Jiu Cai Zi – Allium Seeds – Semen Allii Tuberosi

Jiu Cai Zi

English Name: allium seed, tuber onion seed

Pharmaceutical Name: Semen Allii Tuberosi

Medica Category: Yang-Tonifying Herbs

Properties: Jiu Cai Zi enters the Liver and Kidney channels; it is acrid and sweet in nature and warm in temperature.

What is Jiu Cai Zi?:

The Chinese Herb Jiu Cai Zi is the ripe seeds of the tuber onion (aka garlic chives or Chinese chives– Allium tuberosum Rottler). Allium tuberosum is native to the steppes of Northern China and Mongolia but is now naturalized throughout Asia and also cultivated around the world for use as a culinary ingredient. Tiny, star-shaped white flowers form in clusters in the late summer/early autumn and then go to seed. The seeds are then harvested and either decocted or ground into powder for use as medicine.

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Therapeutic Actions of Jiu Cai Zi:

Jiu Cai Zi tonifies the Liver and Kidney and fortifies yang to address Liver and Kidney deficiency presentations such as pain and coldness of the lower back and knees, impotence with spermatorrhea, clear/watery leukorrhea, polyuria (not a complete list).

Jiu Cai Zi warms the middle to address chronic hiccups and vomiting (i.e. chronic rebellious stomach qi).

–safety/clinical notes:

Contraindicated for use in persons with yin-deficient fire.