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Berberis vulgaris - berberis vulgaris l.

Family Barberry - Berberidaceae

Барбарис обыкновенный Барбарис обыкновенный Барбарис обыкновенный

Botanical characteristics. Deciduous erect shrub 1.5-3 m tall. It grows on forest edges, in scrub thickets, in forests, on mountain slopes, and also in culture.

Subsurface organs consist of thin horizontal rhizomes and a strong main root with lateral roots. The shoots are smooth, ribbed or grooved. The trunks and shoots are covered with spines. The leaves are alternate thin membranous, elliptical or obovoid-oblong, serrated along the edge, dull at the top and shiny below. The flowers are light yellow in axillary drooping racemes. Fruits - oblong berries, sour, from purple to dark red. Seeds are dark brown. Blossoms in April - May, bears fruit from late July to September.

Spread. It mainly grows in the southern zone of the country: in the Caucasus, in the Crimea, sometimes it occurs in the middle zone, and is widely cultivated in gardens and at summer cottages.

Used plant parts. Medicinal raw materials are roots, bark of roots, shoots, leaves, flowers, fruits, seeds collected in the usual way.

Chemical composition. Roots, bark, stalks contain alkaloids: berberine, berberrubine, columbamine, palmatin, iatroricin, berbamine, isotetrandrin, oxyacontine, magnoflorin. The leaves contain carbohydrates: polysaccharides; protoberberine alkaloids, vitamins, phenol carboxylic acids, anthocyanins, carotenoids. Fruits contain carbohydrates, pectins, organic acids, vitamins, tannins, carotenoids; seeds - fatty oil.

Application. Roots are the raw material for the production of berberine, which in the form of berberine bisulfate is used in medical practice as a choleretic agent, lowers blood pressure, causes a contraction of the uterus. The roots are part of the collection for the preparation of the mixture of Zdrenko. The bark of the roots is included in the preparation "Cholelitin", its action is similar to berberine. A decoction of bark and roots is used for tumors of the liver, cancer of the stomach and throat; with tuberculosis, pleurisy, feverish states; diseases of the eyes and mouth.

Alkaloids have antibacterial activity. The bark of the branches is used for medical purposes similar to the roots. Alcohol extract and the amount of alkaloids have sympathicotropic properties and are more potent than ergot extract. Berberine bisulfate isolated from leaves - as a choleretic; tincture of the leaves causes a reduction in the smooth muscles of the uterus and vasoconstriction, somewhat accelerates blood coagulation; It is used in obstetric and gynecological practice for atonic bleeding in the postpartum period and for subinvolution of the uterus, as well as for bleeding associated with inflammatory processes. Tincture of the fruit has antibacterial, hypotensive and sedative effects. In Bulgaria, the fruit is used to treat diabetes, as well as stomach cramps.

In Chinese, Mongolian and Tibetan medicine, barberries are used in diseases of the mucous membranes, in the copious secretion of mucus, in diseases of various organs, in the treatment of tuberculosis, as a diuretic; in Indian medicine - for scarlet fever and mental illness, as a laxative, antiseptic and tonic for the weakness of the body; in Transbaikalia - for colds and flu as an antipyretic and diaphoretic, for stomach cramps, stomach ailments and diseases of the spleen. In Azerbaijan, barberry preparations are used to treat diabetes. In homeopathy, the roots of barberry are used for metabolic disorders, kidney disease, for the treatment of gout and hemorrhoids. Barberry is widely used as a vitamin and food tool. Young leaves are a source of vitamins.


  • For broth, take 20 g of the bark of the roots, chop, pour 200 ml of boiling water, insist 30 minutes, cool 10 minutes without removing from the bath, filter warm. Take 2 tbsp. spoon 2-3 times daily before meals.
  • Tincture of the root is prepared on 70% alcohol at the rate of 1: 5. Insist 10 days. Take 40 drops to receive 2-3 times a day.

It is used in homeopathic practice Barbaris 3x, 3, 6. For disorders of salt metabolism: in renal and gallstone diseases; with diseases of the joints with a feeling of weakness, general weakness, pain, aggravated by movement. It is indicated for some chronic digestive disorders and sexual weakness.