peripheral blood vessels[176]. It is used in the treatment of night sweating and spontaneous sweating[176].

References

Now available: PLANTS FOR YOUR FOOD FOREST: 500 Plants for Temperate Food Forests and Permaculture Gardens.

An important new book from PFAF. It focuses on the attributes of plants suitable for food forests, what each can contribute to a food forest ecosystem, including carbon sequestration, and the kinds of foods they yield. The book suggests that community and small-scale food forests can provide a real alternative to intensive industrialised agriculture, and help to combat the many inter-related environmental crises that threaten the very future of life on Earth.

Read More

FOOD FOREST PLANTS

Other Uses

None known

Special Uses

References

Cultivation details

Requires a well-drained loamy soil and a sunny position[11]. Established plants are drought resistant and are also lime tolerant[146]. Dioecious. Male and female plants must be grown if seed is required. Some forms are monoecious[11].

References

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Propagation

Seed - best sown as soon as it is ripe in the autumn in a greenhouse[200]. It can also be sown in spring in a greenhouse in a sandy compost[K]. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots as soon as they are large enough to handle and grow them on for at least their first winter in a greenhouse. Plant out in the spring or early summer after the last expected frosts and give some protection in their first winter[K]. Division in spring or autumn[238]. Layering.

Other Names

If available other names are mentioned here

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 :

Related Plants
Latin NameCommon NameHabitHeightHardinessGrowthSoilShadeMoistureEdibleMedicinalOther
Ephedra altissimaHigh-climbing jointfirShrub0.0 0-0  LMNDM13 
Ephedra americana andina Shrub1.8 5-9  LMNDM23 
Ephedra ciliata Shrub0.2 -  LMNDM13 
Ephedra distachyaSea Grape, JointfirShrub1.0 5-9  LMNDM24 
Ephedra equisetinaMuzei Ma Huang, Ma huangShrub1.5 0-0  LMNDM14 
Ephedra fragilis Shrub1.8 7-10  LMNDM24 
Ephedra gerardianaMa Huang, Gerard jointfirShrub0.6 6-9  LMNDM24 
Ephedra majorMa HuangShrub2.0 5-9  LMNDM14 
Ephedra nevadensisMormon Tea, Nevada jointfirShrub1.2 5-9  LMNDM330
Ephedra pachyclada Shrub0.0 -  LMNDM23 
Ephedra sinicaMa Huang, Chinese ephedraShrub0.4 0-0  LMNDM14 
Ephedra torreyanaMexican Tea, Torrey's jointfirShrub1.0 0-0  LMNDM23 
Ephedra triandra Shrub0.0 -  LMNDM13 
Ephedra trifurcaLongleaf JointfirShrub2.0 -  LMNDM12 
Ephedra viridisMormon Tea, Brigham Tea, Long Leaf Ephedra, Mountain Joint Fir, Mormon Tea, EphedraShrub1.8 6-11  LMNDM23 

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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Author

Schrenk. ex C.A.Mey.

Botanical References

1174200

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