Codonopsis pilosula

Known as Dang Shen in Traditional Chinese Medicine, used as a tonic to increase vital energy, or Qi. A good herb for anyone suffering from fatigue or lack of appetite.

Codonopsis is a delicate perennial climber that requires structural support to reach its full height of 2-3m. It is native to some very cold areas of Mongolia, Korea and China, so can easily tolerate the UK’s coldest winters (apparently it can withstand temperatures as low as -30’c). It grows best in partial shade with well-drained soils.

If you sow the seed early in the spring it should produce its first flowers by September. In its 2nd year it will flower throughout July and August. Its long roots can be harvested at the end of the 2nd or 3rd year. Read on for more details…

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