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Ze Lan (Lycopus lucidus)

By June 26, 2010October 29th, 2019No Comments

Ze Lan

Botanical name: Lycopus lucidus
Common name: Lycopos, Bugleweed
Literal name translation: marsh orchid

Family: Labiatae, mint family
Part used in Chinese medicine:  aerial parts

Major Chinese medicine actions:
Gently invigorates blood, dispels stasis, promotes urination

Ze LanZe Lan
Photo Credits: (top to bottom)
Photo 1: Lycopus lucidus; 06/2008; author C. Micleu; permission Jade Institute
Photo 2: Lycopus lucidus; 06/2008; author C. Micleu; permission Jade Institute


Lycopus lucidus is often known as bugleweed and is found growing in bog gardens and damp areas such as the edge of streams. It is native to China, Korea and Japan.

Growing and Propagation

The plant grows best in full sun or part shade, and requires wet or moist soil. It blooms July to September. Seeds ripen from August to November and can be sown in spring or autumn in a cold frame. When large enough they should be potted and grown in a greenhouse for the first year until planting them in the garden in early summer. They may also be propagated by division, planting larger clumps directly into the garden, and growing smaller clumps in a greenhouse until well established, then planting them outside in the spring.

Harvesting and Preparation

For medicinal use, good quality Ze Lan has many leaves and flowers that are undamaged. Leaf material is yellowish green.

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